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'Pros on the Go', a Fierce Tartan company are seeking insurance partners to pilot its new solution for streamlining the claims process.


Using financial data, Mark Sibthorpe compares the performance of TD bank to its rivals. TD grew faster in 2017 than its rivals, but was cited for aggressive sales practices.


Mr. Michael R. King, Tangerine Chair in Finance and Co-Director, Scotiabank Digital Banking Lab / Ivey Business School at Western University


This video covers XE.com's presentation at the AI, Big Data and Analytics event which took place in Toronto February 7/8, 2018. Cecelia Tamez and Jean Louis provide insights into their evolution and winning strategy.


Greenpeace's campaign to stop TD financing the oil sands is delusional. Trillions of dollars are at stake for the banks and the Canadian economy. This video explores the related financial issues.


This video provides an overview of the main differences between Canada's approach to overland flooding versus the US approach.


Canadian bank overview part 5, medium-large banks. Banks include Manulife, Tangerine and Laurentian Bank.


Canadian banking industry overview of Canadian Tire Bank, Presidents Choice Financial, Equitable Bank, B2B Bank


Overview of small-medium size banks in Canada. Banks covered include Versabank, Hollis Bank, Equity Bank and Caisse Populaire Acadienne.


Review of small banks including Bridgewater,Vancity Bank, Concentra, Wealth One, Zag...


Jamie Dimon calls bitcoin a fraud used by criminals, yet he has jumped into the blockchain with both feet.


RBC invested $24 million into Wave Technologies and now they will roll out Waves accounting, invoicing, reporting and billing platform to SMEs.


Overview of Canadian banking industry. This multi-part series looks at issues facing Canadian banks from a variety of angles. Part 1 examines the types of banks and scale using ROE and EBITDA as measures.


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About BankNews TV: financial services industry monitor (FSIM), analytics and research

Latest news and events for Canadian financial service companies, analytics, fintech and AI. BankNews.TV provide the latest technology news and reports for banks and insurance companies looking to compete in a rapidly changing market.

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Research

Eisman's big Canadian bank short  

fsim.ca/docs/eisman2.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

I have been reporting on Steve Eisman's short position for quite some time.  As the analyst reaction to Eisman shows (link below), Eisman has taken a lot of heat for shorting Canadian banks. Instead of capitulating, in September 2019 he publicly disclosed the fact that he added Canadian Tire to his position, He explains the rationale for this in a BNN interview late 2019. Essentially, his big concern with respect to banks was non-performing loans in Alberta. He feels Canadian bank CEOs are not prepared for a credit cycle. He specifically referenced ATB (a private bank) in discussing his concerns. Looking at the numbers today, my guess is that he has made off like a bandit.


VersaBank Beta-Testing Its New, High Volume Mortgage Finance App   

fsim.ca/docs/VBCortelMortFinanceAppFeb62020.pdf

Press Release

VersaBank announces it is initiating beta-testing on its newly developed high-volume mortgage software app with the Cortel Group, one of Canada’s largest home and condominium builders. The app, named “Direct Connect”, was designed to facilitate and significantly reduce the lengthy finance approval process typically experienced by home buyers when visiting home and condo pre-construction sales offices.


How and why you need to defend your brand against disruptors  

Mark Sibthorpe

Technology, and being open to opportunities, has preempted transformation in banking. At the top of change are Mint, PayPal and ApplePay; three examples of transformative solutions that are now ubiquitous. On the horizon: Uber and Google, both having recently announced partner based banking services. Further down in the plumbing is Duca Impact Labs, Versabank, and Revolut. This report shows how cost conscious FIs can, not only stay relevant in the face of adversity, but punch well above their weight. All thanks to creative thinking and the ongoing commoditization of technology.


Kick the can(nomics)  

fsim.ca/docs/Kick.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Canada has used consumer debt to provide life support to the economy. This strategy which basically pushed the day of reckoning to the next government was old back in 2014, and now is well past its sell-by-date. Recognizing this, and desperate to keep the economy out of a recession, Trudeau is spending more money now than any government in Canadian history. This report disusses a possible alternative.


ScoreCard Bill Morneau, Canada's Minister of Finance  

fsim.ca/docs/ScoreCardMorneau.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

This report is a scorecard I designed in order to rank the performance of the current Minister of Finance, Bill Morneau. I do regular rankings because, otherwise, I cannot measure the performance in a meaningful way. The scoring is based on a variety of metrics as detailed on the ‘score-table’ on page 3. Examples of the criteria and weighting include:

 


Observations and overview of 2018 NB flood support from government and insurance companies.  

fsim.ca/docs/Observations and overview of 2018 NB flood support from government and insurance companies..pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

 


Flood aftermath is linked to post traumatic stress. Here are some findings from a study conducted by Queensland University following a flood:

"The findings showed that aftermath stress contributed to poor mental health outcomes over and above the flood itself, prior mental health issues and demographic factors," Ms Dixon said.

 

"Aftermath stress was the strongest predictor of post-traumatic stress symptoms with 75 per cent of people saying the most difficult aspect was the aftermath and dealing with insurance companies," she said.

 

With this in mind, I felt it was important to understand how New Brunswick flood victims were treated.

 


Update Argentina: a sign of the times  

fsim.ca/docs/Update Argentina_ a sign of the times.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Argentina is in the news daily because the situation is dire, and may be an indication of further contagion. The most dramatic story that speaks of the a leading cause of its troubles was the recent arrest of the public works secretary, Jose Lopez. June 15th he was caught hiding millions in cash in a monastery. No this is not a plot for a comedy.


Summary of Canada's flood news, 2017 to present  

fsim.ca/docs/Summary-of-flood-news-2017-present.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

This report covers flood news in Canada from 2017 to present and highlights the relevent issues for home-owners and the insurance industry.


Banking on Pot  

fsim.ca/docs/c10191_banking-on-pot.pdf

SBS

As states across the US legalize marijuana for both medicinal and recreational purposes, it has fueled a growing industry of marijuana related businesses (MRBs).


Canadian banking industry overview  

Mark Sibthorpe

The industry overview is divided into 5 parts:

Introduction
Small banks
Small medium sized banks
Medium sized banks
Medium large banks


2014 Mobile payments the Apple pay way  

fsim.ca/docs/Mobile_Payments_Apple_Pay_2014.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

With Walmart Pay about to userp Apple Pay, I thought I would share my 2014 book on mobile payments and loyalty. The guilde was written for Merchants that want to understand loyalty, credit, mobile payments and Apple Pay, but anyone involved with credit and loyalty might find it useful.
The book is a prelude to Walmart leaving MCX, and chronicles the evolution that led to Walmart Pay. There is an extensive case study of Walmart that looks into its efforts to become an ILC and to avoid paying credit card transaction fees ('merchant discount').
It offers readers a step-by-step methodology for evaluating and transforming credit and loyalty programs. The strategies are based on proven examples and industry facts. The Nectar, Target, Canadian Tire and Walmart case studies are examples of the practical approach I have taken, written with the intent that merchants can use them as blueprints for their own initiatives. 


Death to bitcoin, long live the blockchain   (See full report)

Mark Sibthorpe

Jamie Dimon calls bitcoin a fraud used by criminals, yet he has jumped into the blockchain with both feet.


TD bank industry conduct  

fsim.ca/docs/tdind2.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

TD’s share price recently collapsed by $7 bn in one day due to CBC’s allegations of aggressive selling tactics. A huge fall from a bank that was trading at a premium as recently as January. This was even before the most recent allegation of TD attempting to avoid paying taxes on advertising.
This report chronicles the events leading up to the collapse, shows TD's performance, analyses other related issues.


Book review: Back from the Brink  

fsim.ca/docs/backbrink.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

This is a book review of the book Back from the Brink by Paul Halpern, Caroline Cakebread, Christopher C. Nicholls and Poonam Puri.


Footnote 151  

fsim.ca/docs/footnote151.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Footnote 151 implies an important regulatory change related to derivative contracts. It means that US Banks will not be required to hold as much capital against commodities. If you want to understand the implications of this regulatory change in more detail, see the enclosed related article detailing the changes. For contextual purposes, I have also included two Rolling Stones Magazines reports from 2010 and 2014 that chronicle the role large US banks have played in manipulating commodities. You might question the credibility of these sources, but rest assured, these reports are based on United States Senate hearings which outline the issues in a 396 page report related to the implied risks. 


Save the Canadian economy now  

fsim.ca/docs/helecopter-money.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Consumer debt spending appears to have insulated Canada from the worst of the credit crisis, but now the alarming magnitude of consumer debt ($1.92-trillion) could exacerbate a day of reckoning.
This report assesses the issues at hand and recommends the solution to get Canada's economy on track.


Reasons financial service companies should consider gamification  

fsim.ca/docs/Gamfin.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Gamification of business processes resulted on Mint.com growing to 10 million users within 4 years. This report explains how.


National Bank Special Report  

fsim.ca/docs/NatBSpec.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

According to Bloomberg, National Bank of Canada will take a C$64 million ($48 million) restructuring charge in the fourth quarter and said its investment in Maple Financial Group Inc., which is being probed by German regulators, may be at risk of a “substantial loss.”


Will Canadian banks charge companies for deposits?  

fsim.ca/docs/depgrowthimpact2.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

In light of today’s possible rate cut, this report discusses how a bank rate cut and capital ratio pressure could precipitate negative corporate deposit interest rates in Canada.


Canadian Tire's (CTC) - Canadian Tire Financial Services (CTFS) Scotia deal overview and risk assess  

fsim.ca/docs/ctfsfinal.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Review of the Canadian Tire Financial Services deal with Scotiabank, risks, opportunity and benefits.


Finance minisiter scorecard August 26, 2015  

fsim.ca/docs/Scorejo-August-2015.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

This report looks at Joe Oliver, minister of finance’s progress to date, and assigns a grade to his government’s performance to date.


Xtreme Branch  

fsim.ca/docs/xbranch.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Branches are evolving to meet the digital age. This documents tracks the evolution with real-world examples.


Canadian Nudge  

fsim.ca/docs/nudge.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Whether he knew it or not, Tom Reid, a senior vice-president at Sun Life, made a case for the behavior modification concept ‘Nudging’ when he recently proposed auto-enrolling Canadians in his company’s pension plans. Sun life cover 1.2 million Canadians, about 60% of the eligible employees.
According to Reid,


CWB cause for concern  

fsim.ca/docs/cwbupdate.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

In an earlier report BankNews.TV expressed concerns about CWB. Here are 5 charts that show cause:
1. First earnings drop in years;
2. Deposits dropping which will increase cost of funds in the future.


BNTV Overview  

fsim.ca/docs/overviewpdf.pdf

BNTV

BankNews.TV Publishing Corp services overview document:

  • Analytics
  • Financial services industry monitor (FSIM) industry briefings and developments reports
  • Research


Challenger banks not a threat to big banks  

fsim.ca/docs/challenger.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

This report looks at Canadian challenger banks (apart from merchant led banks) and explains why they have not threatened larger institutions. It also looks at ways in which these upstarts have achieved success.


Gamification of financial data project  

fsim.ca/docs/GamingEventProposal-printsample--en-final.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

This document contains details on how BankNews.TV is helping kids learn programming via gamification of financial data.


The impact a rate rise will have for Canadian banks  

fsim.ca/docs/irr-f.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Canadian banks have made money throughout the credit crisis, but this trend may be about to reverse. The rational supporting this prediction is that revenue has grown despite a declining net interest margin (NIM). It has grown in spite of this fact because Canadian debt (loan lease volume) has risen significantly, as shown in chart 2.

