Treasury rule to require that mutual fund companies report suspicious transactions
WASHINGTON – Mutual fund companies will be required to file reports on suspicious financial transactions as part of an effort to catch drug dealers, terrorists and other money launderers.The Treasury Department said the new rule was published in the Federal Register on Thursday. Mutual fund companies will have to start filing such reports to the government in 180 days.The rule brings mutual fund companies more in line with banks, securities firms, money-services businesses, casinos and other companies that are required to file similar reports with the government.Mutual fund will have to file suspicious activity reports with the government for any questionable transaction or series of transactions valued at $5,000 or more, Treasury said.Like other financial companies, mutual funds are encouraged to report financial transactions of lesser amounts if the company suspects a law might have been broken.”Suspicious activity reporting by mutual funds is expected to provide highly useful information to both law enforcement and regulators and will be an additional tool to protect the U.S. financial system from terrorism and other illicit finance,” said Robert Werner, director of the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.Mutual funds are already required to set up anti-money laundering programs.Mutual funds are a popular investment. As of last year, investors held approximately $8.6 trillion in U.S. mutual fund shares, according to Treasury’s document on the new rule.Separately, Treasury Secretary John Snow, who delivered a speech Thursday to employees at the Treasury agency, applauded their role in helping to combat terrorist financiers and other criminals.”The skillful use of the financial information at your disposal is a critical asset in going after terrorists, disrupting their funding networks and frustrating their objectives,” Snow said.Vail, Colorado
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