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US House Passes Bill Easing Bank Anti-Laundering Rules January 23, 2007

Posted by notapundit in Congress, Politics, US News.
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WASHINGTON (Dow Jones)–The House of Representatives passed the “Seasoned Customer CTR Exemption Act” Tuesday with bipartisan support, though the measure faces a more difficult test in the Senate.

Among other things, the bill gives financial institutions an exemption from filing certain “currency transaction reports” with federal regulators if the bank deals with the customer on a regular basis and understands the customer’s transactions well enough to rule out any possibility of money laundering or terror financing.

The bill, which was pushed by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., but was introduced by Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., was supported by the banking industry.

“I’m grateful to Chairman Frank for prioritizing this issue, and for getting it done early in the 110th Congress,” Bachus said in a statement. “By eliminating superfluous reports, CTR reform will reduce unnecessary costs borne by financial institutions, while making it easier for law enforcement professionals to pinpoint suspicious activity.”

Bachus is the ranking Republican on the House Financial Services Committee.

“Over-regulation and under-regulation are both unwise, and excessive regulations can hinder the ability of law enforcement to do its job by hampering resources and overburdening personnel,” Frank said in a statement.

The bill, HR 323, had 25 co-sponsors. Under existing law, these CTRs must be filed on bank customers making currency transactions of $10,000 or more.

By Damian Paletta, Dow Jones Newswires

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