News Feed: Financial Services
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2014-02-17 - PNC Bank received approval from the OSFI for a license to expand commercial banking services across Canada. The bank will now extend its Canadian commercial banking capabilities to include deposits and a comprehensive range of treasury management services for Canadian companies and U.S. companies doing business in Canada.
2014-02-04 - Swiss money manager Unigestion announced the opening of an office in Toronto. The move signals Unigestion's ambition to expand and enlarge its client base across the country. Unigestion offers investment solutions and services to institutional investors across four investment strategies: risk managed equities, private assets, and alternative investments and cross asset solutions. Unigestion believes that its investment management service is ideally suited to the institutional investor segment in Canada.
2014-01-09 - Private equity firm KKR will open its first Canadian office in Calgary in late February as it seeks to tap into growing demand for private equity financing in the region and expand its presence in the global energy industry. ''We'd like to invest $500 million to several billion dollars over the next five years,'' including funds already invested in two Canadian energy-related companies, said KKR director Brandon Freiman. The planned investments will include providing financing instead of outright takeovers.
San Francisco–based hedge fund business Conifer Fund Services is creating as many as 120 jobs in Nova Scotia. Jack McDonald, president and CEO of The Conifer Group said "Halifax will become a key centre for hedge fund administration because it has a highly educated and skilled labour force, low staff turnover, and a high quality of life." Conifer is working with the province's universities and Nova Scotia Community College to employ new graduates.
2012-11-05 - Wells Fargo added 25 bankers in Canada as the bank makes the country its top priority for international expansion, said Richard Yorke, who leads the lender's international group. "The Canada strategy is clearly a part of our overall international strategy, and the strategy is focused around leveraging the American nexus, our capabilities and customer base in the U.S.," Yorke said. Wells Fargo received Canadian government approval in September to provide commercial and corporate banking in the country, adding to the bank's existing equipment financing and capital finance operations in Canada. The company plans to add an additional 20 employees within a year.
2012-09-12 - Pershing announced the membership of Pershing Securities Canada, its new Canadian affiliate, with the TSX. Pershing says it will be rolling out its custody, clearing and execution services to Canadian advisors and broker-dealers later in 2012. Pershing Canada says it has successfully completed its initial testing and has planned a phased launch that will start with its first client being brought onto the platform in the fourth quarter of 2012. Pershing Canada plans to first offer its solutions to institutional firms that are IIROC members, followed by retail-oriented IIROC members. In addition, Pershing is planning the development of a new office in Toronto.
2012-07-10 - BNY Mellon is pushing for new business in Eastern Canada. To that end, BNY Trust Company of Canada has hired Brad Foley as VP and business development officer for the region, which includes Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes. He will be responsible for "increasing the company's sales coverage" throughout the region, according to a statement. Foley, who was most recently an assistant VP of business development for Computershare Trust Company of Canada, will be based in Toronto.
2012-04-10 - Canada's banks are collectively the soundest in the world, according to Moody's Investors Service, which recommended the financial institutions to jittery global investors. The agency rated all of Canada's big banks at double-A2 or better, higher than bank rankings in the U.S., Europe, the Asia-Pacific region and other areas of the world. Canada's big banks also posted good results in the first quarter of 2012, the agency noted. "The combination of strong underlying credit fundamentals, a prudent regulatory environment, sound government fiscal management policies, and a more stable real estate market have all contributed to the superior standing of Canada's banks," senior director Allerton Smith said in the report.
2012-02-07 - The gap between healthy banks and those that remain in the doldrums will fuel acquisition activity in the coming years, a Virginia investment management firm predicts. FJ Capital Management published an updated version of a 2011 white paper that argues an M&A wave is coming, even though the activity last year was a letdown. In 2011, 159 open-bank deals were announced, down from 175 in 2010. The rebound could even eclipse 1994, a blockbuster year for M&A following the economic downturn of the late 1980s and early 1990s. That year 526 deals were announced.
2011-12-01 - Canada's economic, fiscal and financial strengths are helping to increase business investment in the country, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said. Flaherty said that Canada’s strong economic fundamentals, sound fiscal management and well-supervised financial sector support increasing business investment. Flaherty cited international recognition of Canada’s financial sector leadership, noting that for four consecutive years the World Economic Forum has rated Canada’s banking system as the world’s soundest.
