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Swift to manage info needs of 6 banks

Six major banks including JPMorgan and Citigroup have signed up with an industry group to develop a central register of information on other banks they deal with to help to meet increasing compliance demands and costs. Swift, the Brussels-based group used by thousands of banks to exchange financial messages, said six banks had agreed to develop and use the register, which will collect and share standard information required by banks as part of their due diligence processes. Senior bankers have for some time said there is potential for banks to share information on customers to help to meet increasing KYC requirements and save money by reducing duplication of information. Swift’s KYC Registry will at first focus on correspondent relationships, which are the other banks they deal with in handling transactions. It was not clear whether data sharing will later extend to corporate customers or individuals. Banks have in the past pointed to client confidentiality and security as stumbling blocks to such sharing of information, but Swift said each bank will retain ownership of its own information and control over which institutions can view the data. The six banks which have signed the agreement are JPMorgan, Citi, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Commerzbank, Societe Generale and Standard Chartered. Swift said it expects more banks to join in the coming months.

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