January 1, 2013
By Ivan Castano
December 11, 2012 is a date that HSBC shareholders are unlikely to forget soon. That day, the bank agreed to pay a record $1.92 billion to settle US government fines and forfeitures for money laundering. It was the largest US penalty ever imposed on a bank.
It followed a US Senate investigation which had revealed in July that the bank had transferred $7 billion from Mexican drug cartels – as well as more funds from nations penalized by US sanctions, most notably Iran – into the US. The result of the fine has been a scramble by Latin American banks to strengthen their money laundering safeguards.
"If LatAm bank controls were not up to date then, you can bet they
Banks are scrambling to tighten controls as US agencies step up their efforts against money laundering. The knock-on effects of new legislation could have a profound impact on the face of Latin banking