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Brown Bag Lunch - GAO's Newly Issued Report on the Extent of De-risking Along the Southwest Border and Its Recommendation to FinCEN and the Banking Regulators
Mayer Brown
1999 K ST NW.
Washington, DC 20006
Wednesday, March 14, 2018, 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM EDT
Category: Events

Program Description:

“Derisking” is the practice of banks limiting certain services or ending their relationships with customers to, among other things, avoid perceived regulatory concerns about facilitating money laundering. The Southwest border region is a high-risk area for money laundering activity, in part, because of a high volume of cash and cross-border transactions. Congress asked GAO to review if Southwest border residents and businesses were losing access to banking services because of derisking and branch closures. Come to this brownbag lunch to hear GAO experts discuss key findings of their recently issued report, Bank Secrecy Act: Derisking along the Southwest Border Highlights Need for Regulators to Enhance Retrospective Reviews (GAO-18-263). They will describe the audit objectives that drove their work, the various methodologies they used, and the conclusions they reached, as well as their recommendation to the federal banking regulators and FinCEN to conduct a retrospective review of BSA/AML regulations.

Register Here

To participate remotely via webinar, contact the WHF office at whf@whfdc.org or 703-683-4742.


  • Christine Houle, Senior Analyst, Financial Markets and Community Investment
  • Erica Miles, Senior Analyst, Financial Markets and Community Investment
  • Michael Hoffman, Assistant Director for Economics

Cost: Free for members

Metro: Farragut North (Red) and Farragut West (Blue and Orange)

Speaker Bios:

Christine Houle is a Senior Analyst in GAO’s Financial Markets and Community Investment team, where she has led a variety of reviews on financial markets and consumer protection topics, including the financial regulatory structure, Bank Secrecy Act and anti-money laundering compliance, credit card fees and disclosures, and servicemembers’ foreclosure protections.

Erica Miles is a senior analyst in GAO’s Financial Markets and Community Investment team, where she has led and contributed to various reviews in the financial market and housing sectors including, nonbank mortgage servicing, access to banking services in border Southwest communities and homeless assistance. Before joining GAO in 2004, she supervised credit and collections departments for regional and large national banks.

Michael Hoffman is an Assistant Director for Economics in GAO’s Applied Research and Methods team, where he contributes to a variety of GAO efforts to assess policy responses to global and domestic risks in financial markets and the macroeconomy.


For questions on the program content, please contact Barbara Keller at 703.819.7528 or keller.barb@gmail.com. Please contact the WHF office at whf@whfdc.org or 703-683-4742 with any other questions.

Not a member? Call WHF at 703-683-4742 and we would be happy to assist in getting you signed up for membership.