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Financial Institutions Investigations & Enforcement

Global Solutions to Global Risk

Our global financial investigations and enforcement practice consists of a broad bench of professionals who understand the day-to-day compliance issues and risks faced by financial institutions and how financial institutions interact with regulators on these issues around the world. We bring this knowledge and experience to bear when advising clients on their specific regulatory exposures and related risks. Our team, operating in 19 countries, provides a fully integrated approach to respond to the threat and reality of enforcement action. We are assisting a range of financial institutions in handling information requests, investigations, enforcement actions and litigation, at all times striving to manage legal, reputational and regulatory risks. Our team includes numerous prominent former government enforcement lawyers and regulators, with more than 25% of all firm litigation and bank regulatory partners having served in government enforcement positions.

We advise major banks and investment banks, fund managers, broker-dealers, custodians, exchanges, payment services firms, clearing houses, settlement systems and leading asset management firms, their boards, senior managers and individuals on some of the most complex and high-profile regulatory enforcement investigations, examinations, enforcement actions and litigations affecting the financial industry.

What Makes Us Different?

We offer a one-firm solution, which means our clients have one legal team advising on their complex global investigations and enforcement matters. Our clients benefit from working with market-leading practitioners in the US, London, Hong Kong, Singapore, Frankfurt, Paris and other key financial centers.

We help clients shape their compliance procedures and balance that with their commercial imperatives. As a result, clients can expect sophisticated and comprehensive representation from a team with an in-depth understanding of not only the client’s needs, but of regulators, financial products and businesses involved.

What We Advise On

The firm is an established market leader with proven capability in governance, reporting, disclosure, criminal and civil insider trading matters, market abuse, market manipulation, asset management, derivatives, compliance, conduct of business and numerous other types of matters. We advise on:

  • Anti-money laundering, including compliance program design and implementation
  • Bribery and corruption issues arising in transactions and business dealings
  • Complaints brought under internal complaints procedures
  • Government investigations and examinations (e.g., SEC, CFTC, Fed, OCC, OFAC, Financial Conduct Authority and National Crime Agency) and related civil and criminal litigation
  • Internal investigations
  • Money laundering reporting under NCA and other international regimes
  • Regulatory competition investigations, including market and cartel investigations
  • Regulatory investigations, which often involve confidentiality, data protection and contractual issues
  • Relationships with regulators
  • Sanctions compliance, including compliance program design and implementation
  • Structured finance products regulatory investigations, including securities, commodities and financial products such as CDOs, CLOs, CDS and ARS
  • The implementation of changes to systems and controls, policies and procedures in anticipation of, or in response to, regulatory imperatives

Established Credibility with Regulators

We have well-established and long-standing credibility with regulators. Several of our practitioners have very recent government experience. We combine and leverage a wealth of varied and international experience from former federal prosecutors, SEC enforcement lawyers and leading securities litigators who can act on strategic issues for businesses, as well as industry experts from the financial institutions regulatory and financial products practices.

Featured Matters

Shearman & Sterling advises the world’s leading financial institutions, asset managers and executives on their most significant matters, including many of the most important matters affecting the industry in recent years.

  • Seven major financial institutions in worldwide government investigations and class action litigation related to LIBOR, FX, ISDAfix and Treasury auctions
  • The JP Morgan board in investigations,including the so-called “London Whale” matter, and shareholder derivative litigation
  • Citigroup in government and internal investigations related to its Banamex unit in Mexico
  • Trial and appellate counsel for Todd Newman in connection with the landmark Court of Appeals decision reversing his criminal insider trading conviction, and Supreme Court proceedings in which US Solicitor General’s petition for review of the case was denied
  • Multiple major financial institutions in multi-jurisdictional RMBS and CDO litigations and mortgage-related federal and state government investigations
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