Bank of N.Y., Regulators in Laundering Pact

NEW YORK - Responding to the Russian money-laundering scandal, Bank of New York Co. said Tuesday that it had reached an agreement with regulators to reinforce several of its risk management, internal audit, and compliance procedures."We reaffirm our commitment to meet the highest operating and ethical standards," Thomas A. Renyi, chairman and chief executive officer of the $74 billion-asset banking company, said in announcing the agreement with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the New York State Banking Department.

The agreement, signed by Mr. Renyi and the rest of the company's board, comes in the midst of an investigation into whether eight accounts at Bank of New York were used to launder over $7 billion in funds from Russia to accounts in other countries since 1996.

Neither the Fed nor state banking regulators have imposed penalties on the company.

In testimony before Congress in September, Mr. Renyi acknowledged lapses in the bank's internal monitoring procedures, particularly in relation to its funds transfer and correspondent banking activities.

The company said then and in a statement Tuesday that it was improving controls.

Bank of New York agreed to submit to the Fed and the state department detailed plans on how it will improve such areas as due diligence on customers, compliance on suspicious activity reporting, and risk management and audit procedures for funds transfer and cash management activities. The banking company also agreed to update the Fed and state regulators four times a year on the findings of its money-laundering oversight committee.

- Liz Moyer


Central America to Get Its 1st Virtual Card

SAN MATEO, Calif. - Trintech Group of San Mateo said Tuesday that it would provide a Miami-based credit card processor with Central America's first virtual credit card software.TecniCard Inc., which acquires and processes credit cards for 25 Central American banks, will offer Trintech's NetIssuer/ezCard solution. The product offers automatic form filling of Internet merchant payment pages, enhanced credit card security, and access to other financial services.

Trintech is also powering the virtual credit card product announced last week by Discover Financial Services Inc.

- Helen Stock


DLJdirect to Push into Middle East, N. Africa

JERSEY CITY - DLJdirect, the on-line unit of the New York investment bank Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette Inc., said Tuesday that it formed a three-way joint venture to offer on-line brokerage services to customers in 14 countries in the Middle East and North Africa.The joint venture, to be called DLJdirect-eUnion, is in conjunction with Capital Union EC, an investment bank based in the Bahrain, and Webtrade eVentures Ltd., an e-commerce company that serves Arab nations.


NextCard, On-Line Currency Firm Team Up

SAN FRANCISCO - NextCard Inc. has aligned with Flooz.com, the New York-based creator of gift currency for consumers and businesses on the Web.Along with a marketing alliance, the on-line credit card issuer said Tuesday that it has made a significant minority investment in Flooz.com - its first equity investment in an e-commerce company.

NextCard will offer the Flooz gift currency, which is sent by e-mail and accepted at more than 60 on-line stores, to people who apply for or already have a NextCard. Flooz will exclusively market and promote NextCard to its customers and pay NextCard a referral fee for each new Flooz customer generated by NextCard.

- Helen Stock


Carver of N.Y. Fighting Dissident Slate

NEW YORK - Carver Bancorp urged shareholders to vote against two directors proposed by a dissident shareholder group.In a press release Tuesday, the company said Boston Bank of Commerce is waging a proxy fight to elect two directors at Carver's annual meeting on Feb. 24.

Carver's nominated directors are David N. Dinkins, the former New York mayor, and David. R. Jones.

- Dow Jones

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