Please note that the STEP2-T System is transitioning to continuous gross settlement (CGS). The new CGS mechanism and the existing cycle-based settlement model will co-exist until July 2022 to enable a phased, risk-minimising migration of the large STEP2 user community. As of July 2022, the cycle-based mechanism will no longer be supported by the STEP2-T System. Click for more information about the continuous gross settlement.

Settlement and processing cycles

Clearing and settlement cycle arrangements

The STEP2 SDD Core settlement takes place between 12:00 and 12:45 CET. The STEP2 SDD Core Service validates in real-time from 06:00 to 11:00 CET and from 14:00 to 22:00 CET.

SDD notification files are delivered to debtor participants six times a day.

STEP2 separates the SDD transactions in order to deliver collections and cancellations/ rejects/returns in different files. This allows participants to first process transactions with same-day value (R-transactions) and then transactions with future settlement dates (collections).

Sending cut-off times: participants can send collections for the following business date until 16:00 CET. The sending cut-off for sending R-transactions is at 11:00 CET.

How the clearing and settlement process works

Clearing and settlement phases

Each payment cycle can be divided into three standard phases:

  • Validation phase: from the opening time of the cycle until the sending cut-off time, incoming and warehoused payments for this cycle are validated and stored.
  • Settlement phase: from settlement opening time until settlement cut-off time, STEP2 calculates each participant’s position and sends the results to the TARGET2 Interface for settlement in TARGET2.
  • Output phase: when settlement has been completed, STEP2 delivers the payments and reconciliation reports to the direct participants.

Settlement of STEP2 in TARGET2

Participants settle their STEP2 positions by paying a net calculated amount in TARGET2. STEP2 first creates bilateral gross positions and reports them to the participants, calculates the multilateral net positions and sends these amounts to TARGET2 using the Ancillary System Interface.

Participants in the STEP2 SEPA Services have the possibility to request MT 900 / MT 910 and MT 940 / MT 950 messages from TARGET2 for reconciliation purposes.