New York state has subpoenaed two of the biggest names in the financial consulting industry, Promontory Financial and PricewaterhouseCoopers, in connection with their work on money-laundering cases, according to a person familiar with the inquiry.
The orders are part of a broader investigation into the consulting industry’s relationship with Wall Street. Consultants are supposed to work at the behest of regulators to provide objective assessments of a firm’s problems. But lawmakers have raised doubts about the independence of consultants handpicked by financial firms accused of wrongdoing.
At the heart of the inquiries issued by the New York Department of Financial Services is whether two prominent consultants acquiesced to client demands and shirked their duties to regulators, according to the person familiar with the case, who was not authorized to talk on the record.
Promontory declined to discuss specifics, but spokeswoman Debra Cope said that “from time to time we get subpoenas” related to client work. She said the firm was not at liberty to divulge the scope of the inquiry. PricewaterhouseCoopers would not comment on the subpoena.