Any type of translation work has to be precise but financial translation requires more attention to details as even a minor mistake can lead to a major problem. The financial translator has to correctly understand the target market to ensure the use of the right terminology. Even if this is standard practice, there are still challenges in financial translation that linguists face during their workday.
Financial translation requires expertise and experience; hence, clients should look for a translator who is a subject matter expert. Do not entrust your financial translation to someone who only handles standard translation work.
Translation for the financial sector is very particular and there are several aspects during the translation work wherein the translator should be very careful.
Precision and exactness are very important in financial translation. The translator has to use the right terminology based on the target audience and target language since the financial terms are not universal. For example, ‘common stock’ in the U.S. is ‘called-up share capital’ in the UK. The ‘share of stock’ is called ‘action’ in France, while ‘capital’ is called ‘share capital’ in Russia.
Financial terms have nuances that are unique and intricate, which present a challenge to translators who do not have understanding or experience in financial translation. ‘Accounts receivable’ is a common term in the United States, but in the UK, it is called ‘trade debtor’ while in New Zealand, the amount is called ‘debtor.’
‘Stocks’ is the financial term used in New Zealand for the term ‘inventories’ that are used in the United States.
In Saudi Arabia, there is a financial term that is unique to the financial statements prepared in the country. The term is called ‘zakat’ is an alms tax. Islamic law requires the Muslims to pay it. Zakat is used for religious or charitable purposes.
Understanding the concept is very important in financial translation. It is not feasible to use direct translation of the terminology as this could mean providing different meanings to the terms. The translator must know where to apply precise terms. For example, mining and smart contracts are often used when dealing with cryptocurrency. It is vital for the translator to decide which should be used: translate for the accuracy of the technical and financial terms or translate for the exact meaning of the words.
Clients should keep in mind that the technical terms that are self-explanatory to them can be difficult to translate into the target languages. It is essential for a client to request for a professional and experienced financial translator who has a deep understanding of the finance market and its unique language aside from having exceptional ability to translate. A financial translator should also be able to work fast and comply with the demanding deadlines of the sector.
Confidentiality in financial translation
Financial documents need to be secure since they can disclose the lifeblood of a company. They have to remain private and handing them over to a third party poses a risk. But since the documents have to be translated especially if you are a global corporation, you need to expressly trust your language services provider (LSP). You have to ascertain that the LSP implements client confidentiality and data security.
Professional translation companies usually require their translators and interpreters to sign non-disclosure contracts. Since translation companies use translation memory tools, the LSP has to ensure that external sources cannot access them. This is vital to clients who order financial translations. They must have an assurance that their most important information would not be used fraudulently, tampered with, leaked or mistranslated.
Clients have to specify that the translators to be assigned to handle their financial translation are professional, responsible and trustworthy, because the information they would be translating is very valuable.
Numbers are very important
In financial documents, numbers matter greatly. You might be surprise that the language for numbers also differ depending on which part of the world you are located. The standard numbering system that you are used to when you are in the United States is different from the system used in Japan and China.
When doing financial translations, the translator not only has to be careful about the words but also be very cautious of the numeric figures. The use of punctuations also differs. A comma is used as a separator, like 1,500, which reads as one thousand five hundred in American English. In different parts of Europe, the same number could be read as ‘1.5’ that is why it is important for the translator to be very careful about the numerous small details that can have big effects on the translation of the financial document.
Different countries also call numbers in other ways. In the United States, it is common to say one billion. In the United Kingdom however, they prefer to call it 1,000 million.
Time is critical in financial translations
The world of finance is extremely fast-paced. It is also constrained by time. It most cases, tight deadlines are requires since the financial statements and reports must be submitted immediately. It is very important that these documents do not miss any deadline. Financial calendars should be closely followed. Emails and news reports, whether they are about a market crash or the price value suddenly plunged, these documents should be disseminated immediately, thus translation should be quick and accurate. In financial translation, all the concerned teams and other stakeholders, including the translators, should work harmoniously and prepared to work at any moment.
This is the reality in the financial world. There could be tons of documents to be translated for a company, but financial translations are always given priority so the strict deadlines could be met.
Rules and the market culture in the financial world are complicated
The intricate and elaborate nature of finance is complicated by its rules and regulations. They are different from country to country, which makes translation quite difficult. The financial translator must be aware of all the rules and regulations of the source and target countries including new updates that could affect the document and its translation. Sometimes, the disclaimer or report is only applicable in one country, which further complicates the translation.
The languages of finance market
In the main the global language of finance is English and many of the financial language around the world use the language, but there are always exceptions to the rule. In many financial sectors, Spanish is a prominent language, even for U.S. based companies.
Some of the other finance languages tie in to some of the biggest exchanges and economies in the world. The largest in the world is the New York Stock Exchange or NYSE, which is often quoted by Forbes. Another stock exchange in the U.S. is NASDAQ. The market caps of these two stock exchanges are $13.4 trillion and $3.9 trillion, respectively. Because of their powerful force it is no wonder that English is used as the language of finance.
Other prominent finance languages are German, French, Mandarin and Japanese because of the size of their stock exchanges, such as Germany’s Frankfurt Stock Exchange, Toronto Stock Exchange in Canada, Shanghai Stock Exchange in China and the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Everything needs to be exact when translating financial documents, which is why it needs a professional translator with subject matter expertise. An error in the positioning of a punctuation mark, an excess digit or omission of a digit can mean thousands in monetary losses.
Rates for financial translation
The importance of integrity and accuracy of information in financial documents cannot be underestimated. You cannot dispute the fact that financial translation is integral to global commerce. A single mistake in translation not only equates to monetary losses. It could also mean loss contracts and legal disputes, which companies want to avoid. It is crucial for a company to choose the right LSP to translate any type of financial documents they need.
It is also vital that clients understand that the prices of financial translation vary based on several factors. The complexity of the text is one of the factors. Likewise, financial translation is more expensive than standard translation because the former requires subject matter experts.
Another thing that makes the price of financial translation higher is the source and target language. Translating financial documents into Asian languages is more expensive than translating into major European languages.
The deadline of the translation is another factor that determines the price of financial translation.
For the above reasons alone, you can tell that you need a professional translator who has a deep understanding of the subject matter and who can deliver accurate financial translation quickly.
Anytime you need financial translation, rely on the professional subject matter experts of Day Translations, Inc. Our native-speaking financial translators continually update their skills and knowledge. They see to it that they know the latest developments and techniques in translating financial documents. The translators of Day Translations are located in-country, ensuring that they can capture the nuances of financial terminology applicable to a country and its language so they are able to deliver high quality and accurate financial translation. It is easy to get in touch with us. You can either call us at 1-800-969-6853 or send us an email at Contact us. Our offices are open 24/7, every day of the year to serve your translation needs immediately wherever you are.
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