(Reuters) - Regions Financial Corp said the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York is investigating the bank's relationship with a former customer who may have been involved in criminal activity.


The bank said it is cooperating with the probe, which is also looking into related aspects of Regions' Anti-Money Laundering and Bank Secrecy Act compliance program. (http://bit.ly/2vpNy4y)


Regions said it believes that the outcome of the litigation and inquiries will not materially impact the bank's business and its financial position.


Shares of the Birmingham, Alabama-based lender closed marginally up at $14.94 on Friday.


Complying with anti-money laundering rules costs U.S. companies as much as $8 billion a year, the Heritage Foundation estimated in a report last year.


A trade association representing banks, including JPMorgan Chase & Co and Bank of America, earlier this year called for bringing changes to the way money-laundering is fought by the industry and regulators, as it is viewed as an excessive burden.

(Reporting by Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)