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New AML Rules Released

For the first time since 2010, federal regulators have released a new guidebook on how to meet anti-money-laundering (AML) regulations, Bank Info Security reported.

The 2014 Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering Examination Manual, released on Tuesday (Dec. 2), highlights 12 areas for banks to focus on, including suspicious activity reporting, currency transaction reporting, and due diligence in relationships with third-party payment processors and nonbank institutions.

The 442-page manual, which is issued by the FDIC, Federal Reserve Board, National Credit Union Administration, OCC and State Liaison Committee with help from FinCEN and the Office of Foreign Assets Control, officially doesn’t outline new policy. But it lays out what examiners will be looking for in financial institutions’ AML programs starting in 2015.

Among the recommendations in the new guidance are that banks ensure their Bank Security Act/AML staff are involved with all new product deployments and the review or termination of customer relationships; determine whether reliance on certain parties, such as car dealerships that provide loans, is reasonable; and address risks related to loans and payments offered through nonbank entities by limiting or restricting transaction types.

In recent months, regulators have issued multiple advisories about banking regulators’ increasing expectations for AML compliance. In March, Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry said that senior banking executives are accountable for meeting AML regulations, all the way up to the board level. And in August, FinCEN reiterated that regulatory examinations will be focused on ensuring that C-level executives stay engaged and informed about money-laundering risks.


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