2011-08-14 - Bank of America agreed to sell an approximately $8.6 billion Canadian card unit to Toronto-Dominion Bank and exit U.K. and Irish card markets as the firm limits international consumer lending. TD will pay $7.6 billion for Bank of America’s MBNA Canada unit and assume about $1.1 billion in liabilities. Bank of America’s portfolios in the U.K. and Ireland have a combined $19 billion in credit card loans and more than 4,000 employees, the bank said.
2011-07-05 - As Canadian hedge fund managers grab the attention of global investors, many are setting up offshore investment vehicles to capture the new money, reports The Wall Street Journal. The offshore products allow non-Canadians to invest in Canadian funds without being subject to a 25% tax on dividends. The heightened interest from foreign investors will likely give a boost to the $9 billion Canadian hedge fund industry. To global investors, Canadian funds, many of which invest in mining and resource businesses, represent a way to tap the commodity rally driven by growing emerging markets.
2011-06-26 - A new wave of investment groups is flooding the ETF market in Canada; Vanguard Group and PowerShares are joining First Asset Capital in offering ETFs in Canada. BMO Western Canada ETF head Mark Webster, responding to Vanguard's announcement, said: "Obviously it's a huge competitor, but the reality is that when you have somebody of that stature coming into the Canadian marketplace, it's going to attract a lot of attention to the ETF world, and all the participants are going to be beneficiaries."
2011-06-26 - Reuters reports that bank M&A in Asia is set to accelerate as small and inefficient lenders in the region look to attain scale and drive shareholder returns. In addition, cross-border deal activity will likely be limited by the foreign ownership restrictions in many countries in the region with an estimated $16 billion worth of live or planned deals between banks, bankers say. Overall, dealmaking in Asia grew at a healthy pace in the first half of 2011, driven largely by the material and industrial sectors and showing buyers were unfazed by slowing economic growth in China and India and rising interest rates in many parts of Asia.
2011-06-23 - U.S. Bank announced the Canadian launch of its Payment Plus tool, which replaces traditional payment methods with cardless accounts that use dynamic credit adjustment, single use accounts or straight-through processing to pay vendor invoices.
2011-06-20 - Kansas City-based DST Systems Inc. has bought Subserveo Inc., a broker-dealer and investment adviser firm in Vancouver. Subserveo's systems allow compliance officers and branch managers to conduct automated oversight of daily trading activity and the suitability of investments for customers.
2011-06-06 - Pennsylvania-based investment management company Vanguard is expanding in Canada with the creation of Vanguard Investments Canada. The firm's focus will be to offer investment products to Canadian investors through investment advisors. The Canadian operation will have its head office in Toronto.
2011-06-05 - A trade, tourism and investment trip in China led by Calgary Economic Development, as well as Tourism Calgary, generated a commitment from Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), the country's biggest bank, to open a branch in Calgary. The bank does a lot work for oil companies and has a market capitalization of more than $250 billion.
2011-05-31 - U.S. private equity firms are increasingly eager to buy assets in Canada, an RBC investment banker says. "I would say the M&A business right now is pretty robust in Canada," said Alan Hibben, a managing director for M&As at Royal Bank of Canada. Hibben said Canadian M&A activity also has been driven by healthy corporate balance sheets and a debt market nearly as open as it was before the U.S. credit crisis.
2010-12-06 - Intuit Inc. announced that it has expanded the personal finance site Mint.com to cover Canada. The website connects to Canadian banks and credit union, offering consumers a variety of financial services. Mountain View, Calif.-based Intuit said Mint.com has more than doubled its user base since the acquisition to 4.5 million users, and doubled the number of financial institutions it connects to, to 16,000.
2010-12-02 - British banking giant Barclays is boosting its Canadian operations because it says, Toronto has become a financial centre worldwide. Barclays Capital opened a new Toronto office, while quietly expanding in Canada since 2007 with 65 employees working in investment offices in Toronto and Calgary. It's expecting to really step up its presence in 2011 with the addition of new sales, trading, mergers and acquisitions and foreign exchange staff.
2010-10-21 - Copenhagen-based SimCorp has opened a Toronto office as it continues to make inroads selling software to help Canadian buyside institutional investors manage their strategies at a time of increasing uncertainty in equity and other markets. SimCorp will use its Toronto office to offer local account management and technical support for its regional clients.
