I have read and seen so many articles of late about how the City of London is a dirty cesspit of financial money laundering. This all helps feed the Corbynista mantra about capitalism being pure evil and all money being dirty (unless it is theirs of course...).
A story out today shows how different the world really is. Danske Bank, the largest bank in Denmark, has long been a Baltic retail bank. Today its CEO resigned after many years when it has been suspected of large scale money laundering from its Estonian branches. The thing is, smaller banks have less compliance and less ability to combat fraudsters. In addition, the regulators in Denmark, for example, are not as sharp as those in London. Plus Danske is practically the only large bank so they have the too big to fail disease in a smaller economy such as Denmark.
Of course this does not make London whiter than white. The shear number of properties acquired by Russians in London in particular is beyond belief. The use of tax havens and the London markets to move dirty money around is always going to be an issue. But the realisation today is that it is even more of an issue in smaller and less regulated markets, less sophisticated ones. The money launderers are actually always going to try it on with a small backwater branch somewhere in Eastern Europe rather than try their games with JP Morgan or Barclays in London.
It is a lesson to the regulators of Europe that in reality it will be the Banks of weaker states such as Cyprus, Hungary, Romania etc that will be used for the majority of money laundering - it is these Banks and Countries that are most at risk, but it suits the French and Germans to blame London in a desperate attempt to get more Finance business to Paris and Frankfurt.