Review of retail sales practices at Canada’s big six banks

Canadian banks and foreign operations of federally regulated banks in Canada are subject to federal consumer protection legislation overseen by the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC). The FCAC completed a review of retail sales practices at Canada’s big six banks. The summary findings were released on Tuesday March 20, 2018. The review called for stronger governance and oversight but did not find widespread “mis-selling”. The FCAC review resulted in five key findings:

  1. Retail banking culture is predominantly focused on selling products and services, increasing the risk that consumers’ interests are not always given the appropriate priority.
  2. Performance management programs—including financial and non-financial incentives, sales targets and scorecards—may increase the risk of mis-selling and breaching market conduct obligations.
  3. Certain products, business practices and distribution channels present higher sales practices risk.
  4. Governance frameworks do not manage sales practices risk effectively.
  5. Controls to mitigate the risks associated with sales practices are underdeveloped.

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Tackling misconduct risk

Financial Stability Board’s areas of focus and forward agenda

As is now customary, the Financial Stability Board (FSB) published a slew of reports ahead of the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Hangzhou. These documents included a second progress report, published on 1 September, on measures to reduce misconduct risk in financial services. This follows a workplan agreed in May 2015, and a first progress report in November 2015. The latest report describes progress made since the end of 2015.

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