2010-09-30 - U.S.-based Gemalto has announced the expansion of its Burlington, Ontario facility aimed at serving its growing EMV customer base in Canada. The investment will double the capacity of the site, which is the first in Canada to personalize dual-interface smart banking cards, and accommodate the need for delivering additional cardholder services. Gemalto's Burlington facility provides EMV payment cards as well as data preparation, card personalization and fulfillment services for numerous financial institutions throughout Canada.
2010-09-30 - Apex Fund Services, of Bermuda, has boosted its North American presence with an office in Toronto, Canada. Alex Chapman will head the new office of the hedge fund administrator. Reflecting the rapid growth of Apex Fund Services, the company now has offices in 15 countries.
2010-09-09 - Canada's banking system has been ranked the worlds soundest for the third straight year by the World Economic Forum. The think-tank also puts Canada in the top 10 countries for availability of financial services, corporate ethics, and overall quality of the educational system.
2010-09-02 - BNY Mellon has announced the purchase of I3 Advisors of Toronto, an independent wealth strategy company with more than $3.8 billion in assets under advisement. This transaction represents BNY Mellon's first wealth management acquisition in Canada. "Together, we will be able to build on the success of I3 to offer a whole new level of service to wealthy investors. Canada's high net-worth market represents a very attractive opportunity for BNY Mellon as we accelerate our global expansion and seize new opportunities in dynamic markets," said BNY Mellon Wealth Management CEO Larry Hughes.
2010-08-12 - Industrial and business houses may be allowed to set up banks, with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) saying it could be one way to broaden the reach of banking in the country and thereby achieve inclusive growth. The RBI has laid out options for the minimum capital required and the extent of promoter shareholding where it has highlighted the Canadian model. It has also said that the aggregate non-resident investment, including FDI, NRI and FII, could be capped a suitable level below 50% and locked at this level for 10 years.
2010-07-14 - After slashing its global operations over the past two years, Citigroup Inc. is girding for expansion in Canada. The bank is shifting gears at its Toronto headquarters after tapping a new head of Canadian operations. John Hastings, a long-time Citigroup executive in Canada who was named to the job this month, said that his goal over the next three years is to build up the corporate and investment banking business in Toronto, Montreal and Calgary, while also repairing the bank's bruised image.
2010-07-07 - Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) will begin retail and corporate banking operations under the banner Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (Canada), the bank recently. ICBC Canada will provide a business platform for ICBC to further expand into the Canadian market and further strengthen the ICBC’s North American presence. The new bank will have a client base of around 10,000 retail and corporate customers. Jiang Jianqing, chairman of ICBC, noted that Canada was one of the most important markets in the world. "One of Canada's strengths is the country's advanced and prudent financial regulatory system. With such network in place, I am confident in the growth opportunities for our Canadian subsidiary in the years to come," he said.
2010-06-17 - India's second largest public sector lender Punjab National Bank (PNB) is planning an international expansion to double revenues from international operations by 2013, chairman and managing director, KR Kamath, said. "The bank is planning to start a subsidiary in Canada to tap its huge Punjabi population," he added.
2010-06-16 - Willis Re, the reinsurance arm of London-based Willis Group Holdings, announced the establishment of a new office in Toronto, Canada. The office will complement Willis Group's existing presence in Toronto. Willis also has offices in Montreal, Vancouver and Calgary. According to this press release, Toronto is fast becoming the hub of the Canadian insurance industry, which has shown steady growth in recent years. Peter Hearn, CEO, Willis Re, said: "Adding an office in Toronto will enable us to build on our success in Canada and offer an enhanced level of service to our current and future clients."
2010-06-09 - Global Special Risks, an insurance broker and managing general agent, has established a Canadian presence with the opening of an office in Calgary, Alberta. "Calgary gives us a solid base upon which to expand our business throughout Canada," said Rick Burns, president of GSR.
2010-06-08 - Arch Re Facultative will be opening an office in Montreal, Quebec, that further extends the company's commitment to the Canadian reinsurance market. The new office further extends the company's commitment to the Canadian reinsurance market, and will focus on supporting the existing relationships already established by Arch Re Facultative’s office in Toronto as well as further developing business in the Province of Quebec and the Atlantic Provinces.
2010-06-07 - Buffalo-based M&T Bank, a major player in U.S. commercial bank circles, opened an office in Toronto as part of the bank' attempt to build on century-old relationship to companies doing business across the Ontario-New York border. M&T Bank has 750 branches and an approximately $9-billion market capitalization.
