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OCC Bulletin 2021-29
June 30, 2021
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Chief Executive Officers of All National Banks, Federal Savings Associations, and Federal Branches and Agencies; Department and Division Heads; All Examining Personnel; and Other Interested Parties
Pursuant to the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020 (AML Act),1 the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN)—in consultation with other relevant Treasury Department offices, the U.S. Attorney General, federal functional regulators,2 relevant state financial regulators, and relevant national security agencies—today published the first national priorities for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT priorities).3 As required by the AML Act,4 the priorities are consistent with the National Strategy for Combating Terrorist and Other Illicit Financing.
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and National Credit Union Administration (collectively, the agencies) joined with FinCEN in publishing an interagency statement that explains that the publication of the AML/CFT priorities does not immediately create any new obligations for banks5 and clarifies how the priorities will be used.
The AML/CFT priorities and the interagency statement apply to all OCC-supervised banks. FinCEN recognizes that every one of the priorities will not be relevant for every bank.
The AML/CFT priorities
The interagency statement
Pursuant to the AML Act, FinCEN is required to publish the AML/CFT priorities and update them at least once every four years. The AML Act also provides for FinCEN, in consultation with the federal functional regulators and state financial regulators, to promulgate regulations as appropriate to carry out the AML/CFT priorities within 180 days of the publication of the priorities.6
Please contact James Vivenzio, Director for BSA/AML Policy, at (202) 649-5470.
Grovetta N. Gardineer
Senior Deputy Comptroller for Bank Supervision Policy
1 Refer to Pub. L 166-183, Division F, “Anti-Money Laundering,” (AML ACT) sections 6001–6511.
2 AML Act 6003(3) defines “federal functional regulator” to include, among others, the federal banking agencies that examine financial institutions for compliance with the Bank Secrecy Act.
3 Refer to 31 USC 5318(h)(4)(A), as amended by AML Act 6101(b)(2)C).
4 Refer to 31 USC 5318(h)(4)(C), as amended by AML Act 6101(b)(2)(C).
5 “Banks” refers collectively to national banks, federal savings associations, covered savings associations, and federal branches and agencies of foreign banking organizations.
6 Refer to 31 USC 5318(h)(4)(D), as amended by AML Act 6101(b)(2)(C).