The United Kingdom's banking regulator Tuesday penalized a Zurich-based financial institution and its former anti-money laundering officer a combined 540,000 pounds for broad failures in risk-ranking and enhanced due diligence procedures. The U.K.'s Financial Services Authority (FSA) said that Habib Bank Zurich AG underestimated the risk of approximately 67 percent of the accounts the agency had reviewed. In doing so, the Swiss bank removed Pakistan and Kenya from its list of high-risk jurisdictions because it believed it had "specialist knowledge" of the countries that mitigated its vulnerabilities to financial crime, the agency said. As a result, nationals of those countries...
If you aren't certain that the Bank Secrecy Act job market is unusually active these days, ask anyone who has recently taken an executive position in a compliance department facing regulatory scrutiny. The message they're hearing: move quickly or move out of the way.
The U.K.'s planned new regulator of banks and other financial institutions would impose tougher oversight than its predecessor, a series of proposals for the agency's forthcoming operations handbook show.
U.K. financial regulators will likely only get tougher on British banks that violate anti-money laundering laws in the coming year, possibly going so far as to prosecute individuals, according to Jonathan Fisher QC, a London-based barrister.
A U.K. fine against a London-based private banking subsidiary of the Royal Bank of Scotland underscores the risks financial institutions take when they allow their account managers to vet valued clients, say compliance officials.
The private bank that serves Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and other wealthy individuals was fined 8.75 million pounds sterling by the United Kingdom's bank regulator for anti-money laundering deficiencies.
One out of every three British banks is unwilling to turn away customers with an "unacceptable" level of risk for money laundering, the United Kingdom's chief financial regulator said in a report Wednesday.