This report looks at the issues facing Canadian banks in the event of a Bank Rate rise.  


FIFA: the new goldenballs  

fsim.ca/docs/goldenballs.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Yesterday, the Attorney General of Switzerland (OAG) opened criminal proceedings related to the FIFA scandal. This report outlines some of the events related to the criminal investigation, with a particular focus on banking.


Scorecard Minister of Finance: JIm Flaherty  

fsim.ca/docs/Scorecard Min Fin Flaherty April 8 2014.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

March 18, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty resigned from cabinet after having endured a difficult year due to health issues. This report looks at his legacy and attempts to grade his government’s performance to date.


Sample RFP for a Loyalty Program  

fsim.ca/docs/sample RFP for a loyalty program.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe


Merchants extend financial services  

fsim.ca/docs/merchantfs.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Merchant led financial services are growing in importance once again. This is exemplified in the ongoing UK rivalry between ASDA, Sainsbury and Tesco. Together these merchant/financial service companies provide the backstop for three different approaches for merchants looking to extend their financial services.


Hot Money: real-estate  

fsim.ca/docs/hotmoney.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Canadian and London real estate, like Macau, may also be a convenient means for China’s elite to move money offshore; with the deleterious effect of driving up home values. Louise Shelley`s research concurs. In a published paper written for the National Defense University, Shelley argues that money laundering in real estate (MLRE) increases prices.


Currency Cheat Sheet: a guide for the rest of us  

fsim.ca/docs/currencycheatsheet.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Readers of this document will be presented with monetary policy issues and facts
that show the USD will likely remain the dominant reserve currency, despite
questionable Chinese practices, record US debt levels, and a shaky economy.


Riches to Rags? Summary of possible risks for Genworth MI CANADA, INC.  

fsim.ca/docs/gq4risk.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Genworth had its Q4 2014 earnings call. Genworth own about 30% of the mortgage default insurance in Canada. Not surprisingly, the earnings call became focussed on Alberta; and for good reason, with 20% of its outstanding insured mortgage balance in Alberta, sensitivity to the oil shock and how Genworth plan to manage related risks were discussed in detail.


Canadian Western Bank Competitive Forecast  

fsim.ca/docs/cwbf.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Based on historical financial data (see detailed charts pages 5-8), the oil based recession in Alberta, and comparison against two of its peers, this document outlines my observation with respect to CWB’s future performances.


Liquid Canada: the tipping point  

fsim.ca/docs/Liquid.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

This report examines liquidity issues in the Canadian financial service industry.


Bank Fees  

fsim.ca/docs/Bank fees.pdf

Mark Sibthorpe

Recently the CBC and The Globe and Mail both reported on what has been referred to as a consumer “bank fee outcry”. CBC compares banks to cable and phone companies, standing accused of trying to gouge customers with service fees. The backlash appears to have originated in conjunction with the NDP and the Consumers Council of Canada which argues that there is anxiety ‘among consumers about banking fees’.


Cheap Oil Report  

fsim.ca/docs/co2.pdf

Cheap oil has pushed the Bank of Canada's governor, Stephen Poloz onto a slippery slope. For some background on this, take October 22nd, when Poloz bid farewell to forward guidance, resulting in yesterday's surprise rate cut. A cut that has enraged TD and other banks, which see this as eroding profits.
 


Canada's Economy, a strategic solution  

fsim.ca/docs/ces.pdf

This report explores Canada's strategies to compete globally. The report begins with an analyses of the housing market, because housing is the canary in the coal mine; explores what happens in the event of collapse; and analyses the underlying problem causing Canada to be uncompetitive.
 


Complete loyalty RFP  

fsim.ca/docs/booksample.pdf

Merchants that want to understand loyalty, credit and mobile payments should read this book. It offers readers a step-by-step methodology for evaluating and transforming credit and loyalty programs. The strategies are based on proven examples and facts. The Nectar, Target, Canadian Tire and Walmart case studies are examples of the practical approach I have taken, written with the intent that merchants can use them as blueprints for their own initiatives.
 


Mobile Payments Blueprint: guide to credit and loyalty transformation for merchants  

fsim.ca/docs/booksample.pdf

Merchants that want to understand loyalty, credit and mobile payments should read this book. It offers readers a step-by-step methodology for evaluating and transforming credit and loyalty programs. The strategies are based on proven examples and facts. The Nectar, Target, Canadian Tire and Walmart case studies are examples of the practical approach I have taken, written with the intent that merchants can use them as blueprints for their own initiatives.
 


Report on merchants extending financial services  

fsim.ca/docs/

Special report explaining why some merchants in the UK, U.S. and Canada are expanding their financial services. The paper discusses the structural and regulatory pressures facing merchants and explains the rational behind key decisions. This is an 8 page high level report
 


Guide to system selection  

fsim.ca/docs/gssnow.pdf

Read sample report: Guide to system selection. This sample would normally cost $99 but is available free as a sample. Click here view sample report.


News feed

UBS WEALTH BANKERS GET DOSE OF CREDIT SUISSE TONIC IN KHAN PLA

Bloomberg - Patrick Winters and Marion Halftermeyer (2020-12-17)

Colleagues say the Pakistan-born executive is enthusiastic, energetic and talented. Former associates have described him as confident, even overly so. That said, he knows the business from several angles: Khan was a UBS auditor at Ernst & Young and a key competitor at Credit Suisse.


HOW CAN INSURANCE BROKERS USE RATE COMPARISON SITES TO BOOST THEIR BOOKS OF BUSINESS?

Insurance Business - Bethan Moorcraft (2020-12-07)

Enter, rate comparison websites. They’re all the rage in the UK and the USA, where consumers use comparison sites to shop for insurance much like Canadians do when comparing travel costs on sites like Expedia and Trivago. But Canadians are slowly starting to catch on to the insurance comparison trend. They’re searching for and finding platforms like LowestRates.ca, which is enabling consumers to compare insurance premium prices across a number of product lines, primarily in auto and home insurance.


BOAZ MANOR, BUSINESS PARTNER INDICTED ON FRAUD CHARGES IN U.S. OVER BLOCKCHAIN VENTURE

FP - Barbara Shecter (2020-10-20)

Boaz Manor, a former Canadian hedge fund manager who served jail time following the collapse of Portus Alternative Asset Management Inc. in 2005, was indicted Friday on fresh criminal charges in the United States in connection with an alleged securities fraud scheme at an entirely different venture: a New York-based blockchain technology startup.


CHRISTINE LAGARDE GETS A HEAVY POINTER ON HER ECB REVIEW

Bloomberg - Ferdinando Giugliano (2020-06-20)

Nevertheless, Lagarde and her colleagues would be wise to read the staff paper closely. Among all the carefully worded language, one can clearly see the contours of a monetary framework that would work for the ECB’s third decade. These include changing the inflation target to 2%, and maintaining all of the instruments — asset purchases, long-term loans to the banking system and negative interest rates — that the central bank used throughout the presidency of Lagarde’s predecessor, Mario Draghi. 

The argument for a symmetric inflation target is rooted in the power of expectations. The ECB at the moment aims to reach an inflation rate “close to but below 2%.” This means that, as price pressures start climbing toward 2%, investors and consumers expect the ECB to react aggressively, tightening monetary policy to push inflation back. The authors believe this served the ECB well during its first decade, when it had to establish its reputation and fight off inflationary forces. However, the objective has been less useful in today’s era of persistently low inflation. It may even be counterproductive. Consumers and investors don’t expect the central bank to act so decisively to counter deflation.  


WEB OF DEALS: PACE CREDIT UNION EXECUTIVES COMMITTED CIVIL FRAUD WITH YEARS OF ‘SECRET’ PAYMENTS, REGULATOR ALLEGES

G&M - James Bradshaw (2020-04-23)

It is a convoluted web of suspect dealings and payments that stretches back more than two decades.


HOW BAD WILL CANADA'S COVID-19 RECESSION BE?

CBC - Pete Evans (2020-03-27)

Under a more pessimistic scenario, the board sees lockdowns and quarantines stretching for up to six months, until August. If that happens, the GDP hit would be massive — an annualized contraction rate of 9.6 per cent in the second quarter, which is worse than what we saw in the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009. The economy shrank at an annual pace of 8.7 per cent at its worst stage, in early 2009 before rebounding starting in the spring.


HOW COVID-19 IMPACTS SURETY BOND PLACEMENT

Canadian Underwriter - Greg Mechbach (2020-03-27)

“Anyone who is seriously engaged in the surety business in this country has the ability to provide electronic bonds or digital bonds,” said Ness. “And if you are not, my message to you is: ‘The world is not going to sit still for you. Get yourself into the 21st century if you want to keep doing business.’”


INSURANCE COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA DECLARES COVID-19 AN ‘INSURANCE CATASTROPHE’

Insurance Business - IB (2020-03-27)

It believes the virus and the implications of it are ‘catastrophic’ for the insurance industry.  The council stated that the extent of claims and losses related to the coronavirus is unknown at this point but it also announced that an insurance industry taskforce has been formed to ensure that accurate claims data is captured by the industry, and that insurers’ positions on the virus can be understood by stakeholders.


OTTAWA EXPECTS 4 MILLION CANADIANS TO APPLY FOR EMERGENCY JOB LOSS FUND DUE TO COVID-19

G&M - Daniel Leblanc (2020-03-26)

Ottawa is bracing for an influx of four million applications under a new relief fund that will pay $2,000 a month to workers who have lost income because of the COVID-19 pandemic, even as the existing employment insurance program is struggling to cope with a recent surge of applications.


‘OUR MOMENT OF TRUTH’: CIBC’S VICTOR DODIG ON THE BANK’S ROLE IN COPING WITH CORONAVIRUS

G&M - James Bradshaw (2020-03-26)

The chief executive of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce says banks are facing their “moment of truth” as they are thrust into a central role in keeping businesses and families afloat long enough to ride out a fast-moving public health emergency.


1 IN 3 CANADIANS WORRY THEY'LL MISS RENT OR MORTGAGE PAYMENT DUE TO COVID-19 — SURVEY

CBC - Pete Evans (2020-03-26)

More than a third (34 per cent) of respondents said they were worried about missing a rent or mortgage payment this month because of the virus, which has caused widespread layoffs and a drastic reduction in the amount of paid work available for those lucky enough to have kept their jobs.


MORTGAGE RATES ON THE RISE AGAIN AS CORONAVIRUS AND OIL SHOCK WEIGH ON LENDERS' MINDS

FP - Geoff Zochodne (2020-03-26)

Lenders had dropped rates to historic lows this month as the central bank twice cut its key interest rate, ultimately lowering it to 0.75 per cent, one of the lowest levels on record. But starting last week, mortgage lenders across the country began hiking again, according to James Laird, co-founder of mortgage comparison website RateHub.ca and president of brokerage CanWise Financial.


U.S. SENATE PASSES $2 TRILLION BILL FOR 'STRANGE AND EVIL' CORONAVIRUS CRISIS

Reuters - Richard Cowan, David Morgan, Patricia Zengerle (2020-03-26)

The U.S. Senate on Wednesday unanimously backed a $2 trillion bill aimed at helping unemployed workers and industries hurt by the coronavirus epidemic, as well as providing billions of dollars to buy urgently needed medical equipment.


