Anti-money laundering watchdog’s secrecy a disservice to Canadian banking industry

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The federal anti-money laundering watchdog’s secrecy over identifying the first bank ever fined for breaching its standards has smeared the reputation of the entire industry, a financial sector advocate said Thursday.

The federal anti-money laundering watchdog’s secrecy over identifying the first bank ever fined for breaching its standards has smeared the reputation of the entire industry, a financial sector advocate said Thursday.

Janet Ecker, president of the Toronto Financial Services Alliance, is calling on the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (Fintrac) to name the bank recently fined $1.1 million for failing to report a suspicious transaction and various other transfers.

“They should make the name public rather than tarring everyone,” she said.

“Our industry has an excellent reputation globally. So clarity is important to ensure we don’t suffer needless reputation risk.”

The failure to name the offending institution is a disservice to the industry because it paints an unfairly dubious picture of all players, said Ecker, a former Ontario finance minister who’s in China on a trade mission with Mayor John Tory.