Corrupt deal-making at the highest level is happening right now, even in the U.S. In a year that has already seen ending anonymously-owned companies a top priority for some U.S. lawmakers, “McMafia” shines a light on these secretive companies and the uncomfortable truths that we at Global Witness have been campaigning on for many years.
This week, The Clearing House Association, a major trade association for U.S. commercial banks, endorsed legislation requiring the collection of information about the real owners of U.S. companies (S. 2489/H.R. 4450). The Clearing House Association is the oldest banking association in the U.S., and it advocates on behalf of the largest U.S. commercial banks, such as Bank of America, Wells Fargo and SunTrust, just to name a few.
Their letter states, “We believe the bill would assist public sector efforts to identify money laundering and terrorist financing through the disclosure of the beneficial owners of corporations. In addition, the legislation would bring the United States further in line with international AML/CFT expectations, such as the recommendations developed by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). We can see no justification for allowing corporations to shield their ownership.”