BANK OF ENGLAND, UK TO SIGNAL MORE RADICAL ACTION AGAINST CORONAVIRUS SLUMP

Reuters - William Schomberg (2020-03-26)

The Bank of England is expected to say on Thursday that it is ready to take further radical action to prop up the economy and Britain’s finance minister will announce help for self-employed workers hit by the coronavirus shutdown.


IN STUNNING TURNAROUND, CANADIAN STOCKS SURGE TOWARD BULL MARKET

Bloomberg - Divya Balji and Aoyon Ashraf (2020-03-26)

Canada’s stock market surged for a second day, putting it on the cusp of a bull market, as investors saw hope that government spending plans will bolster a global economy hit by the coronavirus pandemic.


ROYAL BANK OF CANADA SUED BY REIT OVER CMBS MARGIN CALLS

Bloomberg - Chris Dolmetsch (2020-03-26)

Royal Bank of Canada is using the coronavirus pandemic to seize a large portfolio of assets at rock-bottom prices, a New York real estate investment trust claims.


THE GOLD MARKET IS BEING TESTED LIKE NEVER BEFORE

Bloomberg - Jack Farchy, Elena Mazneva, and Mark Burton (2020-03-26)

From South Africa’s ultra-deep mine shafts to vaults underneath London, from metals traders in New York skyscrapers to main-street sellers of coins: the global gold market is being tested like never before.


TRAVEL INSURERS WILL CONTINUE TO PROVIDE INDIVIDUAL HEALTH INSURANCE FOR TRUCKERS

Insurance-Portal.ca - IIJ (2020-03-26)

Last week, life and health insurers clarified that out-of-country medical coverage would continue uninterrupted for commercial truckers covered by workplace, or group insurance policies.


SMALL BUSINESS CONFIDENCE PLUNGES

Insurance-Portal.ca - IIJ (2020-03-26)

"March 2020 has turned out to be a month like no other in Canada's economic history," said Ted Mallett, CFIB's vice-president and chief economist. "Small business sentiment has never been this low in the Business Barometer's 32-year history, including during the 2008 and 1990 recessions."


BMO ANNOUNCES FINANCIAL RELIEF FOR CANADIAN BUSINESSES

Investment Executive - Maddie Johnson (2020-03-26)

Dedicated relief measures include tailored programs for both small and medium-sized businesses, which may include payment deferrals on loans, lines of credit and access to additional working capital. 


CMHC EXPANDING INSURED MORTGAGE PURCHASE PROGRAM TO $150-BILLION, UP FROM $50-BILLION

G&M - CP (2020-03-26)

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. is expanding its insured mortgage purchase program to $150 billion as part of its response to the COVID-19 crisis.


HUMBLE GICS GO FROM SCHLUB TO STUD IN JUST FOUR WEEKS AS STOCKS TUMBLE

G&M - Rob Carrick (2020-03-26)

Guaranteed investment certificates are the investing world’s version of the Keep Calm and Carry On sign.


PETER TERTZAKIAN: THE CRISIS FACING CANADA’S OILPATCH ISN’T JUST THE INDUSTRY’S PROBLEM, IT’S EVERYBODY’S PROBLEM

FP - Peter Tertzakian (2020-03-26)

Oil markets worldwide are under extreme stress. First, there’s the price war waged by The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries — a deluge of barrels thrown into markets opportunistically during the COVID-19 pandemic.


DEUTSCHE BANK STUDIES STATE AID FOR STAFF IN CORONAVIRUS CRISIS

Reuters - Reuters (2020-03-26)

Short-time work is a form of state aid that allows employers to switch employees to shorter working hours during an economic downturn to keep them on the payroll. It has been widely used by industry, including Germany’s car sector, but not by banks.


CANADA’S BIG BANKS FIELD MORE THAN 200,000 MORTGAGE DEFERRAL REQUESTS

G&M - James Bradshaw (2020-03-26)

Canada’s largest banks are fielding a deluge of requests to defer payments on mortgages as businesses suffer from efforts to curb the spread of the new coronavirus and job losses multiply.


CMHC TRIPLES THE SIZE OF ITS MORTGAGE-PURCHASE PROGRAM TO $150-BILLION

G&M - Patrick Brethour (2020-03-26)

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. is tripling the size of its program to buy insured mortgage pools to $150-billion, more than double the amount the Crown corporation bought during the 2008 financial crisis.


TRUDEAU ASKS BANKS TO WORK TO ALLEVIATE THE BURDEN OF CREDIT-CARD INTEREST RATES

G&M - Bill Curry, James Bradshaw (2020-03-26)

The federal government is in talks with banks to find ways to alleviate the burden of credit-card interest rates for Canadians facing financial stresses caused by COVID-19, the Prime Minister’s Office said Thursday.


CANADA’S 10 BIGGEST PENSION FUNDS HAVE LOST AN ESTIMATED $104 BILLION IN PUBLIC EQUITY AMID MARKET CHAOS

FP - Zane Schwartz (2020-03-26)

When the S&P 500 closed at a record high on February 19, Canada’s major pension plans, with more than a quarter of their investments in stocks, were in a comfortable position in spite of the looming coronavirus pandemic.


FED BALANCE SHEET TOPS $5 TRILLION FOR FIRST TIME AS IT ENTERS CORONAVIRUS WAR MODE

Reuters - Dan Burns (2020-03-26)

The Fed’s total balance sheet size exploded by more than half a trillion dollars in a single week, roughly twice the pace of the next-largest weekly expansion in the financial crisis in October 2008. As of Wednesday, the Fed’s stash of assets totaled $5.3 trillion, according to data released on Thursday.


CAPITAL ONE GOT CFTC WAIVER AFTER OIL PRICE PLUNGE INCREASED SWAP EXPOSURE - SOURCES

Reuters - Chris Prentice, Divika Krishna Kumar (2020-03-26)

On Friday, the CFTC said it would temporarily exempt a U.S. bank from a requirement to register as a “Major Swap Participant” even though its growing energy swaps exposure would technically require it to do so by the end of the next quarter.


ECB BEGINS NEW BOND PURCHASES, THROWING WEIGHT BEHIND VIRUS-HIT NATIONS

WSJ - Tom Fairless, Laurence Norman (2020-03-26)

The European Central Bank sent a powerful signal to investors that it will aggressively support Italy and other indebted eurozone countries that are battling the coronavirus, starting purchases under a new €750 billion ($812 billion) bond-buying program.


REGULATORS TRY TO EASE FINANCIAL-REPORTING BURDENS

WSJ - Julie Steinberg (2020-03-26)

U.K. regulators gave listed companies an extra two months to publish audited annual financial reports amid uncertainties caused by the new coronavirus.


ABN AMRO TAKES $200 MILLION LOSS ON U.S. CLIENT

WSJ - Ben Dummett (2020-03-26)

The Dutch lender said it will take a $200 million net loss after a U.S.  client of its clearing division couldn’t meet a margin call on a loan, the latest evidence of how the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic is spreading through the financial system.


FINANCIAL SERVICES ROUNDUP: MARKET TALK

WSJ - WSJ (2020-03-26)

The latest Market Talks covering Financial Services. Exclusively on Dow Jones Newswires at 4:20 ET, 12:20 ET and 16:50 ET.


BANKS CALL FOR FREEZE ON UK HOUSING MARKET

FT - James Pickford, Nicholas Megaw, Jim Pickard, Stephen Morris (2020-03-26)

Banks are pressing for a full suspension of the housing market after the UK government told buyers and sellers to delay transactions because of the coronavirus outbreak.  In talks between lenders and ministers, banks have expressed concern about the impact of the pandemic on valuations.


WEWORK LEFT WITH $4.4BN AFTER BURNING $1.4BN LAST QUARTER

FT - Eric Platt and Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson (2020-03-26)

n October SoftBank injected $1.5bn of cash into WeWork as part of an emergency bailout that gave it control of the group.


BANS ON SHORT SELLING ARE HANDOUTS TO THE ‘CORPORATE SOCIALISTS’

FT - Carson Block (2020-03-26)

Many of these big companies — let us call them corporate socialists, or CorpSocs — surely understand that the vast majority of selling during this market rout has been from investors with long positions. It is almost amusing to those of us in the short-seller community that anybody thinks we have enough capital to put real selling pressure on the market.


CANADIAN HOUSEHOLD DEBT GETS BIGGEST INTEREST RATE DROP SINCE THE FINANCIAL CRISIS

Better Dwelling - Daniel Wong (2020-03-26)

The effective rate of interest paid by households is dropping very quickly. The rate fell to 3.24% for the week ending March 22, down 12.43% from the month before This represents a decline of 18.79% from last year. If that seems like a big drop, it is – we haven’t seen something like this outside of a global financial crisis.


BAY STREET DROPS IN GLOBAL RANKINGS

Investment Executive - James Langton (2020-03-26)

In this year’s rankings of global competitiveness, Toronto dropped 12 spots, falling to 23 from 11 last year.


ALMOST HALF THE WORLD’S AIRLINES WILL RUN OUT OF CASH AND FAIL IN COMING WEEKS WITHOUT GOVERNMENT AID, AIR CARRIER GROUP SAYS

G&M - Eric Atkins (2020-03-25)

The COVID-19 pandemic has slashed airline revenues by US$250-billion as governments close borders and ground most international air travel, said Alexandre de Juniac, head of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), who called on governments to “act and act quickly.”


BMO, EXPORT DEVELOPMENT CANADA ANNOUNCE FINANCIAL RELIEF MEASURES FOR SMALL- AND MEDIUM-SIZED BUSINESSES

G&M - James Bradshaw, Christine Dobby (2020-03-25)

One of Canada’s largest banks and the country’s export credit agency are rolling out targeted relief for small- and medium-sized businesses amid mounting calls for help coping with the intensifying economic fallout from the new coronavirus.


COVID-19: ACTIONS TO SUPPORT THE ECONOMY AND FINANCIAL SYSTEM

BOC - BOC (2020-03-25)

Learn about the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Bank’s actions to support the Canadian economy and financial system.


OSFI ANNOUNCES MEASURES TO SUPPORT THE RESILIENCE OF FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS

OSFI - OSFI (2020-03-25)

One of these requirements was the creation of the Domestic Stability Buffer (DSB) requirement for domestic systemically important banks (D-SIBs). The DSB’s countercyclical design enables D-SIBs to use the capital they have built up during good times when it may be needed most.


CONSUMERS COULD FACE HIT TO CREDIT SCORES, JUMP IN PAYMENTS FROM MORTGAGE DEFERRALS

CBC - Aaron Saltzman (2020-03-25)

Canadians couldn't get answers on mortgage deferrals at Canada's biggest bank because information and eligibility requirements kept changing almost by the hour, a source who works for RBC tells CBC News.


‘SHOCK AND AWE’ FROM THE FED — AND THE LIMITS OF EASY MONEY

G&M - Ian McGugan (2020-03-24)

The U.S. Federal Reserve’s promise of unprecedented support for debt markets wasn’t enough to lift global stock markets on Monday, as a stimulus bill stalled in Congress and cases of the novel coronavirus continued to mount.


TD BANK TO PAY BONUSES TO BRANCH WORKERS WHO DEAL WITH THE PUBLIC

G&M - James Bradshaw (2020-03-24)

Toronto-Dominion Bank will pay one-time bonuses worth up to $1,000 to staff who work in branches, call centres and other operations that put them at greater risk of exposure to the new coronavirus.


MORTGAGE PROCESSOR FILOGIX HACKED AMID SURGE IN LOAN REQUESTS

G&M - Rachelle Younglai (2020-03-24)

A major mortgage processing system in Canada was hit by a cyberattack last week, temporarily halting loan applications from brokerages already under immense pressure after the central bank slashed interest rates.


