A newly implemented plan by HSBC Holdings Plc to export U.S. anti-money laundering standards to its global offices faces a difficult but common challenge for big banks: approximately half of its estimated 80 affiliates are located in bank secrecy jurisdictions. During congressional testimony last month, executives from the London-based institution touted a Group Circular Letter (GCL) ordering affiliates to adopt and adhere to a single anti-money laundering (AML) standard, that of HSBC Bank USA (HBUS). HSBC began implementing the program in April 2011, according to the letter. The bank said during the hearing that the overhaul should help to correct...
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