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Starting point: banks in Australia have behaved appallingly. The Australian Consumer and Competition Commission, ACCC, has been shown up as .. pick a negative adjective and it's probably been used. The ACCC, along with other regulators who have been shown up as wanting are now doing their best to prove they are "across it," as Australians say. Today, they say that they have produced a "final report" from their residential mortgage price inquiry. But.. has the ACCC now moved from ensuring good behaviour to managing how banks do business? It raises risk management questions, liquidity issues and even the stability of the housing market which has been in an accelerating downturn for a while and is showing all the signs of turning into a bit of a crisis.

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Mrs Shilpa Karandikar and Mr Shrikrishna Karandikar have pleaded guilty in a magistrates' court in Australia after breaching a banning order made following an ASIC investigation.

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The Hong Kong Monetary Authority, in its daily announcement timed for after everyone except Compliance has set off for Lan Kwai Fong (17:39, this one arrived), has some startling news for all those who are wetting themselves over the future of FinTech. A third of applicants for licences made such a mess of the process that the HKMA has thrown them out.

This ultra-simplified explanation clarifies the absolute basics of a subject that has become shrouded in myth and mystery.

The blockchain, crypto-currencies (or cryptocurrencies) like bitcoin, distributed ledgers and smart contracts are, actually, stuff you already know..

It's almost impossible to open a website or blog with even a peripheral interest in financial matters and not see a headline saying something like "The Death of Bitcoin." Total tosh. So are the click-bait headlines in the style of "is blockchain dead?"

This is why.

FinCEN and the Federal Banking Agencies have issued a joint statement "encouraging innovative industry approaches" to money laundering compliance. It's not long and it encourages both human and technological innovation. But, importantly, it specifically says that it does not require those who don't need it to jump into NewTech just because it's there. It also says banks are free to fail when trying new things. It also says that some NewTech might result in regulators finding out things companies might rather they didn't.

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Maybe Floyd Mayweather has been hit in the head too many times. The USA's Securities and Exchange Commission describes him as "a well-known professional boxer." The "well-known" bit is perhaps an understatement: his social media "reach" in 2017 was huge: 21 million "followers" on Instagram, 7.8m on Twitter and 13.4 m on Facebook. So when he said "hey, this is a good idea," it carried far more weight than his slight frame. When people talk about "fame" and "fortune," they might have been talking about Mayweather's return to the ring for one fight only but he used that fame to be paid for boosting crypto-currency ICOs.

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According to the USA's Securities and Exchange Commission, Khaled Khaled (male) is "a well-known celebrity music producer known as “DJ Khaled." So, that's the SEC marked out as fans, then.

And just to prove it, the SEC has done a deal following its favourite things "without admitting or denying the allegation" specifically expressed to be "pursuant to [the] Respondent's Offer of Settlement and are not binding on any other person or entity in this or any other proceeding." That means, no one who suffered loss can rely on the deal to support their case. Nice one, America.

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With the superficial attitudes of commentators on all sides of the media divide pushing risk and compliance professionals in the direction of their fashion-driven topics, it's useful to remind readers that while they are focussed on the next big thing, past big things remain a threat. Pump and dump is an example of market manipulation and, of course, a predicate crime for money laundering or, even, funding future crime including, possible, terrorist activity. What is even more surprising is that the same names crop up repeatedly but they never go to jail.

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A former financial planner from Melbourne, Australia, has been prosecuted by the regulator the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)

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Issued under its Regulations and Financial Stability area, the new MAS form is a part of the Regulations and Guidance and Licensing function in relation to the securities, futures and funds market segment.

It covers those applying to become a recognised exchange or market operator, including those in the FinTech sector.

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It's long been an issue in the USA and it's spreading across the world as dozens of small towns in the UK can testify. Banks, which are not a public service, are closing (or not opening) branches in poor or small communities. The irony, some say, is that those are the very communities that most need physical banks. In the USA, several states are once more tackling the problem.

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It's the old, old story: someone has what they think is a great idea then forces others to adopt it against their wishes, even when their wishes take into account their own security arrangements. This time, it's a bank and even they disclaim risks they force customers to accept. It's either a snafu in policy or a snafu in communications.

Welcome to Standard Chartered, Malaysia.

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This is not about money laundering. It's about how the UK is de-EU-ing law and regulation ready for "exit day." The UK's draft statutory instrument called "The Money Laundering and Transfer of Funds (Information) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2018" is an object lesson in technical documentation. It has no life of its own and can only be read alongside other UK law and Regulations. It is of extraordinary importance not because of what it does but because of what it demonstrates. This is an indication of the clerical complexity of withdrawing from the EU even when the principles, as they will in relation to the Money Laundering Directives, will remain as now.

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It's one of those times where there is double take. Are you reading it right? A Court has said it will not approve an agreed settlement between a financial institution and a regulator? Oh, OK, it must be that the Court thought that the penalty was too light and he's sent the parties away to decide how much more should be paid, or perhaps penalties beyond money should be added?

No, that's not it. It's far more fascinating than that.

(previous story)

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