BROOKFIELD ASSET MANAGEMENT SHIFTING INVESTMENT FOCUS TO PUBLICLY TRADED DEBT, STOCKS AS MARKETS TUMBLE

G&M - David Milstead (2020-03-24)

Brookfield Asset Management Inc. chief executive officer Bruce Flatt says his company is moving away from private assets and buying publicly traded debt and stocks – including its own – in the recent market carnage.


STOCK MARKETS LOSE GROUND AGAIN MONDAY DESPITE U.S. CENTRAL BANK PLEDGE TO DO 'WHATEVER IT TAKES'

CBC - Reuters (2020-03-24)

The stock market slide deepened on Monday as the rapidly spreading coronavirus forced more U.S. states into lockdown, overshadowing unprecedented moves by the U.S. Federal Reserve to shore up credit across the economy.


CANADIAN BANKS SEE LARGEST ECONOMIC CONTRACTION SINCE 1960S

Bloomberg - Shelly Hagan (2020-03-24)

Some of Canada’s largest banks are revising down their growth forecasts once again as industry shutdowns and layoffs suggest the recession will be deeper than originally expected.


JP MORGAN ON HIRING FREEZE

Bloomberg - Michelle F Davis (2020-03-24)

JPMorgan Chase & Co. froze hiring across most of the firm as millions of people stay at home to help stem the spread of the coronavirus, according to people familiar with the matter.


CANADIAN HELOC BORROWING WAS GRINDING TO A HALT BEFORE THE COVID-19 CRISIS

Better Dwelling - Daniel Wong (2020-03-24)

The balance of loans secured by residential real estate actually fell in the month. The credit outstanding stood at $303.08 billion in January, down 0.31% from the month before. Compared to the same month last year, this is a 1.82% increase. Yes, negative growth for the month, and annual growth is negative in real terms. The point worth noting in this report is, households had already begun to cool on borrowing against their home prior to the COVID-19 outbreak.


CANADA LIFE SUSPENDS REAL ESTATE FUNDS UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

Investment Executive - Maddie Johnson (2020-03-24)

Winnipeg-based Canada Life Assurance Company temporarily suspended contributions, transfers and redemptions for its Canadian real estate investment funds on Friday. 


OUTLOOK ON CANADIAN BANKS TURNS NEGATIVE: FITCH

Investment Executive - James Langton (2020-03-24)

In particular, the outlook revisions reflect both a “significant deterioration in the Canadian operating environment” and uncertainty about how long the negative economic effects may last, Fitch said.


FED TO BUY AS MUCH GOVERNMENT DEBT AS NEEDED TO AID ECONOMY

Investment Executive - Christopher Rugaber (2020-03-24)

The Fed’s announcement Monday removes any dollar limits from its plans to support the flow of credit through an economy that has been ravaged by the viral outbreak. The central bank’s all-out effort has now gone beyond even the extraordinary drive it made to rescue the economy from the 2008 financial crisis.


REVOLUT AND MONZO REFUTE RUMOURS OF IMMINENT COLLAPSE; REVOLUT LAUNCHES IN US

Finextra - Finextra (2020-03-24)

A report published yesterday by Rosenblatt Securities forecast that the Covid-19 effect would have a devastating impact on fintech valuations. The analyst note estimated that a protracted downturn could wipe $76 billion of Unicorn market value and spur a wave of M&A activity in the sector. Marketplace lenders, digital wealth management firms and challenger banks would all be in the firing lines the report stated.


UNEMPLOYMENT CLAIMS REACH NEARLY ONE MILLION AS BUSINESSES BATTERED BY PANDEMIC

G&M - DAVID PARKINSON (2020-03-24)

Nearly one million Canadians applied for unemployment benefits in the past week, as sweeping COVID-19-related business shutdowns deliver an unprecedented blow to the country’s work force.


AT MIDDAY: TSX JUMPS OVER 8% AS BOUNDLESS FED BOND-BUYING FUELS REBOUND

G&M - Sajata Rao (2020-03-24)

Canada’s main stock index jumped on Tuesday, as hopes of further stimulus measures from major economies, after U.S. Federal Reserve offered unlimited bond buying, helped shore up demand for riskier assets.


LIBERALS RETREAT ON SWEEPING BILL TO ALLOW THEM TO TAX AND SPEND WITHOUT PARLIAMENT’S APPROVAL

G&M - Bill Curry, Robert Fife (2020-03-24)

The Liberal government announced late Monday that it has agreed to change draft legislation that proposed to grant itself wide-reaching new powers to tax and spend without parliamentary approval until Dec. 31, 2021, through an emergency spending bill.


BANKS GET BREAK THEY NEEDED ON LOAN WORKOUTS

American Banker - John Reosti (2020-03-24)

In the aftermath of the financial crisis, restructured loans at banks topped $140 billion at the end of 2011. Clearly, regulators are hoping to head off a similar surge due to the coronavirus outbreak.


NON-BANK LENDERS WILL BEAR BRUNT OF CREDIT CRISIS

FT - FT (2020-03-24)

Regulators scrambled to strengthen the banking system after the 2008 financial crisis.


UK INVESTMENT TRUSTS AT STEEPEST DISCOUNTS SINCE FINANCIAL CRISIS

FT - Madison Darbyshire (2020-03-24)

Share prices of UK investment trusts have fallen to their steepest discount to underlying asset values since the financial crisis after a bruising market sell off.


MORTGAGE INVESTMENT FUNDS BECOME ‘EPICENTRE’ OF CRISIS

FT - Robert Armstrong (2020-03-24)

Real estate investment trusts that specialise in buying mortgage-backed securities are playing a prominent role in the current market turmoil, dumping their holdings in response to margin calls by their banks. The mortgage Reits entered the coronavirus crisis owning an estimated $500bn of bonds backed by property loans and have come under pressure because they use short-term borrowings to squeeze higher returns from their holdings.


FED LEANS ON COMMUNITY BANKS FOR VIRUS RELIEF

FT - Brendan Greenley (2020-03-24)

While the Federal Reserve has promised to pump trillions of dollars through large banks to keep financial markets moving, and rolled out support for large company debt, perhaps the most serious economic aspect of the coronavirus crisis is yet to be solved: how to get funds all the way to families and small businesses bearing the brunt of the shutdowns across America.


RBC EMPLOYEES CONCERNED ABOUT CROWDED OFFICES, SHARED COMPUTERS AFTER CO-WORKERS TEST POSITIVE FOR COVID-19

FP - Zane Schwartz (2020-03-24)

“We share computers, we share chairs, our desks are all squished in together,” Kinza Hanif, a former RBC adviser at the bank’s Meadowvale campus in Mississauga, Ont., told The Logic.


BANK OF CANADA EXTENDS ASSET BUYING TO PROVINCIAL MONEY MARKETS

Bloomberg - Theophilos Argitis and Erik Hertzberg (2020-03-24)

The Bank of Canada said it will start acquiring provincially-issued money market securities, the latest in a series of steps to smooth friction from the nation’s financial system.


CORONAVIRUS AND FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS—HOW COMPLIANCE PROGRAMS SHOULD RESPOND

Bloomberg - Joanne Taylor (2020-03-24)

As in any time of transition, internal communication is key. AFC leaders need to reiterate the scenarios in which AFC approvals are needed—such as for transactions to proceed—and that these approval requirements still stand regardless of Covid-19’s impact. This mitigates the risk that a deal maker within an organization will decide to bypass normal approval channels.


‘IT’S PRETTY CATASTROPHIC’: CANADA HAS NEVER SEEN JOB LOSSES LIKE THIS BEFORE

G&M - Tavia Grant, Matt Lundy (2020-03-23)

Canada has never seen anything like this before.


CORONAVIRUS CARNAGE TAKES TOLL ON PENSIONS

G&M - David Milstead (2020-03-23)

Canadian pension plans have seen their funding crater in recent weeks amid falling interest rates and a meltdown in stock markets, leaving some with shortfalls just weeks after being fully funded. Consulting firm Mercer Canada Ltd. said its pension health index closed 2019 at 112 per cent -- a reading that suggests the plans were over-funded, with more assets than obligations -- up 10 percentage points over the course of the year. It was 103 per cent on Feb. 29, but had fallen to 89 per cent on Monday, March 16.


OTTAWA RECEIVES 500,000 NEW APPLICATIONS FOR EMPLOYMENT INSURANCE AS CORONAVIRUS-RELATED LAYOFFS INCREASE

G&M - DAVID PARKINSON (2020-03-23)

A half-million Canadian workers filed for Employment Insurance benefits in the past four days alone, as evidence of the deep job losses related to COVID-19 quickly piled up and companies from a wide range of industries announced even more layoffs.


BUSINESS CONSUMERS COULD FACE HIT TO CREDIT SCORES, JUMP IN PAYMENTS FROM MORTGAGE DEFERRALS

CBC - Aaron Saltzman (2020-03-23)

Canadians couldn't get answers on mortgage deferrals at Canada's biggest bank because information and eligibility requirements kept changing almost by the hour, a source who works for RBC tells CBC News..


TD BANK EMPLOYEES WORRY CALL CENTRES ARE 'BREEDING GROUND' FOR COVID-19

CBC - Colin Butler (2020-03-23)

Employees at TD Bank say hundreds of people are working less than a metre apart in some cases, while sharing the same desks, equipment, kitchens, eating areas and washrooms, making their workplace a potential "breeding ground" for the coronavirus. 


EVEN CANADA'S BIG BANKS ARE FACING CHALLENGES IN SCALING UP REMOTE-WORK CAPABILITIES

FP - Vanmala Subramaniam (2020-03-23)

At CIBC, an internal email sent by management to some employees on Thursday morning, stated that employees not in a “critical or vital” role would have to ensure that they are logged off CIBC systems by 9:30 a.m. ET and take a “flexible approach” to work that involves using “remote access only prior to 9:30 a.m. ET and after 5 p.m. ET to access documents, then work offline during the day.”


BANKS WARNED OFF BUYBACKS, DIVIDEND HIKES AS CAPITAL BUFFER LOOSENED FOR CRISIS

FP - Geoff Zochodne (2020-03-23)

“This action is being taken in order to support (domestic systemically important banks’) ability to supply credit to the economy during an expected period of disruption related to COVID-19 and market conditions,” OSFI said in a news release, adding that the release of the buffer would support more than $300 billion of extra lending capacity by the big banks.


GOLDMAN INJECTS $1 BILLION INTO OWN MONEY-MARKET FUNDS AFTER HEAVY WITHDRAWALS

Reuters - Tim McLaughlin (2020-03-23)

The bank repurchased securities from its two funds on Thursday after investors withdrew a net $8.1 billion from them during a four-day stretch, according to the disclosure.


THIS IS NO 2008: MNUCHIN BORROWS FROM PAULSON'S ECONOMIC CRISIS PLAYBOOK

Reuters - David Lawder, Andrea Shalal (2020-03-23)

Mnuchin has closely followed the financial crisis playbook used by Paulson when he led the Treasury Department in 2008, reactivating Federal Reserve credit market backstops and asking Congress for $1 trillion to prop up companies and consumers as the economy grinds to a halt due to the spread of the virus.


DEUTSCHE BANK WARNS VIRUS MAY 'MATERIALLY' IMPACT TARGETS

Reuters - Reuters (2020-03-23)

“We may be materially adversely affected by a protracted downturn in local, regional or global economic condition,” the bank said in its annual report.


