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FDIC Refreshes Guidance on High-Risk Customers

Joe Mont | January 29, 2015

Gun merchants, strippers, coin collectors, and payday lenders of the world rejoice. A letter sent to financial institutions from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. this week signals an end to “Operation Choke Point,” a Department of Justice effort to restrict industries deemed as “high risk” from banking access.

The Financial Institution Letter doesn’t mention the controversial initiative by either name or description. Instead, it retreats from the policy with instructions for banks “to take a risk-based approach in assessing individual customer relationships, rather than declining to provide banking services to entire categories of customers without regard to the risks presented by an individual customer or the financial institution's ability to manage the risk.”

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