5 Biggest Challenges in Financial Translation Services

The demand for translation is surging as the financial industry becomes a global sector. The global financial market size is expected to reach beyond 3359 billion USD in 2024 at a 7.7% CAGR. 

As multinational businesses, financial institutions, and investors expand their horizons into the international market, the need for global communication becomes more paramount than ever. Financial institutions should have an extensive knowledge about the differences and financial terms across borders to perform efficiently across borders.

Financial translation plays a crucial role in translating all necessary documents for localization purposes. From translating to handling critical financial documents, this task demands unparalleled excellence from skilled and professional translators.

That translator should be someone who has proficient knowledge of financial documents, compliance requirements, vocabulary, commercial standards, local guidelines, and reader expectations of each country. Apart from the language barriers, Linguists face some challenges that lie behind the scenes and often go unnoticed in the realm of financial services.

Let’s delve deep into the 5 key challenges that affect financial translation services in Dubai and some tips to overcome these hurdles.

  1. Complexity of financial terminology

Financial documents are loaded with complex terminology that can be confusing even to experienced translators. From accounting principles to intricate investment strategies, each industry within the financial sector has its own jargon. 

Translating such terms requires a good comprehension of the context in which a term is used. Although some terms are common for all countries, they may have different meanings in the financial context. Even a small mistranslation can lead to significant financial losses and defamation of the institution. 

Translators should know how to use the right terminology for the right target audience. Some financial institutions worldwide require that their financial documents comply with the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).  Translators should keep track of the terminology updates of IFRS.  Maintaining your own glossary of financial terms can ensure consistency and improve the translation accuracy of your document.

  1. Ensuring numerical precision

We can’t deny the fact that numbers are unavoidable when dealing with financial documents. It is everywhere from account statements to financial reports. Although most countries use a decimal number system, there might be some exceptions of using different number formats and punctuations.

Ensuring numerical and punctuation accuracy is one of the significant challenges of financial translators. Using appropriate decimal format and punctuation rules when localizing content results in accurate financial translation.

For instance, in English decimal point is used to separate numbers while in European countries comma is used.  Similarly, 19.5 reads as 19 and a half in English, but in Vietnamese it reads as 1950 (Thousand and nine fifty).

 Imagine having to pay a hundred times more than you thought. Terrifying, right? 

Apart from the numbers and punctuation, the date format also varies depending on the country. When working with the numbers, even the slightest fluctuations may disrupt the integrity of financial statements and the trust of investors. This is exactly why it’s essential to cross-check and verify calculations for precision.

  1. Protecting sensitive data

Financial documents are highly confidential as they involve sensitive information about the company and businesses.  Any leaks of financial information can pose a great deal of risk to the organization. It is not a translating error, rather it is a translator’s error.

Translators must ensure confidentiality and security of their client’s information. It is also the organization’s responsibility to make sure that their language service providers deliver professional and ethical service by analyzing their past works.

Some translation engines require translators to sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA). This agreement outlines the responsibilities of the involved parties to uphold data confidentiality and to protect sensitive data. Apparently, it prevents competitors and rivals from acquiring sensitive information from financial translation services.

  1. Meeting the tight deadlines

In the fast-paced financial world, time is of the essence. The more agile they are than their competitors, the closer they are to success. Financial reports and annual statements have tight deadlines due to their rigid publication dates.

This can be demanding for translators to do a tremendous amount of work fast and precisely, especially during earnings seasons, acquisitions, or regulatory filings.  Translation agencies frequently collaborate with the financial reviewer and auditor to speed up the translation process.

  1. Navigating Regulatory and compliance measures

If an organization is trying to expand its business on the global market, it must comply with the local compliance and regulatory rules. Compliance and Regulatory measures are sets of policies that a financial institution must follow to protect their clients, investors, stakeholders, and customers.

Compliance is non-negotiable in the worldwide regulatory bodies.  Ensuring trust, integrity, and legality of financial operations are crucial objectives of compliance and regulatory adherence.

A study on the global financial crisis widely known as “The Great Recession” that happened in 2008 states that non-compliance led to the overwhelming loss of financial assets related to mortgages. Implementing sufficient compliance and regulatory measures could have saved endless amounts of retirement funds, houses, and the reputation of financial firms.

The regulatory and compliance measures differ for every country, making the financial translation a complicated process. Translators must be up-to-date with all the financial regulations of the target country to avoid mistranslations.


While financial translation services are crucial for organizations in facilitating global commerce, they are not without their challenges. By finding the perfect translation agencies and translators, you can bridge the cultural differences across borders.

Accurate translation of financial documents adapts your content to resonate with the global audience. Hopefully, the above-mentioned challenges and tips help you to achieve top-notch and smoother translation. 

For any translation services contact us – Legal Translation in Dubai