There were eight commercial banks in 1994, five of which were foreign, including the Bank of Antigua and the Stanford International Bank. The Antigua and Barbuda Development Bank, wholly owned by the government, began operations in 1975. Currency is issued by the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank. The financial industry suffered in Antigua and Barbuda in 1999, due to fears of money laundering by drug cartels. The government passed the Money Laundering Prevention Amendment in order to protect foreign investment in the sector.
The International Monetary Fund reports that in 2001, currency and demand deposits—an aggregate commonly known as M1—were equal to $125.8 million. In that same year, M2—an aggregate equal to M1 plus savings deposits, small time deposits, and money market mutual funds—was $577.6 million.