17th October 2017

Sigma publishes first-ever financial crime-related rating for Maltese bank

Sigma Ratings has published the first-ever independent financial crime-related rating for Malta-based FIM Bank. This risk rating is the first of its kind. By means of this independent rating on financial crime vulnerability, FIM Bank looks to demonstrate and differentiate the strength of its compliance controls and its efforts to uphold global financial transparency standards.

In this exercise, FIM Bank plc has rated 7.24 (out of 10), placing it in the top quartile of the SATISFACTORY band with a POSITIVE outlook regarding its general financial crime-related risk. The rating notes that the bank broadly has strong financial crime controls in place and has made considerable progress in strengthening its posture particularly over the last two years. FIM Bank is the first bank globally and in Malta to receive a rating of this kind.

Sigma Ratings Chief Executive Officer Stuart Jones, Jr, said: "Our mission is to support global business and banking growth by enhancing transparency and standardising metrics for good corporate behaviour. In an increasingly challenging risk environment, our ratings provide the gold standard that helps streamline the financial crime risk assessment process for financial institutions. If a bank pursues a rating, it's because it wants to demonstrate commitment to openness and the fight against financial crime."

Sigma Ratings uses a proprietary, technology-driven algorithmic approach that is guided by international best practice to arrive at a financial crime vulnerability rating. An independent and expert rating committee reviews the data generated by the lead analysts and assesses a company on a set of common benchmarks around inherent risks and control effectiveness. Much like a "credit rating", a Sigma Rating serves as an indicator of a company's risk management posture and as a signal of transparency for regulators, business partners and clients. Rated companies utilise their ratings to position themselves as market leaders and to benchmark on governance and compliance issues.