RIX, the Riksbank’s funds transfer system, can be said to be the hub of the Swedish payment system in that all payments between banks, clearing organisations and other agents eventually pass through RIX. The Riksbank thus functions as the banks’ bank in the settlement of payments in Swedish kronor. RIX is an important part of the Swedish financial infrastructure, with a daily turnover corresponding to one sixth of the Swedish gross national product.
Several banks, clearing organisations and the Swedish National Debt Office are participants in RIX. Payments are transferred electronically between the accounts held at the Riksbank by these participants. Payments in RIX are settled on a real-time gross settlement (RTGS) basis. This means that payments are settled one by one, and that funds transferred into participants’ accounts become immediately available for making payments. However, RIX also includes functions that allow several transfers to be carried out simultaneously, in order to make the system more efficient. RIX can therefore be said to be a hybrid system that offers the risk-related benefits of real-time gross settlement, as well as the liquidity-saving benefits associated with carrying out transfers simultaneously. RIX handles transfers resulting from transactions between participants as well as those that derive from payments or transactions carried out by participants’ customers that are processed between RIX participants.
Payments that arise in the course of the Riksbank’s own transactions with RIX participants, for instance in connection with sales of securities and exchange of notes and coins, are also settled in RIX.
For the purpose of promoting safety and efficiency in the system the Riksbank can provide credit during the day, known as overnight credit, to settle payments in RIX. However, credit is only granted against adequate collateral.
In February 2009 the Riksbank began using a new technical system and platform for RIX.