REAL ESTATE BILLIONAIRE BARRACK SAYS COMMERCIAL MORTGAGES ON BRINK OF COLLAPSE

Bloomberg - Eric Schatzker (2020-03-23)

Real estate billionaire Tom Barrack said the U.S. commercial-mortgage market is on the brink of collapse and predicted a “domino effect” of catastrophic economic consequences if banks and government don’t take prompt action to keep borrowers from defaulting.


TWENTY-NINE DAYS OF CARNAGE: THE CANADIAN MARKET ROUT IN CHARTS

Bloomberg - Divya Balji and Paula Sambo (2020-03-23)

One month into an historic rout that has wiped nearly C$1 trillion ($690 billion) off Canada’s S&P/TSX Composite Index, investors are struggling to make sense of what just happened -- let alone where we go from here.


SWEDBANK PROBE UNEARTHS $40 BILLION OF ‘HIGH RISK’ PAYMENTS

Bloomberg - Charles Daly (2020-03-23)

An investigation paid for by Swedbank AB into allegations of financial crime found that client transactions totaling 36.7 billion euros ($40 billion) represented a “high risk” of money laundering.


BANKS CONTINUE TO SEEK LESS FUNDING THAN FED OFFERS

WSJ - Michael S. Derby (2020-03-23)

Wall Street’s biggest banks continued to seek far less temporary liquidity from the Federal Reserve on Friday than the central bank was willing to provide.


THESE INSURERS SHOULD KEEP SOME RESISTANCE TO CORONAVIRUS

WSJ - Telis Demos (2020-03-23)

There may be increasing pressure on property-and-casualty insurers whose policies on face don’t cover pandemic risk to pay up, but overall they are standouts among financials.


FED RAMPS UP BOND BUYS, INDICATING MUCH LARGER PURCHASES ARE LIKELY

WSJ - Nick Timiroas (2020-03-23)

The Federal Reserve is likely to significantly boost its government-bond purchases beyond the $500 billion minimum it committed Sunday to buy amid market strains that sent interest rates higher in recent days.


NEGOTIATIONS FALTER OVER $2TN US STIMULUS DEAL

FT - James Politi and Lauren Fedor (2020-03-23)

The negotiations hit an impasse on Sunday after Democrats on Capitol Hill said that the proposed deal offered big business an overly generous bailout with limited conditions and scant oversight.


MUTUAL FUND SEEKS OFFERS ON $1BN OF MORTGAGE BONDS

FT - Joe Rennison, Robert Smith (2020-03-23)

Filings show that at the end of last year, 60 per cent of the fund was invested in “legacy” residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS), which were first sold to investors before the last financial crisis began in 2008.


BANKS, INSURERS PLAN VIRTUAL AGMS

Investment Executive - James Langton (2020-03-23)

The Big Six banks, along with Canadian Western Bank and Laurentian Bank, and the large insurers (Canada Life, Manulife and Sun Life) announced that they’ve secured a joint court order that will enable them to hold their annual meetings electronically.


S&P DOWNGRADES CI FINANCIAL

Investment Executive - James Langton (2020-03-23)

The rating agency said that CI’s assets under management (AUM) have “declined meaningfully over the past several weeks,” and that it expects this to continue thanks to the recent market turmoil.


U.S. FED AIMS ‘BAZOOKA’ AT CORONAVIRUS TO BACKSTOP ECONOMY

G&M - Howard Schneider (2020-03-23)

“It’s their bazooka moment,” said Russell Price, chief economist at Ameriprise Financial Services in Troy, Michigan. “It’s their ‘we’ll do whatever it takes’ moment which should be a sign to financial markets and investors that the Fed will provide any and all liquidity necessary to support the economy through this period.”


CONSUMERS COULD FACE HIT TO CREDIT SCORES, JUMP IN PAYMENTS FROM MORTGAGE DEFERRALS

CBC - Aaron Saltzman (2020-03-23)

Canadians couldn't get answers on mortgage deferrals at Canada's biggest bank because information and eligibility requirements kept changing almost by the hour, a source who works for RBC tells CBC News.


IT’S TIME FOR INVESTORS TO START SAYING THE D-WORD — THIS ECONOMIC DAMAGE COULD BE DOUBLE 2008

FP - David Rosenberg (2020-03-23)

I find it fascinating that so many pundits are willing to tell their clients to stay the course after more than a 30-per-cent market meltdown. They have been saying the same thing the whole way through, and my wager is that they will tell you the same claptrap through the next 30 per cent decrease.


CANADIAN BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC NEWS FROM THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

FP - James McLeod (2020-03-23)

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to force drastic social distancing measures, the economic ramifications continue to unfold. Financial Post technology reporter James McLeod is maintaining a liveblog of market updates and key developments for Canadian business. 


CANADIAN BANKS SEE LARGEST ECONOMIC CONTRACTION SINCE 1960S

Bloomberg - Shelly Hagan (2020-03-23)

Some of Canada’s largest banks are revising down their growth forecasts once again as industry shutdowns and layoffs suggest the recession will be deeper than originally expected.


SHUTDOWN OF CANADA’S ECONOMIC ENGINE SENDS STOCKS TO 2011 LOW

Bloomberg - Aoyon Ashraf and Michael Bellusci (2020-03-23)

Canadian stocks plunged to their lowest level in almost nine years as investors digested a slew of bad news that signaled a massive slowdown in economic growth for the year.


TD WATERHOUSE FACES $4-MILLION FINE OVER IMPROPER DISCLOSURES, RAISING QUESTIONS OF POTENTIAL SYSTEMIC PROBLEMS

G&M - Greg Mcarthur (2020-03-23)

A regulatory panel has ordered TD Waterhouse Canada Inc. to pay a $4-million fine for disclosure errors in the quarterly statements of 175,000 client accounts, raising concerns about “possible systemic weakness” in the investment firm’s governance systems.


TD, SCOTIABANK ISSUE $11 BILLION OF REPO-ELIGIBLE BONDS

Yahoo Finance - Estaban Duarte (2020-03-23)

TD, the country’s second-largest bank by assets, issued C$10 billion ($6.9 billion) of floating-rate covered bonds maturing in 1.5 and 3 years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Bank of Nova Scotia priced C$.5.5 billion of 2-year fixed-rate and 3-year floating-rate covered bonds, the data show.


TRUMP CONSIDERS DEFYING HEALTH EXPERTS, ENDING SOCIAL DISTANCING AMID CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

Huffington Post - Lydia O'connor (2020-03-23)

Larry Kudlow, Trump’s top economic adviser, made the rounds on cable news Monday morning pushing that narrative. “The president is right,” he said on Fox News. “The cure can’t be worse than the disease, and we’re going to have to make some difficult tradeoffs.” Later on CNBC, he said, “At some point, you have to ask yourself whether the shutdown is doing more harm than good.”


OTTAWA PREPARES MULTIBILLION-DOLLAR BAILOUT OF OIL AND GAS SECTOR

G&M - Robert Fife, Emma Graney (2020-03-20)

One senior Alberta source said the province is expecting Ottawa to provide $15-billion in relief to an industry that has been hammered by the COVID-19 crisis and the price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia that has cratered oil prices and energy-company stocks.


BANK OF CANADA ASKS RETAILERS TO STOP REFUSING CASH PAYMENTS OVER VIRUS FEARS

G&M - Clare O'Hara (2020-03-20)

The Bank of Canada is “strongly” urging retailers to stop refusing cash payments to ensure all Canadians have access to the necessary goods and services they need.


OPEN HOUSES GOING EXTINCT AS CANADIAN HOUSING MARKET GRAPPLES WITH CORONAVIRUS FALLOUT

FP - Nichola Saminather (2020-03-20)

“Open houses are quickly becoming extinct,” said Phil Soper, chief executive of brokerage Royal LePage, although agents are still showing homes to individuals and small groups.


'STRINGS ATTACHED': GOVERNMENTS OFFER FINANCIAL LIFELINES TO AIRLINES, AT A PRICE

Reuters - Jamie Freed, David Shepardson (2020-03-20)

Conditions include provisions that loans may convert to government equity stakes, while U.S. airlines cannot increase executive pay or provide “golden parachutes” for two years. Air New Zealand’s (AIR.NZ) bailout also depends on the company suspending its dividend and paying interest rates of 7% to 9%.


DEUTSCHE BANK WARNS VIRUS MAY 'MATERIALLY' IMPACT TARGETS

Reuters - Reuters (2020-03-20)

“We may be materially adversely affected by a protracted downturn in local, regional or global economic condition,” the bank said in its annual report.


JPMORGAN'S JAMIE DIMON RECOVERING WELL, MID-APRIL RETURN POSSIBLE: SOURCE

Reuters - Reuters (2020-03-20)

Dimon has been closely involved in many of the bank’s high-profile decisions during the past few weeks as the coronavirus pandemic roiled global markets, said the source, who requested anonymity because Dimon’s plans have not been formalized.


‘BULLY OFFERS’ ECLIPSE VIRUS WOES IN CANADA’S HOME MARKET

Bloomberg - Jacqueline Thorpe, Natalie Obiko Pearson, and Sandrine Rastello (2020-03-20)

A week into a pandemic that has forced a swath of Canada’s economy to shut down and wiped hundreds of billions of dollars off the nation’s stock market, a Vancouver mansion sold for C$150,000 ($105,000) over the asking price.


BANK OF CANADA HAS A FEW OPTIONS BEFORE MOVING TO NEGATIVE RATES

Bloomberg - Shelly Hagan (2020-03-20)

Markets are certain the Bank of Canada will be forced to cut interest rates to near zero in coming weeks, and even days, to support an economy tumbling into recession. What happens after that is open to debate.


CALIFORNIA ORDERS LOCKDOWN FOR STATE’S 40 MILLION RESIDENTS

WSJ - Jennifer Calfas, Margherita Stancati and Chuin-Wei Yap (2020-03-20)

California ordered its 40 million residents to stay at home except for essential activities beginning Thursday night in the largest such lockdown in the U.S., as the nation’s total coronavirus cases rose to more than 14,000 and an intensifying outbreak in Europe pushed State Department officials to advise citizens not to travel abroad.


CANADA’S POPULATION EXPLODES AT THE FASTEST RATE SINCE 1990, EVEN WITH OUTBREAK

Better Dwelling - Daniel Wong (2020-03-20)

Canada’s population is growing at the fastest pace in decades, according to estimates. The population hit 37.89 million people as of Q1 2020, up 0.26% from the previous quarter. Compared to the same quarter last year, this is a 1.56% increase. The annual increase is the highest since Q1 1990 – three decades ago.


HIGH-GRADE BOND-FUND OUTFLOWS HIT $35.6 BILLION, SMASHING RECORD

Bloomberg - Claire Boston, Olivia Raimonde, and Alex Harris (2020-03-20)

Investors withdrew an unprecedented $35.6 billion from U.S. funds that buy up investment-grade debt this week as the global market rout from the spreading coronavirus intensified. At the same time, a record $249 billion poured into U.S. government money-market funds.


US CREDIT CARD LENDERS REEL AS BORROWERS GET LAID OFF

FT - Laura Noonan (2020-03-20)

Fears that the coronavirus will lead to widespread unemployment and a spike in consumer defaults have wiped more than two-thirds from the value of US credit card lenders and left executives contemplating cutting credit limits for some customers. 