2010-05-30 - QBE European Operations, a specialist business insurer, will open an office in Toronto for the business it writes through Lloyd's for the Canadian commercial insurance market. The Toronto team will develop new business from the Canadian market, and provide local support and claims handling service. QBE plans to expand its offerings to the Canadian marketplace, particularly to increase its small- and medium-sized enterprise E&O business, a QBE says.
The Royal Bank of Scotland said it's opening an oil and gas advisory in Calgary. The Edinburgh-based RBS said it will open the Calgary office to take advantage of the economic recovery in the city's oil and gas sector. RBS said this is move is a vote of confidence in the Canadian oilpatch. Calgary will be an extension of the bank's Houston practice and its oil and gas advisory in the United States, which carries out reserves-based lending, mergers and acquisitions and risk management services for large and mid-cap firms where RBS had previously concentrated on Canadian large caps.
Total profits for Canada's six biggest banks surged to $5.3 billion in the first quarter as loan losses fell and their domestic operations flourished. The positive earnings were driven by strong growth in mortgage lending and other domestic business. Those profits are about 75% higher than they were in the first quarter last year. None had a return on equity below 14%.
eFront, a provider of financial solutions specialising in Alternative Investments and Risk Management, listed on the on Alternext stock exchange in Paris, announced the opening of a new office in Montreal. The new office will focus on Private Equity and Real Estate investment sectors in Canada. The Montreal office provides eFront with access to a dynamic financial community in North America. Canadian Private Equity deals are expected to rise as much as 30% in 2010.
Barclays Bank announced it has successfully secured a bank license from the Canadian banking regulator to commence and carry on business as a foreign bank branch under the name Barclays Bank PLC, Canada Branch. The bank branch will enable Barclays Bank to lend to its corporate clients and is complementary to the investment banking and capital markets services offered by Barclays Capital through its existing Canadian presence.
R.J. O'Brien & Associates (RJO), an independent futures brokerage firm in the United States, announced that it has been admitted to membership in the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC), enabling the firm to open R.J. O'Brien & Associates Canada Inc. in Winnipeg. The regulatory approval marks the first time the nearly 100-year-old firm is operating a subsidiary in Canada.
Paul Volcker, the former U.S. Federal Reserve Board chairman who's now a key economic advisor to the White House, told U.S. lawmakers they ought to learn from Canada's banking system as they seek to overhaul rules governing the biggest U.S. banks. Volcker said that With just five or six banks dominating the industry, Canada's banks benefit from having less competition. He added that Canada's banking system also has been shielded by the fact that it has less government interference in its mortgage market.
HSBC has opened a global software development facility at Discovery Green in Burnaby, British Columbia. The five-storey, $47-million building includes 146,000 square feet of office space and accommodates more than 850 employees developing software solutions for HSBC operations around the world. The building has been awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) platinum environmental standard for its core and shell.
The province of Ontario is working with the financial sector to help create jobs and opportunity for the province. A new council of CEOs from Canada's biggest financial services companies met with Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty. The council aims to make Ontario one of the top 10 financial centres in the world. More than 350,000 people are employed in Ontario's financial and insurance sector. Toronto has the third largest concentration of financial services jobs in North America.
Toronto's financial services industry has a golden opportunity to play a starring role in Ontario's economic renaissance if it champions a proposed strategy to create up to 40,000 jobs over the next five years, a new report says. Entitled Partnership and Action: Mobilizing Toronto's Financial Sector for Global Advantage, the report argues the world's financial industry remains in flux, making the time ripe for the Toronto region to bolster its global competitiveness to become one of the world's top 10 financial hubs. By doing so, the sector would not only create an additional 25,000 to 40,000 direct and indirect jobs, but also would generate an extra $4 billion to $5 billion in annual gross domestic product over five years. The sector currently contributes about $30 billion per year in direct GDP in the Toronto region.
The Canadian banking industry is appropriately managing its risks, credit rating agency DBRS has found. The banks have strong earnings before loan losses and taxes and capital levels sufficient to absorb potential losses that would result from risk-taking. In terms of credit risk, DBRS notes that its outlook remains strong, notwithstanding the ongoing rise in loan loss provisions. The outlook is supported by the diversification of the loan portfolio, with a high proportion of consumer lending versus corporate and government loans.
Canadian banks, bolstered by their reputation as the world’s soundest, are adding investment bankers even after rivals slashed almost 316,000 jobs worldwide since the collapse of the U.S. subprime market in 2007. Canadian lenders have remained profitable amid the crisis because of tighter restrictions on lending and higher capital requirements. The World Economic Forum named Canada as home to the world’s soundest banks for the second straight year.
