Central Bank slaps €1.24m fine on Canadian banking unit

The Central Bank has fined the Irish division of Canadian lender Bank of Montreal more than €1.24m for breaching the conditions of its Irish banking licence.

The bank failed to submit three operational risk returns to the regulator and failed to establish and maintain effective processes and internal controls to ensure compliance with this regulatory reporting condition. Its breaches dated between 2013 and 2015.

The fine was reduced from a potential €1.78m due to the Canadian bank admitting its breach.

However, it is the second time Bank of Montreal Ireland has been fined for deficiencies in regulatory reporting.

The regulator said the previous enforcement action was "an aggravating factor" in this case.

The Central Bank's director of enforcement and anti-money laundering Seána Cunningham said the regulator must have a "clear line of sight" to any potential risks within regulated companies as the financial sector continues to grow and become more complex.

"All firms operating in Ireland must do so in line with their regulatory licence, and all conditions attaching to it. Compliance with licence conditions is not optional, and breaches are treated seriously by the Central Bank as demonstrated in this enforcement action against the firm," she said.

"All firms must ensure the highest standards in identifying, properly managing and monitoring, and reporting on its operational risks in line with the Central Bank's requirements," Ms Cunningham said.

Since 2006 the Central Bank has imposed fines of more than €70m under its administrative sanctions procedure and has made 127 settlements.

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