WATCHDOG WARNS INSURERS OVER CORONAVIRUS CLAIMS

FT - Matthew Vincent (2020-03-20)

Britain’s financial regulator told insurance companies on Thursday that they must be flexible in how they treat customers who are having to change travel and work plans because of the coronavirus pandemic. In new guidance to the providers and buyers of travel, motor, home and medical policies, the Financial Conduct Authority said it “would not expect to see a customer’s ability to claim affected by circumstances over which they have little control”.


HEDGE FUND BETS HAMMERED AS INDUSTRY RETRENCHES

FT - Robin Wigglesworth (2020-03-20)

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TWO EX-LONDON BANKERS CONVICTED IN FIRST CUM-EX SCANDAL TRIAL

FT - Olaf Storbeck (2020-03-20)

Two former London bankers were found guilty of tax evasion in the first German trial to rule on the legality of a controversial set of share trades that authorities claim robbed them of billions of euros of revenues.


VIRUS SCARE CREATES PERFECT STORM FOR MORTGAGE LENDERS

American Banker - Kate Berry (2020-03-20)

Lenders were having trouble with staffing long before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic because low interest rates had led to a stampede of borrowers seeking to refinance. Now emergency action by the Federal Reserve has dropped rates to nearly zero, and more homeowners want to lower their mortgage payments as businesses, according to one estimate, lay off or cut back on hours for nearly 1 in 5 workers.


FRUSTRATED CANADIANS LOOKING FOR MORTGAGE DEFERRALS FROM BIG BANKS FACING DELAYS, DENIALS

CBC - Aaron Saltzman (2020-03-20)

"My wife called the 1-800 number for Bank of Montreal, talked to an adviser on the line to see what we are eligible for," said Evan McFatridge of Dartmouth, N.S., whose family is down to a single income because his wife has been laid off from her job at a restaurant.


TRUDEAU UNVEILS $27-BILLION IN AID, $55-BILLION OF TAX DEFERRALS IN CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE

G&M - Robert Fife (2020-03-19)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau unveiled a sweeping emergency-aid package Wednesday aimed at helping Canadian workers and businesses survive the severe economic downturn caused by the new coronavirus pandemic.


BIG FOUR CAR COMPANIES CLOSING ALL NORTH AMERICAN FACTORIES DUE TO CORONAVIRUS

G&M - Joe Castaldo (2020-03-19)

Ford Motor Co., General Motors Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. are closing all North American factories amid safety concerns stemming from the novel coronavirus, as global business continues to grind to a halt.


STIMULUS FROM OTTAWA FAILS TO CALM INVESTORS AS ENERGY SECTOR WEIGHS ON TSX

G&M - David Berman (2020-03-19)

Stocks fell sharply, while bonds and gold failed to offer any support, in a widespread rout amid ongoing uncertainty over the economic downturn tied to the coronavirus pandemic, leaving cash as the sole asset in high demand.


TSX LOSES ANOTHER 8% AS CANADIAN OIL PRICE FALLS TO LOWEST LEVEL ON RECORD

CBC - Pete Evans (2020-03-19)

The price of a barrel of Canadian oilsands crude oil fell to its lowest level ever on Wednesday, and the Toronto Stock Exchange sold off heavily as a result.


U.S. ECONOMY WILL SHRINK BY 14% AS CORONAVIRUS LEADS TO WORST CONTRACTION IN 50 YEARS: JPMORGAN

FP - Victor Ferreira (2020-03-19)

China will feel the pain first — and most brutally — as its GDP growth declines to -40 per cent in the first quarter. The U.S. and the Euro area will begin to feel that shock in the first quarter as well with four per cent and 15 per cent contractions respectively, Kasman wrote.


EXTREME MARKET STRESS PUTS US$6.4 TRILLION ETF SECTOR UNDER ACUTE PRESSURE

FP - Chris Flood and Attracta Mooney (2020-03-19)

BlackRock’s flagship high-yield ETF, known widely by its ticker HYG, and its most direct competitor, State Street’s JNK, have both suffered large asset declines this month.


WORLD LEADERS RUSH IN TO SHORE UP PANIC-HIT GLOBAL FINANCIAL SYSTEM

Reuters - Marius Zaharia (2020-03-19)

Policymakers in the United States, Europe and Asia have slashed interest rates and opened liquidity taps to stabilise economies left almost comatose, with quarantined consumers, broken supply chains, paralysed transportation and depleted shops.


AN ADVENTURE IN ECONOMIC WONDERLAND COMES TO AN END

Bloomberg - Daniel Moss (2020-03-19)

One of the biggest repercussions from the Covid-19 outbreak in Australia ought to be the end of its island mentality. A near three-decade expansion fed a myth of invincibility that now seems to be coming to an end. Luckily, central bank chief Philip Lowe never fully bought into this hype, and has rightly accelerated plans that he'd been considering for some time to restore the economy. Let’s hope he’s not too late.


LAGARDE'S BAZOOKA ISN'T BIG ENOUGH FOR THIS CRISIS

Bloomberg - John Authers (2020-03-19)

On one thing it seems that everyone agrees. The world has changed in the last two months, and by the time the pandemic subsides, it will have changed utterly. The Archbishop of Canterbury (who started his career as an oil executive before going into the church), has likened the impact to a nuclear explosion — “the initial impact is colossal but the fallout last for years and will shape us in ways we can’t even begin to predict at the moment."


CANADIAN REAL ESTATE SALES WERE BOOMING BEFORE THE ABRUPT COVID-19 HALT

Better Dwelling - Kaitlin Last (2020-03-19)

Canadian real estate sales were significantly higher last month, compared to last year. There were 38,161 sales in February, up 40.32% from a month before. Compared to the same month last year, this represents a 26.89% increase. This is massive growth – but there’s a couple of notes on that.


ECB TO LAUNCH €750BN BOND-BUYING PROGRAMME

FT - Martin Arnold (2020-03-19)

The European Central Bank has unveiled plans to buy an extra €750bn of bonds and issued a “no limits” commitment to defend the eurozone on Wednesday night in response to the worsening economic and financial turmoil caused by the coronavirus pandemic.


FEDERAL RESERVE SETS UP FACILITY TO MAKE LOANS TO BANKS

FT - James Politi (2020-03-19)

The US Federal Reserve increased its efforts to shore up financial markets late on Wednesday by setting up a facility that would make loans to banks secured by assets from money market mutual funds. 


THE GOOD AND BAD NEWS ABOUT EVENT CANCELLATION INSURANCE

Canadian Underwriter - Greg Meckbach (2020-03-19)

“Insurers do not see themselves having exposure to COVID-19 when writing event cancellation insurance,” said Ben Rossington, Toronto-based entertainment and sports account manager at Hub International. This is because of the bad news: event cancellation policies normally exclude communicable disease.


QUEBEC WARNS NO EMERGENCY SHELTERS FOR SPRING FLOODING AMID COVID 19 OUTBREAK

Canadian Underwriter - CP (2020-03-19)

Guilbault says due to the risk of contamination, the province won’t open shelters for those affected by flooding as they did last year when thousands were forced from their homes.


NEGATIVE OUTLOOK FOR U.S. LIFE INSURANCE AND ANNUITY MARKET

Insurance-Portal.ca - IIJ (2020-03-19)

AM Best’s outlook for the U.S. life/annuity market segment has been revised to negative from stable, due to financial market volatility created by the COVID-19 virus.


CORONAVIRUS EMERGENCY: HOW TO BEST USE THE NEW ECB LIQUIDITY

Bobsguide - Bobsguide (2020-03-19)

At its meeting on March 12, the Governing Council of the ECB unleashed new, unconventional monetary policy measures to support the liquidity of banks and credit to households and businesses. The new package includes, among other things, changes to the current longer-term auctions (TLTROs) and introduces new weekly auctions (LTROs) to steer banks towards the June TLTRO auction. The new conditions applied to transactions are quite complex: this article highlights the possible strategic responses of banks to maximise the benefits of the measures.


BANK OF CANADA URGES RETAILERS TO STOP BANNING CASH TRANSACTIONS

The Paypers - CET (2020-03-19)

Several Canadian outlets, citing health concerns, are declining to take cash. For instance, coffee store chain Second Cup said that its outlets would only accept debit, credit, gift cards and mobile payments.


SQUARE GETS THE NOD TO OPERATE A BANK

Forbes - Donna Fuscaldo (2020-03-19)

In a press release Square said the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. voted to conditionally approve Square’s application and that it received charter approval from Utah Department of Financial Institutions. Square is aiming to launch a bank in 2021 called Square Financial Services. The bank will be supervised by the FDIC and the Utah Department of Financial Institutions. 


BANKS NOW HALT MOBILE MONEY TRANSFER CHARGES

Business Daily - John mutua (2020-03-19)

Banks on Wednesday made a U-turn on ignoring the Central Bank of Kenya’s (CBK) directive to remove transaction costs for customers who move money between their mobile wallets and bank accounts.


OTTAWA TO UNVEIL NEARLY $30-BILLION ECONOMIC AID PACKAGE FOR STRUGGLING CANADIANS, BUSINESSES

G&M - Robert Fife, Daniel Leblanc, Bill Curry (2020-03-18)

The federal government will unveil nearly $30-billion of emergency financial aid on Wednesday to help struggling Canadians and businesses cope with the economic fallout from the new coronavirus crisis, sources say.


THE TRUE COST OF A DECADE OF LOW INTEREST RATES

G&M - KONRAD YAKABUSKI (2020-03-18)

Central banks, at least the ones that could, have moved with unprecedented speed to slash interest rates in the past two weeks as countrywide shutdowns related to the coronavirus pandemic drive the global economy to the brink of recession.


CANADIAN SNOWBIRDS TOLD TO COME HOME AS SOME INSURERS WARN MEDICAL INSURANCE WILL BE RESTRICTED

CBC - John Paul Tasker (2020-03-18)

Canadian snowbirds are being advised to return home as the COVID-19 pandemic advances in the U.S. — and access to out-of-country medical insurance comes to an end for some travellers.


JANUARY MANUFACTURING SALES SHOW CANADIAN FACTORIES WERE SLOWING EVEN BEFORE COVID-19 HIT

CBC - CP (2020-03-18)

Statistics Canada says manufacturing sales fell 0.2 per cent to $56.1 billion in January. The agency says it was the fifth consecutive monthly decline.


WESTJET TO SUSPEND INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS

CBC - Sarah Rieger (2020-03-18)

WestJet Airlines says it will suspend all international flights — including to the U.S — for 30 days, beginning this Sunday March 22.


'OLD-SCHOOL CENTRAL BANKING' CAN ONLY DO SO MUCH TO HELP DURING CORONAVIRUS CRISIS

FP - Kevin Carmichael (2020-03-18)

After the Bank of Canada cut interest rates by a half-point on March 4, I wrote that the timing of its next move would be determined by oil prices. If I had thought to check the central bank’s measure of commodity prices, I might have been less surprised by the second cut nine days later.


HSBC APPOINTS INSIDER QUINN AS CEO AMID GROWTH HEADWINDS

Reuters - Lawrence White, Sinead Cruise (2020-03-18)

HSBC has appointed Noel Quinn as chief executive officer, handing the insider and interim boss the reins of Europe’s biggest bank and ending months of speculation an external candidate could get the role.


CREDIT SUISSE SHARPLY CUTS MEXICO'S 2020 GDP, SEES ECONOMY SHRINKING BY 4%

Reuters - Credit Suisse (2020-03-18)

Credit Suisse sharply lowered its forecast for Mexico’s economic performance this year and now expects a 4.0% contraction, according to a note sent to the bank’s clients on Tuesday, adding to a series of downgrades since the coronavirus spread.