Key policy makers in Washington appear inclined to mimic the Canadian approach when it comes to regulating the financial system. Experts say there is broad international convergence toward the Canadian model, whereby oversight of the broader financial system is the responsibility of a committee of high-ranking officials, most notably the Minister of Finance, Bank of Canada governor and head of the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions. The C.D. Howe Institute said Canada’s record of good management, good regulation and good luck in terms of financial market stability is earning well-deserved kudos from abroad.
Maples Finance, a fund administrator that provides a range of fund administration services, announced the expansion of its global presence with the opening of a Montreal office to service the North American region and its growing fund administration business. The office will have eventual capacity in excess of 50 people. Maples chose Montreal because of its base of trained local financial services and technology professionals, its a large cosmopolitan city with a well-educated population, its diverse demographic and multi-lingual capabilities and world-class universities.
Fidelity Investments Canada officially opened its new Montreal office, home to members of Fidelity's Team Canada, as well as its top-ranked retail and institutional sales and servicing teams. Founded in Boston in 1997, Fidelity's Team Canada is comprised of 24 portfolio managers and research analysts who manage some of Canada's most successful equity mutual funds and institutional investment disciplines. Fidelity's Canadian equity mutual funds cover the spectrum of the equity sectors and are well regarded for their long-term, consistent performance.
Canada's banks are basking in the afterglow of a strong third-quarter performance that came amid a worldwide financial crisis in which a multitude of other financial institutions around the world failed. Senior executives trumpeted the gains banks made while looking forward to some of the opportunities the global meltdown has opened up for them, especially in terms of acquisitions.
Orbis Investment Management Services, a Bermuda-based financial management firm with over $17 Billion under management, recently established its first Canadian office in Vancouver. Orbis selected Vancouver because of its talented workforce and established technology sector. Vancouver is one of the Orbis group’s three major centres of operation.
Dexia Asset Management will open a new office in Toronto in a attempt to break into the Canadian marketplace. The Belgium -based company specializes in financial analysis, fund management and institutional and private mandates. The company has $120 billion in assets under management. Dexia is particularly active in the area of sustainable and responsible investing.
Canada has again won the top rating in the world for the soundness of its banking sector. The World Economic Forum places Canada's banks as the soundest in the world for the second straight year. The banking sector is one of the criteria the organization uses to rate countries in terms of overall competitiveness. Canada moved up to ninth place from 10th last year and from 13th in 2007 for overall competitiveness.
Calgary will host the meeting of a group that finances development projects in Latin America and the Caribbean. The city will hold the meeting of the Inter-American Development bank in 2011. Prime Minister Stephen Harper says the decision reflects Calgary's rising status as a global financial centre. The meeting will bring thousands of international bankers, business people and national leaders to Calgary.
All of Canada’s Big Five banks have earned a spot on Global Finance’s annual list of the 50 safest banks in the world. The ranking was compiled using a comparison of the long-term credit ratings and total assets of the 500 largest banks around the world.
EnnisKnupp, an investment consulting firm based in Chicago that focuses on developing client-specific solutions for investment programs, announced that it will be opening an office in Toronto to meet the growing demand. EnnisKnupp works with a diverse client base of over 160 pension plans, endowments, foundations, and not-for-profits representing more than $1 trillion in assets. The company's line of business is providing results-oriented advice to institutional investors.
Canadian banks reaffirmed the strength of their franchises in the third quarter, with most reporting rising profits despite setting aside more money for souring loans. For the most part, the six banks have the Canadian market to themselves -- and now some are looking to bolster or buy U.S. operations. Canadian banks also have gained relative heft as a result of the crisis, as many of their global competitors shrank.
Huron Capital Partners, based in Michigan, announced that it has opened an office in Toronto to accelerate the expansion of its Canadian portfolio of equity investments. Over the past three years, Huron has committed over $25 million to Canadian-based companies. Huron Capital is a private equity firm investing in lower middle-market companies.
Money transfer firm iRemit of the Philippines has opened its fifth Canadian branch in Edmonton. Canada is the company's strongest market. The move will create more synergies between the company's core remittance services and its Chinese remittance business.
Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty and Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney will travel to China to promote the country’s financial industry and help win business for its banks. Flaherty said that Canada's banks are already active in China and looking to expand. Canada's financial sector is looking to partner with Chinese companies in their global transactions.
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