Signature Bank, a financial institution known for its cryptocurrency-friendly policies, has been under investigation by two US government agencies before its recent closure.
According to reports, the Department of Justice (DOJ) was looking into whether the bank had taken enough measures to detect potential money laundering by its clients.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) was also conducting its own investigation, but details of its nature were not disclosed.
It remains unclear when the investigations started and whether they played a role in the New York state regulator’s decision to shut down the bank.
Despite this, reports indicate that Signature Bank and its staff are not accused of any wrongdoing, and the investigations may conclude without any charges or further action by the DOJ or SEC.
The news of the investigations came after Signature shareholders filed a class-action lawsuit against the bank and its former executives for falsely claiming to be financially strong before it was forcibly shut down.
Former board member Barney Frank believes that regulators wanted to send an anti-crypto message and that Signature Bank had become the “poster boy” despite having no insolvency based on fundamentals.
Signature Bank’s closure is part of a series of bank closures that also includes Silvergate Capital and Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). Reports suggest that the DOJ and SEC have launched separate investigations into the events leading up to the collapse of these banks.
This includes scrutinizing security filings that disclosed the sale of SVB shares by the firm’s CEO and CFO two weeks before its downfall.