Financial internships and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

American regulators have recently been scrutinizing financial institutions’ internship programs for potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.1 The United States Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced its first internship-related FCPA settlement with Bank of New York Mellon Corp.  


EU’s blacklisting of Caribbean IFSCs: A surprise to no one

Political leaders must take the necessary decisions to more robustly defend their interests and work with likeminded decision-makers within the EU and indeed the U.S.  to make the right policy decisions that would increase economic growth instead of seeking to punish foreign and sovereign jurisdictions.


Stupid or complicit? Neither

Some of the purported details contained in the FBI documents are so deliciously funny – the top soccer executive who claimed his only income was as a salesman for a “pet rock company” or that he was suffering from advanced dementia ...


A question of substance

The way forward, I strongly believe, is for international finance centers, and practitioners operating in them, to demonstrate even more strongly that they are substance jurisdictions rather than brass-plate ones.


The fight of the EU against tax avoidance: More powers for Brussels

Considering the higher degree of centralization, increased audit coverage and more discretionary decision-making by governing bodies (e.g. the European Commission challenging tax rulings), taxpayers will face increased uncertainties and thus tax risks. 


BEPS pivotal in fight over tax competition

Of the 34 current members of the OECD, the number taxing corporations on a territorial basis has doubled since 2000, up to 28 of 34 in 2012.


Involving customers in water regulation

What benefits does it bring? Greater mutual understanding and satisfaction, because regulation is geared more closely to the preferences of the customers and the needs of the business.


Cayman kicks off National Risk Assessment process

Under the watchful eye of the premier, the minister for Financial Services, the attorney general, and the managing director of the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, representatives of the private and public sectors gathered at a hotel for a two and a half day workshop.   


A practical guide to corporate governance:

Corporate governance has remained a hot topic of discussion for sophisticated and institutional investors and industry professionals alike.  Multinational corporations are exposed to sky-high tax risks, especially in the field of transfer pricing 


Is there an ideal AML data storage and retrieval software program?

Add the introduction of FATCA and responsibility for reporting to senior managers, regulators and financial reporting units in multiple formats, and for some the workload can quickly become overwhelming. 


The challenges of financial counterterrorism:

Current financial counterterrorism (CFT) approaches fail to combat existing terrorist financing threats largely because the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) lags behind the evolution of terrorist group business models.   


The European Commission’s fight against BEPS

The EU can hardly be accused of complacency when it comes to addressing BEPS. The EU’s Action Plan published in December 2012 contained a plethora of initiatives targeted at limiting tax evasion as well as tax avoidance. 


Compliance: The battle of revenue and risk

We know that the financial services industry has been grappling with the cost of compliance for the last 10 to 15 years but a new era might be dawning with the elusive term “culture” being officially used in the term “culture of compliance.


Preventing conflicts of interest

Earlier this year, PwC was heavily fined by New York’s Department of Financial Services for “improperly altering” its sanctions and anti-money-laundering report for Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi. This recent “whitewashing” case has reopened the ethical question concerning the way in which independent consultancy firms ...


International Financial Reporting Standard

IFRS 9 sets out the requirements for recognizing and measuring financial assets, financial liabilities and some contracts to buy or sell non-financial items. IFRS 9 replaces International Accounting Standard (IAS) 39 Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement.


How do you ensure compliance?

How effective are your bank compliance processes and procedures? Do you have a systematic approach to compliance?   


Cayman Islands approved stock exchange regime

Most investors and traders can spend their entire lives without stepping foot on the floor of a major stock exchange, but it’s hard to imagine functional markets without them. A stock exchange is a hub where buying and selling of stocks takes place...


U.S. can’t deliver on FATCA promises

To entice foreign governments to assist in administration of the law and bypass certain legal obstacles, the U.S. Treasury Department has promised reciprocal information sharing. Now, however, they are admitting to having promised more than they can deliver. 


FATCA: Has Cayman orphaned its trusts?

Some, maybe. But they weren’t part of the real Cayman family anyway. And they won’t be homeless: Either another FATCA partner jurisdiction will adopt them or, as a last resort, Uncle Sam will.


Willfulness, FBAR penalties and the OVDP

More and more countries are signing FATCA agreements with the IRS. Swiss banking secrecy is a thing of the past. Taxpayers who have undisclosed accounts are justifiably frightened that the IRS or DOJ will learn about their accounts.   


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