High-profile sanctions cases are spurring large banks and third-party software vendors to improve how they identify when counterparts and clients secretly act on behalf of blacklisted entities, say compliance experts.
Compliance officers face challenges anytime two financial institutions merge. But when one bank buys up the assets and the problems of a failed competitor, the hurdles can exponentially increase.
A federal judge's questioning of the recent DPA between the U.S. Department of Justice and Barclays Bank, could signal that future agreements will be more expensive for financial institutions and more perilous for their top executives, according to legal analysts.
Federal bank examiners have added a new criterion to their evaluations: how well banks coordinate their anti-money laundering, anti-fraud and data security efforts, according to compliance professionals.
The Royal Bank of Scotland will pay the United States $500 million over Bank Secrecy Act and sanctions violations committed by the now defunct ABN Amro, U.S. officials said Monday.
If March's record penalty against Wells Fargo & Co. has reminded compliance departments of the bite of anti-money laundering regulatory fines, it has also been a reminder of something else. With acquisitions come problems.
The United Kingdom's chief financial regulator Tuesday fined Barclays PLC more than $4 million for "serious weaknesses" in its securities transaction monitoring reporting, the largest penalty issued by the agency for such problems.
European and Asian governments must implement stronger due diligence standards, including the creation of databases on the assets of public officials, to root out corruption, a London-based non-profit organization said.
The mergers of some of the nation's largest banks, brokerages and mortgage lenders will mean turmoil in compliance departments due to employee redundancy and culture clashes, say bank officials.
A Paris court convicted the National Bank of Pakistan and French Bank Societe Marseillaise de Credit on Thursday of failing to detect an 82 million euro money laundering scheme, according to the Associated Press.
Banks that merge or consolidate risk regulatory reprimands if they choose to scale back their anti-money laundering protections in the process, say consultants.
Financial institutions are struggling to determine how to comply with a federal ban on "facilitating" companies and individuals that do business with OFAC sanctioned countries, say compliance experts.
The Republic of the Netherlands must improve communication between agencies that investigate money laundering and terrorist financing and make better use of the suspicious transaction reporting information provided by financial institutions, according to a government audit report released Tuesday.
UK-based institutions Barclays PLC and Lloyds TSB Bank both said last month that they were being investigated by the U.S. Justice Department and the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control for possible violations of sanctions against state sponsors of terror.
Embattled French bank Societe Generale is among more than 140 institutions and individuals charged with money laundering for allegedly failing to spot a criminal network that moved more than $121 million from France to Israel in the late 1990s.
The biggest challenge banking compliance departments face is the internal struggle for adequate resources and attention from senior management, says Markus Schulz, chief operating officer of the anti-money laundering compliance department for ABN AMRO in the Netherlands.
In a letter sent to SEC Chairman Christopher Cox on Thursday, Frank, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, said the list unfairly includes companies that have divested, or have negligible business dealings, in these countries.
A senior DEA official confirmed that the agency is investigating the company's Miami-based private banking unit and said the case involves money laundering schemes known as black market peso exchanges, according to a report slated for publication in the July issue of Forbes.
The private banking unit is overseen by the company's Miami-based American Express Bank International, and has been plagued by anti-money laundering related regulatory trouble for more than a decade.
The bank, which is based in the Netherlands, said Thursday that it has set aside €365 million in anticipation of the settlement of a Justice Department criminal probe into ABN's dollar clearing activities, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions compliance and other issues.