Banks can now loan to pot shops | AspenTimes.com

Banks can now loan to pot shops

Allison Sherry and David Migoya
The Denver Post

Banks were given a green light Friday to offer services to the legal marijuana industry, but must continue to report any suspicious activity specific to that industry to federal authorities.

The historic step brings marijuana businesses closer to legitimacy in states where pot is already legal, but it falls short of the legislative action many banks want to see before doing business with marijuana operators. That will be up to Congress to consider.

In a joint statement, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, said the move gives “greater financial transparency” to an industry that remains illegal in nearly every state.

It also makes clear that banks would be helping law enforcement with “information that is particularly valuable” in filing regular reports that offer insights about how marijuana businesses work.

“Law enforcement will now have greater insight into marijuana business activity generally,” FinCEN said in a news release, “and will be able to focus on activity that presents high-priority concerns.”

Read more: Feds give historic green light to banks working with marijuana businesses – The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/business/ci_25143792/feds-give-historic-green-light-banks-working-marijuana#ixzz2tKKXlWkq


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