Fulton Financial Corp. announced May 23 that the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System has terminated a 2014 consent order issued to Fulton and its bank subsidiary, Lafayette Ambassador Bank.
The termination of the order paves the way for Lafayette Ambassador, headquartered in Bethlehem, to become a part of Fulton Bank, Fulton Financial’s flagship subsidiary, according to Laura Wakeley, communications manager for Fulton Financial, based in Lancaster.
The consent order stemmed from a determination by the Fed that Fulton’s Bank Secrecy Act and anti-money laundering program was unsatisfactory. The program, known as a BSA/AML program, aims to uncover and report suspicious banking activity.
Regulators have now determined that Fulton’s revamped BSA/AML program is capable of detecting suspicious activity, thus prompting termination of the consent order.
“This completes the journey we have been on to strengthen our BSA/AML compliance programs,” said E. Philip Wenger, Fulton Financial’s chairman and CEO. “I want to convey my thanks to our entire team of employees who worked diligently to build the company’s enhanced and sustainable BSA/AML program. With the lifting of this order, the company will be able to move forward with plans to merge the two remaining subsidiary banks into its flagship bank, Fulton Bank, N.A. this fall.”
As Lafayette Ambassador Bank, or LAB, merges with Fulton Bank, Lafayette Ambassador customers should not see any real changes other than a name change, said Wakeley.
“They will continue to work with the same LAB staff at the same locations,” she said. “Since LAB and Fulton Bank have been sister banks under the Fulton Financial umbrella, they already have the same operating procedures, technology platforms, etc., so again, changes will be minimal.”
In addition to being able to merge its subsidiary banks, the termination of the consent order also means that Fulton Financial can now pursue acquisition opportunities. Both of these actions were prohibited while the company and bank were under the order.
Fulton Financial, a $21 billion financial holding company, has approximately 3,600 employees and operates more than 225 branches in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and Virginia through three banking subsidiaries.