SURGING U.S. DOLLAR IS NEXT BIG HEADACHE FOR WORLD ECONOMY

Bloomberg - Michelle Jamrisko (2020-03-18)

With the dollar more integrated into the world economy than ever before, its gains are an added stress for businesses and governments as they brace for soaring costs on their dollar debt. The dilemma for emerging market central banks is that as they slash interest rates to support growth, they risk destabilizing their currencies as well if they cut too much.


CENTRAL BANK’S MEDICINE IS A SALVE FOR CREDIT MARKETS, CIBC SAYS

Bloomberg - Paula Sambo (2020-03-18)

The Bank of Canada has escalated its efforts to make sure the country’s banks can still lend during the coronavirus crisis. It’s working, according to a CIBC strategist.


U.S. FUTURES AND GLOBAL STOCKS RESUME FALLS

WSJ - Xie Yu, Anna Isaac (2020-03-18)


FINTECHS GET CLEARER RULES ON BANKING LICENSES UNDER FDIC PLAN

WSJ - Andrew Ackerman (2020-03-18)


FED UNVEILS EMERGENCY LENDING PROGRAMS AS COMPANIES STRUGGLE TO RAISE CASH

NY Times - Erin Schaff (2020-03-18)

The Federal Reserve took a series of steps on Tuesday to prop up the American economy, saying first that it would begin buying up a type of debt that companies issue for short-term cash and then, later in the day, establishing a lending program meant to help the banks at the core of the financial system function smoothly.


ELECTRONIC PAYMENTS LOOK MORE APPEALING AS PEOPLE FEAR CASH COULD SPREAD CORONAVIRUS

CNBC - Kate Rooney (2020-03-18)

As the number of cases tick up in the U.S., some are going cashless to avoid potential hygiene issues around handling banknotes. Regardless of  whether there’s a proven risk, the “psychological factor” of people thinking of cash as “unclean” could change how they choose to pay, according to Bain & Co. partner, Thomas Olsen. 


SOVEREIGN DOWNGRADES TO FOLLOW COVID-19: FITCH

Investment Executive - James Langton (2020-03-18)

“Global economic policymakers face an unprecedented combination of challenges including a health crisis, economic disruption, severe financial market dislocation, changes in investor sentiment, exchange-rate volatility and a commodity price shock,” Fitch said.


$425M IN WORLD BANK CATASTROPHE BONDS SET TO DEFAULT IF CORONAVIRUS DECLARED A PANDEMIC BY JUNE

Washington Examiner - Spencer Neale (2020-03-17)

In 2017, the World Bank designed a new way to raise money: Pandemic Emergency Financing bonds. Over $425 million worth of such bonds, which bet against a global outbreak of infectious diseases and will default if WHO declares the coronavirus a pandemic, were sold by the World Bank in its first-ever issuance of catastrophe bonds. In the event of no pandemic, investors would be paid a healthy annualized return. Meanwhile, the World Bank could use the bonds to insure itself against the risk of a global outbreak.


GORDON PAPE: NEGATIVE INTEREST RATES COULD NOW BE COMING TO CANADA. THREE INVESTMENTS TO PREPARE FOR IT

G&M - Gordon Pape (2020-03-17)

A reader sent in a very relevant question last week: “If we head towards negative interest rates like some parts of the world, where does one invest their money to earn a decent return?”


BANK OF CANADA UNVEILS NEW MEASURES TO SUPPORT FINANCIAL SYSTEM, MORTGAGE MARKETS

G&M - Streetwise (2020-03-17)

Bank of Canada unveils new measures to support financial system, mortgage markets: The Bank of Canada unveiled new measures to keep Canada’s financial system flowing and support mortgage markets, as central banks step up efforts to avert a liquidity and lending crunch amid tumultuous markets. (David Parkinson)


CIBC TO TEMPORARILY SHUTTER 20 PER CENT OF CUSTOMER CENTRES IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19 PANDEMIC

G&M - Sean Silcoff (2020-03-17)

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce will temporarily shut 206 locations – more than 20 per cent of its banking centres – to the public in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, the bank announced late Monday evening.


'D' WORD REARS HEAD AS CORONAVIRUS-HIT MARKETS BRACE FOR RECESSION

Reuters - Lewis Kraskopf (2020-03-17)

Forecasters at Goldman Sachs and other banks are now projecting a steep economic contraction in at least the second quarter as governments in the United States and Europe start shutting restaurants, closing schools and calling on citizens to stay home.


CANADA TO BUY MORTGAGES IN LATEST STEP TO EASE MARKET STRAIN

Bloomberg - Theophilos Argitis (2020-03-17)

Canadian policy makers are escalating their efforts to backstop the nation’s financial system and ensure banks have plenty of room to continue lending through the coronavirus crisis.


ONTARIO'S INSURANCE AND FINANCIAL REGULATOR DETAILS BUSINESS CONTINUITY PLAN

Insurance Business - Lyle Adriano (2020-03-17)

Public consultations with the FSRA will be performed online and will continue, however. FSRA is also reviewing upcoming licensing, filing and other requirements across the regulated sectors in light of the pandemic-driven disruption. And while certain credit unions and Ontario-incorporated insurers are required to hold annual general meetings, the FSRA has urged them to instead hold digital conferences.


U.S. FED CUTS INTEREST RATE TO NEAR ZERO TO SUPPORT ECONOMY

G&M - Patrick Brethour (2020-03-16)

The U.S. Federal Reserve is taking emergency action to buoy the American economy, as the disruption caused by the novel coronavirus raises fears of recession and a credit freeze in financial markets.


THREE MOVES POLOZ CAN STILL MAKE TO STIMULATE THE ECONOMY

G&M - DAVID PARKINSON (2020-03-16)

Minutes after the Bank of Canada slashed its key policy interest rate for the second time in nine days on Friday – with quite likely more cuts to come – Governor Stephen Poloz was asked in a press conference what more he could do to stimulate a threatened economy, with rates rapidly approaching zero.


‘ACT OF GOD’ CLAUSES COULD BE TRIGGERED IN THE WAKE OF CORONAVIRUS

G&M - Christine Dobby (2020-03-16)

As Canadian businesses begin to deal with the fallout of the novel coronavirus, many are evaluating whether their commercial contracts could be broken by force majeure clauses that cover events outside the parties’ control.


MAJOR CANADIAN INSURANCE COMPANIES WON’T COVER CORONAVIRUS TREATMENT FOR TRAVELLERS TO ‘HIGH-RISK’ COUNTRIES

G&M - Clare O'Hara (2020-03-16)

Some major Canadian insurers will no longer cover emergency medical expenses related to the novel coronavirus for travellers who visit countries with high-level travel advisories.


CANADIAN BANKS NEED TO BE MORE TRANSPARENT ABOUT THEIR EXPOSURE TO THE OIL PATCH

G&M - Rita Trichur (2020-03-16)

During a conference call back in February, 2016, there was a terse exchange between a long-time analyst and executives at National Bank of Canada that typified how this country’s banking industry bungled investor relations during the last oil price rout.


CANADA’S ECONOMY IS HEADING TOWARD A RECESSION AS VIRUS, OIL PRICES TAKE BITE OUT OF GROWTH

G&M - Matt Lundy, Mark Rendell, Andrew Willis (2020-03-16)

Exports are bound to weaken – not only because of a big drop in oil prices, but softening demand from key trading partners. Household spending is tightening as consumers restrict their purchases to the essentials. And debt-laden businesses are finding themselves under financial pressure as their revenues take a hit.


BUSINESS BANK OF CANADA MAKES EMERGENCY INTEREST RATE CUT

CBC - Pete Evans (2020-03-16)

The Bank of Canada has made an unexpected rate cut, cutting the central bank's benchmark interest rate by 50 basis points to 0.75 per cent.


OTTAWA ANNOUNCES $10 BILLION BUSINESS CREDIT LINE, PLANS TO ROLL OUT STIMULUS PACKAGE AS COVID-19 SPREADS

CBC - John Paul Tasker (2020-03-16)

Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced Friday that the government will establish a $10 billion credit facility to lend money to businesses under stress as a result of the spreading COVID-19 pandemic.


THIS TIME IS DIFFERENT: WHY THE CORONAVIRUS CRASH ISN'T A REPEAT OF 2008 — AND MIGHT BE WORSE

FP - Victor Ferreira (2020-03-16)

“In the financial crisis, air travel didn’t come to a halt, borders weren’t being closed, we weren’t talking about quarantines and self-isolation,” said Rosenberg, now the chief economist of Rosenberg Research and Associates Inc. “In the financial crisis, people weren’t scared to leave their homes. We’re talking about palpable fear and when people get fearful, they withdraw from economic activity…. The reality is the financial crisis did not come with a mortality rate.”


FED SLASHES RATES TO NEAR ZERO, PULLS OUT THE STOPS TO CUSHION CORONAVIRUS BLOW

FP - Craig Torres, Rich Miller (2020-03-16)

The central bank also announced several other actions, including letting banks borrow from the discount window for as long as 90 days and reducing reserve requirement ratios to zero percent. In addition, it united with five other central banks to ensure dollars are available around the world via swap lines.


CORONAVIRUS HITS 'HEART AND SOUL' AS NEW YORK, LOS ANGELES BARS AND THEATERS FORCED TO CLOSE

Reuters - Reuters (2020-03-16)

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Sunday he was ordering restaurants, bars and cafes to only sell food on a take-out or delivery basis. He also said he would order nightclubs, movie theaters, small theater houses and concert venues to close.


FED BRINGS OUT BIG GUNS, INVESTORS FEAR THE WORST

Reuters - Lewis Krauskoff (2020-03-16)

“This is an indication that the central bank is very scared about the environment we’re in,” said Michael O’Rourke, chief market strategist at JonesTrading in Stamford, Connecticut. “The policy response is so strong, it’s likely to spook investors.”


CITIGROUP, JPMORGAN REPORT NEW YORK CASES OF CORONAVIRUS

Reuters - Imani Moise (2020-03-16)

New York-based banks Citigroup Inc (C.N) and JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N) both reported on Friday that they have employees who have tested positive for the coronavirus.


GOLDMAN SACHS PREDICTS U.S. GDP TO SHRINK 5% IN SECOND QUARTER

Bloomberg - Jeff Kearns (2020-03-16)

The U.S. economy will contract sharply in late March and April as consumers and businesses slash spending, with the short downturn likely be officially deemed as being a recession, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc.


A FED DECISION ONLY ALAN GREENSPAN COULD LOVE

Bloomberg - Daniel Moss (2020-03-16)

The coronavirus pandemic is giving birth to a new doctrine in central banking. What matters most isn't transparency or forecasts, but the ability to move quickly.  


STOCKS AND BOND YIELDS SLIDE AFTER FED SLASHES RATES

WSJ - Anna Hirtenstein, Chong Koh Ping (2020-03-16)


BANK OF JAPAN TO DOUBLE STOCK PURCHASES TO BLUNT VIRUS IMPACT

WSJ - Megumi Fujikawa (2020-03-16)

The Bank of Japan said it would double stock purchases and help companies get loans in response to the coronavirus pandemic, but the move failed to impress investors, who drove stocks down 2.5%.


BIGGEST U.S. BANKS HALT BUYBACKS TO FREE UP CAPITAL FOR CORONAVIRUS

WSJ - David Benoit (2020-03-16)

The biggest U.S. banks put share buybacks on hold and pledged to put their capital to use helping consumers and businesses struggling with the rapid economic slowdown caused by the novel coronavirus outbreak.


