The Canadian and American central banks are pulling out all the stops to support the economic recovery, with the latest move being their indications that they expect to hold interest rates near zero over the next few years. However, as the COVID-19 pandemic persists, the hoped-for sustained revival in consumer borrowing and spending is anything but certain. In an unprecedented move on Sept. 16, the U.S. Federal Reserve said it doesn’t expect to raise its key interest rate until 2023, providing a very powerful signal that near-zero rates are here to stay for a long time. A week earlier, the Bank of Canada had said, “The Governing Council will hold the policy interest rate at the effective lower bound [0.25 percent] until economic slack is absorbed so that the 2…
LONDON鈥擭ot all of Britain’s financial firms are convinced of the need to invest large sums to crack down on dirty money, leaving the quality of anti-money laundering controls falling short, the Financial Conduct Authority’s chief enforcer said on Thursday.
Global banks, including UK-based HSBC, Barclays, and Standard Chartered, face fresh scrutiny on their efforts to curb money laundering after a cache of leaked documents showed they transferred more than $2 trillion in suspect funds over nearly two decades.
“What surprises me still is there is a view in some quarters that anti-money laundering systems and controls is a lot of money for nothing in return, and it’s a huge bureaucratic exercise in red tape rather than something that’s really important,” the FCA’s head of enforcement Mark Steward told reporters.
“What that tells me is that the point of AML controls has somehow got lost and gone missing from the challenge, and understanding that this is all about reducing crime of a very serious nature.”
Steward said banks are spending a lot of money on systems and controls that, in many cases, are still not yet good enough to do the job and “something really needs to happen”.
“I am not yet sure that there is a strong enough, unanimous view that this is really serious,” Steward said.
There is no major bank in Britain that hasn’t been or isn’t currently the subject of an ongoing probe related to the adequacy of their dirty money safeguards, he said.
“We have a number of cases in the pipeline,” he said.
By Huw Jones
Focus News: UK Watchdog Blasts Banks Over Dirty Money Safeguards
Facebook has shut down more than 180 fake accounts, groups, pages, and Instagram accounts that it determined to be run in China, which posted content on the U.S. presidential election and spread Beijing’s talking points on a range of topics, from the South China Sea to Hong Kong protests. The U.S. social media giant announced the takedown in a blog post published on Sept. 22, saying that these accounts were a violation of its rule against “coordinated inauthentic behavior on behalf of a foreign or government entity.” In total, 155 Facebook accounts, 11 pages, nine groups, and six Instagram accounts were shut down. The Instagram app is owned by Facebook. Nathaniel Gleicher, Facebook’s head of security policy and author of the blog post, explained that while people behind these accounts…