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Ocean Container

Designed to be moved inland on its own chassis and can be loaded at the shippers plant for shipment overseas. Basic types of containers are dry van, open top, half high, hi cube, flat rock, tank container, refrigerated container, insulated container, tilting container. Average outside dimensions are generally 20, 35, and 40 feet in length, 8 feet wide, and 8 feet high standard.


OFAC: Office of Foreign Assets Control

An agency of the United States Department of the Treasury that administers and enforces economic and trade sanctions based on US foreign policy and national security goals against targeted foreign states, organizations, and individuals.


Office of the U.S. Trade Representative

U.S. government agency responsible for negotiating trade agreements. 


On Board Bill of Lading

Bill of lading validated at the time of loading to transport. Most common types: onboard air, boxcar, container, rail, truck and vessel.


On Board Endorsement

The notation on a bill of lading stating goods have been loaded on board the ship. The on board notation must be dated and initialed.


On Time Presentation

A presentation of documents made on or before expiration date and within presentation period.

  • For marine bill of lading, date begins on date of “on board” notation.

  • For air waybill, flight date is used. If not stated, it is the issue date of the air waybill.

  • For all other transport documents, date starts on the later of date of issuance or receipt stamp.


Open Account

Trade arrangement and payment terms in which goods are shipped to a foreign buyer without guarantee of payment.


Open Position

The exposure to a foreign exchange risk not covered by an offsetting transaction (i.e., a foreign exchange contract has not been entered into to protect or “hedge” against fluctuation risk).


Opening Bank

Common terminology among bankers for issuing bank in the letter of credit process.



A foreign currency option gives a corporate entity the right, but not the obligation to buy or sell a particular currency at a particular “strike price.” This option can be exercised on or before the date the option expires. More flexible than spot or forward contracts, however, options cost money (e.g. a premium is charged up front based on the strike price, interest rates, length to maturity, and volatility of the currency). Think of maintaining the opportunity to take advantage of better exchange rates in the future. Appropriate for hedging uncertain exposures (e.g. bids, monthly sales of varying amounts throughout the year, etc.).


Order Bill of Lading

Usually “to order” bills of lading are to the order of the shipper and endorsed in blank, thereby giving the holder of the bill of lading title to the shipment. They may also be to the order of the consignee or bank financing the transaction. Order bills of lading are negotiable whereas Straight bills of lading are not. See also Negotiable Bill of Lading.


Order Marine Bill of Lading

The carrier delivers to anyone the shipper or consignee so orders. “Consigned to order of...(name)” (i.e., someone other than buyer, perhaps freight forwarder or customs agent).


Original Bill of Lading

This has the signature of the carrier (master) or its agent (for the master). If marked “copy non-negotiable” or if no signature, not original bills of lading are necessary to claim goods at port.



The original copy of the wire that has the customer’s original signature present.


Outward Collection

(1) How the Remitting bank refers to a collection. (2) Collection being sent overseas to collecting bank(s) for presentation to buyer.

Outward Letter of Credit

How the Issuing bank refers to a letter of credit.





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