Washington, D.C. – Today, the Bank Policy Institute announced its support for new draft legislation put forward by Senators Warner, Cotton, Jones, and Rounds to crack down on anonymous shell companies and modernize anti-money laundering laws.
“We appreciate Senators Warner, Cotton, Jones, and Rounds making this a bipartisan, bicameral issue,” said Greg Baer, President and CEO of the Bank Policy Institute. “Their legislation would eliminate a key tool used by human traffickers, kleptocrats, terrorist financiers, and others seeking to hide their illicit activities; its passage is far overdue.”
BPI is a strong supporter of ending the use of anonymous shell companies and modernizing the anti-money laundering regime. In early 2017, BPI’s predecessor organization, The Clearing House, published an anti-money laundering report that identifies fundamental problems with the anti-money laundering framework and proposed a series of reforms to remedy them.
The Senate draft includes several ideas highlighted in the 2017 report, including focusing on the use of technology in detecting suspicious activity, using a risk-based approach for threat detection, streamlining the SAR and CTR process as well as establishing processes for improving feedback amongst law enforcement, regulators, and financial institutions. Additionally, the bill includes language to establish a beneficial ownership database, accessible by federal and local law enforcement, a top priority outlined in the report.
The Bank Policy Institute (BPI) is a nonpartisan public policy, research and advocacy group, representing the nation’s leading banks and their customers. Our members include universal banks, regional banks and the major foreign banks doing business in the United States. Collectively, they employ almost 2 million Americans, make nearly half of the nation’s small business loans, and are an engine for financial innovation and economic growth.