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Global Financial Institutions Fined $26 Billion for AML, Sanctions & KYC Non-Compliance


A decade after the Lehman’s Collapse, Fenergo unveils data of fines imposed on financial institutions over the last decade

September 26th, 2018, Dublin, Ireland – Fenergo, the leading provider of Client Lifecycle Management solutions for financial institutions, has released data detailing the global fines activity of regional and in-country regulators over the past 10 years. A staggering $26 billion in fines has been imposed for non-compliance with Anti-Money Laundering (AML), Know Your Customer (KYC) and sanctions regulations in the last decade.

The data in the form of an interactive infographic available on Fenergo’s website is based on various sources, including regulatory and news outlets providing insight into fines by region, country, regulator and by types of fines imposed. The data highlights how regulators have approached breaches from foreign versus domestic financial institutions.

The top 10 key highlights of the research include:

    1. The US accounts for nearly 44% of all global regulatory AML/KYC fines, yet almost 91% of the total value ($23.52 billion).
    2. Europe has imposed 83 fines, totaling $1.7 billion, the majority being imposed by the UK‘s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
    3. Asia Pacific regulators have levied 79 fines worth almost $609 million, commencing in 2011.
    4. The Middle East still lags behind other regions for financial enforcements (recording a total of $9.5 million in the last 10 years).
    5. The US Department of Justice is the most punitive regulator in the world when it comes to imposing financial penalties for non-compliance, levying half of the global AML/sanctions fines amount, nearly $14 billion, followed by the New York Department of Financial Services at $3.6 billion.
    6. US regulators have hit foreign banks hard, imposing fines on European banks nearly five times that imposed against US banks.
    7. Globally, 2015 was the most punitive year for fines, with $11.52 billion levied against banks.
    8. $8.9 billion was the highest single fine ever levied against a bank by one regulator.
    9. Fines for sanctions violations account for 56% of all violations levied globally (by $). This differs from APAC and Europe where AML-related fines far outweigh fines for sanctions violations.
    10. The Nordics is the only region that fines their own domestic banks more than international banks (majority of financial institutions get fined by international regulators rather than their own regulators).

Commenting on the findings, Laura Glynn, Director of Global Regulatory Compliance, Fenergo, said,

“Up until now, the focus of regulators had been on the US and European markets. However, we are now witnessing regulators in Asia Pacific and The Middle East markets becoming more proactive in their supervisory efforts.”

Marc Murphy, Fenergo’s CEO, added,

“As a firm dedicated to providing the financial industry with client onboarding and regulatory compliance solutions, Fenergo continuously captures and maintains this data as part of our day-to-day business. It is our experience and deep understanding of global financial regulations that permits us to extrapolate global trends, allowing us to offer this additional insight to our clients.”

On October 23rd, Fenergo will be hosting a webinar featuring key subject matter experts who will dissect these findings and offer new insights into global financial enforcement trends.