Multicurrency accounts are a special arrangement between a bank and its corporate customer whereby the bank allows the customer to receive or make international payments in a range of currencies from a single account or multiple subsidiary accounts. The agreement generally specifies the following:
- The base currency in which the account will be denominated
- The portfolio of currencies that will be accepted
- The spread or margin over the spot rate that will be used for purposes of exchanging each currency back to the base currency
- The value date that will be applied to debits and credits for each transaction type and currency
Electronic Banking Services
Major banks in Europe and Asia offer a wide range of electronic banking services. One of the most popular are reporting services that provide information on balances and previous day transaction detail. Such reporting services allow both local and international access. For example, the balances and debit and credit details for a Dutch subsidiary of a U.S. company can be reported to local management in the Netherlands as well as to the parent. Major international banks and third-party service providers can consolidate reporting by a company's banking network, both foreign and domestic operations, into a single daily report. The major global banks also offer a range of electronic transaction initiation services. These services typically allow companies to initiate international wires and other global electronic transactions in a variety of foreign currencies. The general topic of electronic banking services is covered in more detail in Chapter 10, Information Management and Technology.