OIL-PRICE CRASH RAISES RISK FOR BANKS, COMMODITY TRADERS

WSJ - Sarah McFarlane (2020-03-16)

An important corner of trade finance is becoming riskier for banks and traders dealing with fallout from the coronavirus-inspired market rout and the recent crash in oil prices.


CHINESE ECONOMY SUFFERS RECORD BLOW FROM CORONAVIRUS

FT - Don Weinland and Xinning Liu (2020-03-16)

The official data — some of the worst official figures ever reported by China — suggest President Xi Jinping’s attempts to expedite an economic recovery in late February have not yet had the desired effect.


DALIO CAUGHT WRONGFOOTED WITH BIG LOSSES AT BRIDGEWATER FUND

FT - Jennifer Ablan and Ortenca Aliaj, Kruppa (2020-03-16)

The founder of the world’s largest hedge fund has admitted his Bridgewater Associates was caught wrongfooted during this month’s coronavirus-led market turmoil, as its flagship fund dropped about 20 per cent for the year following sharp reversals in stocks, bonds, commodities and credit. 


HOW CORONAVIRUS BECAME A CORPORATE CREDIT RUN

FT - Rana Foroohar (2020-03-16)

Today, it is not Wall Street financial institutions, but companies in a variety of industries that are stressed, as a simultaneous supply and demand shock means they need to tap credit lines to pay their bills.


FIDELITY PROPOSES FUND MERGERS AND TERMINATIONS

Insurance Journal - IIJ (2020-03-16)

Subject to the approval of securityholders, Fidelity is also proposing the termination of Fidelity Global Telecommunications Fund and Fidelity Global Telecommunications Class. Investors will be able to switch into other Fidelity mutual funds or redeem their securities. The Global Telecom Funds will be generally closed to new purchases by new investors as of the close of business on March 26, 2020.


TRAVELEX OWNER ON VERGE OF COLLAPSE

Finextra - Finextra (2020-03-16)

The Financial Conduct Authority agreed to suspend trading in Finablr today after shares in the company fell by nearly 10%.


SWIFT DELAYS ISO 20022 CROSS-BORDER PAYMENTS MIGRATION

Finextra - Finextra (2020-03-16)

The decision to delay was made following feedback from the Swift community about the impending deadline. While institutions have an extra year of system co-existence initially, the ultimate deadline for decommissiong the legacy Swift MT standard remains in place as 2025.


CORONAVIRUS CREATES TURBULENCE FOR COBRANDED TRAVEL CARDS

Paymentsource - Kate Fitzgerald (2020-03-16)

Cobranded travel credit cards — including some of the most popular and profitable in the payment card industry — are looking at darker skies because of COVID-19.


AI IN BANKING: ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE COULD BE A NEAR $450 BILLION OPPORTUNITY FOR BANKS - HERE ARE THE STRATEGIES THE WINNERS ARE USING

Business Insider - Eleni Digalaki (2020-03-16)

Most banks (80%) are highly aware of the potential benefits presented by AI...


BANK OF CANADA UNVEILS NEW MEASURES TO SUPPORT FINANCIAL SYSTEM, MORTGAGE MARKETS

G&M - DAVID PARKINSON (2020-03-16)

The Bank of Canada unveiled new measures to keep Canada’s financial system flowing and support mortgage markets, as central banks step up efforts to avert a liquidity and lending crunch amid tumultuous markets.


RBC AND SCOTIABANK CUT PRIME RATES; OTHER BANKS LIKELY TO FOLLOW SUIT

G&M - Nichola Samanther (2020-03-16)

Royal Bank of Canada and Bank of Nova Scotia said on Monday they would reduce their prime rates by 50 basis points to 2.95 per cent, the lowest level since August 2017, passing on to borrowers in full the Bank of Canada’s second interest rate cut this month.


BANKS, TELECOMS OFFER HELP FOR CUSTOMERS FACING FINANCIAL HARDSHIP AS CORONAVIRUS CRISIS DEEPENS

G&M - Mark Rendell (2020-03-16)

Canadian banks, telecommunications companies and utilities are offering relief to customers affected by the spread of novel coronavirus, waiving fees and providing flexibility on certain payments.


CANADIAN DOLLAR HITS A FOUR-YEAR LOW AS ECONOMIC FEARS GROW

G&M - Fergal Smith (2020-03-16)

Canada’s main stock market index tumbled nearly 10 per cent and the Canadian dollar hit a four-year low, as Ottawa limited entry into the country to help fight the spreading coronavirus and measures taken by global central banks failed to calm investors.


CANADIAN POLICY MAKERS MOVE TO SHORE UP FINANCIAL SYSTEM, CUSHION ECONOMY FROM DOWNTURN

G&M - Matt Lundy, David Parkinson (2020-03-16)

Canadian policy makers moved on Monday to shore up the financial system and cushion the economy against a downturn that is virtually without precedent as businesses close down, workers stay home and travel bans intensify.


TSX AND DOW JONES LOSE ANOTHER 10% AS CORONAVIRUS SELL-OFF CONTINUES

CBC - Pete Evans (2020-03-16)

Stock markets in Toronto and New York plunged anew on Monday as investors continued to digest news of the coronavirus and ran for the exits.


AVERAGE CANADIAN HOUSE PRICE ROSE TO $540,000 LAST MONTH, UP 15% IN PAST YEAR

CBC - CBC (2020-03-16)

The average price of a Canadian home that sold in February was $540,000, a figure that rose by 15.2 per cent in the previous 12 months, the group that represents Canadian realtors says.


BIGGEST STOCK ROUT SINCE 1987 RAISES QUESTION WHETHER CORONAVIRUS WILL CLOSE MARKETS TOO

FP - Victor Ferreira (2020-03-16)

The Dow Jones Industrial average lost more than 12 per cent and closed down 2,997 points — a record drop — and has now lost 31 per cent since reaching its 52-week high in February. The S&P wiped out its gain in 2019 and is now down almost 30 per cent from its all-time high. It was the biggest rout on Wall Street since 1987. The S&P/TSX Composite Index, meanwhile, lost more than 1,355 points or nine per cent.


FEARS INTENSIFY OVER EUROPEAN BANKS’ ABILITY TO WEATHER CORONAVIRUS CRISIS

WSJ - Margot Patrick, Patricia Kowsmann (2020-03-16)


OSC TAKES ACTION TO ADDRESS OUTBREAK

Investment Executive - James Langton (2020-03-16)

To address the Covid-19 outbreak, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is suspending in-person hearings until the end of April, along with a variety of other operational changes.


FEDS LAUNCH REVISED INSURED MORTGAGE PURCHASE PROGRAM

Investment Executive - IE (2020-03-16)

Under the revised Insured Mortgage Purchase Program (IMPP), the government will purchase up to $50 billion of insured mortgage pools through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), the CMHC said in a release on Monday.


CENTRAL BANKS ARE BUYING TIME: FITCH

Investment Executive - James Langton (2020-03-16)

Efforts by the world’s central banks to ensure that global financial markets continue to function, despite the fallout from the Covid-19 outbreak, provide banks with time and space to adjust to fast-changing conditions, says Fitch Ratings.


ELECTRONIC PAYMENTS LOOK MORE APPEALING AS PEOPLE FEAR CASH COULD SPREAD CORONAVIRUS

CNBC - Kate Rooney (2020-03-16)

The coronavirus outbreak is prompting second thoughts about reaching for cash. 


CENTRAL 1: COVID-19: MESSAGE FROM THE CEO

Central 1 - Central 1 (2020-03-16)

With growing concerns and impacts of COVID-19, I wanted to provide you with an update on Central 1’s response and actions to date and our commitment to you going forward. These are unprecedented and challenging times for everyone, and the health and well-being of our employees, members, clients, and communities are top priority for Central 1.  


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UBS WEALTH BANKERS GET DOSE OF CREDIT SUISSE TONIC IN KHAN PLA

Bloomberg - Patrick Winters and Marion Halftermeyer (2020-12-17)

Colleagues say the Pakistan-born executive is enthusiastic, energetic and talented. Former associates have described him as confident, even overly so. That said, he knows the business from several angles: Khan was a UBS auditor at Ernst & Young and a key competitor at Credit Suisse.


HOW CAN INSURANCE BROKERS USE RATE COMPARISON SITES TO BOOST THEIR BOOKS OF BUSINESS?

Insurance Business - Bethan Moorcraft (2020-12-07)

Enter, rate comparison websites. They’re all the rage in the UK and the USA, where consumers use comparison sites to shop for insurance much like Canadians do when comparing travel costs on sites like Expedia and Trivago. But Canadians are slowly starting to catch on to the insurance comparison trend. They’re searching for and finding platforms like LowestRates.ca, which is enabling consumers to compare insurance premium prices across a number of product lines, primarily in auto and home insurance.


BOAZ MANOR, BUSINESS PARTNER INDICTED ON FRAUD CHARGES IN U.S. OVER BLOCKCHAIN VENTURE

FP - Barbara Shecter (2020-10-20)

Boaz Manor, a former Canadian hedge fund manager who served jail time following the collapse of Portus Alternative Asset Management Inc. in 2005, was indicted Friday on fresh criminal charges in the United States in connection with an alleged securities fraud scheme at an entirely different venture: a New York-based blockchain technology startup.


CHRISTINE LAGARDE GETS A HEAVY POINTER ON HER ECB REVIEW

Bloomberg - Ferdinando Giugliano (2020-06-20)

Nevertheless, Lagarde and her colleagues would be wise to read the staff paper closely. Among all the carefully worded language, one can clearly see the contours of a monetary framework that would work for the ECB’s third decade. These include changing the inflation target to 2%, and maintaining all of the instruments — asset purchases, long-term loans to the banking system and negative interest rates — that the central bank used throughout the presidency of Lagarde’s predecessor, Mario Draghi. 

The argument for a symmetric inflation target is rooted in the power of expectations. The ECB at the moment aims to reach an inflation rate “close to but below 2%.” This means that, as price pressures start climbing toward 2%, investors and consumers expect the ECB to react aggressively, tightening monetary policy to push inflation back. The authors believe this served the ECB well during its first decade, when it had to establish its reputation and fight off inflationary forces. However, the objective has been less useful in today’s era of persistently low inflation. It may even be counterproductive. Consumers and investors don’t expect the central bank to act so decisively to counter deflation.  


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INSURANCE COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA DECLARES COVID-19 AN ‘INSURANCE CATASTROPHE’

It believes the virus and the implications of it are ‘catastrophic’ for the insurance industry.  The council stated that the extent of claims and losses related to the coronavirus is unknown at this point but it also announced that an insurance industry taskforce has been formed to ensure that accurate claims data is captured by the industry, and that insurers’ positions on the virus can be understood by stakeholders.


HOW COVID-19 IMPACTS SURETY BOND PLACEMENT

“Anyone who is seriously engaged in the surety business in this country has the ability to provide electronic bonds or digital bonds,” said Ness. “And if you are not, my message to you is: ‘The world is not going to sit still for you. Get yourself into the 21st century if you want to keep doing business.’”


HOW BAD WILL CANADA'S COVID-19 RECESSION BE?

Under a more pessimistic scenario, the board sees lockdowns and quarantines stretching for up to six months, until August. If that happens, the GDP hit would be massive — an annualized contraction rate of 9.6 per cent in the second quarter, which is worse than what we saw in the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009. The economy shrank at an annual pace of 8.7 per cent at its worst stage, in early 2009 before rebounding starting in the spring.



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