Tuesday 28th June 2016
NEWS TICKER: JUNE 27TH: This morning the story is about keeping calm even as the West European political landscape looks set to change forever. The aftershocks from the UK’s decision to leave the EU last week will continue for some time. This morning however the focus is on the UK Chancellor’s statement that was designed to calm the markets and set out a marker for the Leave camp in the ruling Conservative Party to keep him in a unity government if the divorce from the EU is to proceed unimpeded. Expect lots of posturing, but the reality is a deal will be wrought between prominent Remainers and Leavers, so that they can ‘sell’ to a clearly divided population that a reasonable outcome for the UK can be achieved. Expect also that many Leaver will now renege on many of the pledges and charges levelled against the EU, as they were plangently either not achievable or true. Politically, the fallout is far from over: Nicola Sturgeon, whose reputation has been enhanced by the referendum will now seek ways for Scotland to exit the Union; a clever move as firms looking to locate overseas to keep long term free access to Europe will now seriously consider Edinburgh and Glasgow as alternatives to Ireland or Luxembourg. There are areas of concern however: one is in Northern Ireland, where a call for a Border Poll by leader Martin McGuinness could reignite old political divisions and moves by many MPs in the Opposition Labour Party to oust the party’s leader Jeremy Corbin is distracting attention from the main question: how does the UK extricate itself from Europe with the most gain and least pain to all sides. While Leave campaigners and television commentators look to try to reassure the British public that they should not be worried by short term movements in sterling and the stock market. According to brokerage Clear Treasury: “Sterling this morning has drifted lower again since Friday’s close which saw the pound depreciate 9%. The worst may not be over for the pound either as the Brexit fallout is by no means over. We will likely see aftershocks in the market for the foreseeable future. The difficulty here will lie in anticipating these shocks, and for this reason it’s hard to justify many traders being able to justify holding or purchasing additional sterling. This is why we feel that the pound may not have reached its bottom just yet. Keep a close eye on economic data from the UK with GDP, market sentiment, retail figures etc all likely to be impacted going forward” – The world’s top central bankers meet in Brussels today for a three-day summit; no doubt Brexit is on the agenda and they will certainly be talking measures to calm the markets. On Tuesday, European leaders meet and following the inimitable Angela Merkel’s admonition to all Europeans to treat with the UK kindly and well will help defuse what could have been a rancorous meeting – St Louis Missouri-based Stifel Financial Corporation today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell Sterne Agee's legacy independent brokerage, clearing, and RIA businesses to INTL FCStone Inc. (NASDAQ: INTL). Following a financial restructuring of the combined businesses, consideration will approximate the tangible net asset value of the entities. The transaction is expected to close immediately after regulatory approval, which is anticipated in July. As part of the agreement, Stifel has agreed to sell: Sterne Agee Financial Services, Inc.; Sterne Agee Clearing, Inc.; Sterne Agee Leach, Inc.; Sterne Agee Asset Management; and Sterne Agee Investment Advisory Services. To support these businesses, INTL FCStone has agreed to hire substantially all of the Birmingham, Alabama-based support professionals. Ronald J. Kruszewski, chairman and CEO of Stifel, says, "Last year we successfully integrated the Private Client Group branches and institutional fixed income business from our Sterne Agee acquisition. We are pleased to have found an acquirer in INTL FCStone who is committed to these businesses and the professionals in the Birmingham community." -

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Moneyval Committee pushes anti-money laundering agenda

Wednesday, 26 June 2013
Moneyval Committee pushes anti-money laundering agenda The Council of Europe’s anti-money laundering body  (MONEYVAL) has called on European governments to improve the implementation of measures for fighting money laundering and terrorist financing in the legal, financial and law enforcement fields. http://www.ftseglobalmarkets.com/

The Council of Europe’s anti-money laundering body  (MONEYVAL) has called on European governments to improve the implementation of measures for fighting money laundering and terrorist financing in the legal, financial and law enforcement fields.

In its anual report, published today, MONEYVAL reports that the countries it evaluates have broadly improved their technical compliance with international standards by enacting and reforming laws and regulations, in particular in the prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing offences.

However, MONEYVAL concludes that law enforcement and prosecutors need to do more in achieving serious money laundering convictions and in producing confiscation orders that have a deterrent effect in offences generating major proceeds. The Committee also stresses that there are still very few convictions of those third parties who launder proceeds on behalf of organised crime.



“Last week, the G8 leaders publicly committed to 8 principles for fighting money laundering and tax evasion, and to report on the action they take. All European states should follow these principles. In a Europe emerging from a global financial crisis, it is more important than ever that financial institutions do not accept clients or transactions unless they know who they are dealing with and the source of the funds that they are handling”, said the Chair of MONEYVAL, Anton Bartolo.

“If our financial institutions are tainted by funds which are proceeds of crime, then they pose risks to their own reputations, the reputations of their countries, and to the global financial system, which relies so much on confidence in our financial institutions”, he stressed.

MONEYVAL's latest report evaluates measures taken by Poland to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. The report sets out an analysis of the implementation of international and European standards. Poland identified money laundering and terrorist financing as one of the strategic priorities of its two National Programs for counteracting and combating organised crime and for combating terrorism, for the years 2012–16.

Technical deficiencies identified in the third round report on criminalisation of money laundering have not yet been addressed. The number of investigations and prosecutions for money laundering offences appears low, compared to the level of funds-generating crime. The evaluators considered there still remains an insufficiently proactive approach to money laundering investigation by law enforcement. The confiscation regime remains incomplete and the level of final confiscations also appears low.

Following the MONEYVAL recommendation in its third round evaluation, Poland introduced into its Penal Code an independent, autonomous offence of terrorist financing. Nevertheless, the offence is still not fully in line with international standards.  While Poland has a broadly sound legal structure for preventive standards, the legislative provisions dealing with customer due diligence requirements are still not entirely in line with international standards. In particular, there is no clear requirement to identify beneficial owners and to verify the customers’ identities from reliable and independent sources. Additionally, Polish law still does not require adequate transparency of legal persons.

 

 

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