The saga of the unnamed bank: FinTRAC issues a statement

In April 2016, Canadian news media reported that the Financial Transactions Reports Analysis Centre (FinTRAC) had levied a penalty of over $1 million against an unnamed Canadian bank for certain violations of its anti-money laundering requirements.  Since then, FinTRAC has continued to face criticism from the public and the media for its decision to withhold … Continue Reading

Financial services regulatory: 7 developments to watch in 2017

Happy 2017! Financial services regulation continued to be busy in Canada in 2016. We have prepared this shortlist of pending changes, developments and consultations to watch as we start 2017. 1.  New draft OSFI guideline: enterprise-wide model risk management OSFI released a new draft Guideline E-23 – Enterprise-Wide Model Risk Management on December 21, 2016. … Continue Reading

Bank Act financial consumer protection amendments delayed

The proposed amendments to the Bank Act (Canada) (the Amendments) which would add a Financial Consumer Protection Framework (the Framework) (described in our recent post) will be withdrawn from Bill C-29. Bill C-29 passed third reading in the House of Commons and is currently before the Senate of Canada. News reports indicate that the Finance Minister, Bill Morneau, agreed to remove … Continue Reading

Bank Act Financial Consumer Protection Framework passes third reading in House of Commons

Bill C-29, Budget Implementation Act, 2016, No. 2, (Bill C-29) passed third reading in the House of Commons on December 6, 2016. Once passed by the Senate and brought into force, Bill C-29 will amend the Bank Act (Canada) (the Bank Act) to enact the long awaited Financial Consumer Protection Framework that was promised by … Continue Reading

Government announces further mortgage restrictions

The federal government has announced further restrictions that will make it more difficult for some borrowers to get mortgage loans and make it more costly for foreigners to speculate in the real estate market. Under current rules, a federally regulated mortgage lender may not make a loan on the security of a residential property if … Continue Reading

Germany joins the blog

Our Regulation tomorrow blog goes from strength to strength, with the addition of Germany to our existing coverage of Africa, Asia, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands and the United States.  EU-level updates will also be featured on our new German page. New blog posts from Germany include: Ban on CFDs by BaFin … Continue Reading

Pressure groups issue comments on the planned prohibition of credit-linked notes

As reported in a previous article, the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht – BaFin) has organized a public hearing on the prohibition of the marketing, distribution and sale of certificates linked to creditworthiness risks (“credit-linked notes” (Bonitätsanleihen)) to retail clients within the meaning of section 31a (3) of the German Securities Trading Act (Wertpapierhandelsgesetz … Continue Reading

FATF Mutual Evaluation of Canada report released

On September 15th, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) released its Mutual Evaluation Report (Report) of Canada’s measures for combatting anti-money laundering (AML) and the financing of terrorism (CFT).  FATF is an international organization originally formed by the G-7 countries in 1989.  FATF has developed 40 Recommendations for measures that countries should take to combat … Continue Reading

Targeted Review of Deposit Insurance Launched

On September 16th, the Department of Finance announced the launch of a public consultation on the deposit insurance regime for banks, federally regulated trust and loan companies and certain provincially regulated institutions.  There is no indication when the Government proposes to complete its review but comments are requested by November 30th. The Consultation Paper states … Continue Reading

Government to Conduct Further Assessment on Interchange Fees

The Minister of Finance issued a statement on September 14th on the status of each of Visa and MasterCard’s commitments to reduce the fees merchants are charged to accept credit cards (Interchange Fees).  The statement acknowledges the independent audit findings of both Visa and MasterCard indicating that they have each met their commitments to reduce … Continue Reading

Government launches 2019 financial sector review

On August 26th, the federal Department of Finance launched a review of the legislation governing banks, insurance companies and trust companies under federal jurisdiction by issuing an initial consultation paper. The initial paper sets out some key facts relating to the sector and comments on trends that are currently impacting and are expected to continue … Continue Reading

OSFI issues strong reminder on mortgage lending practices

The high-paced growth of residential home prices, particularly in the Vancouver and Toronto markets, is continuing to generate concern both from the Bank of Canada and the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI). In its semi-annual Financial System Review, released on June 6th, the Bank noted that the vulnerability of the financial sector … Continue Reading

Canadian anti-money laundering regulations updated

On June 29, 2016, the federal Government published the final version of the long-awaited regulations (Amending Regulations) to amend various regulations (Regulations) under the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA). The Amending Regulations came into force on June 30, 2016, however, there is an almost one year delay for the provisions … Continue Reading

New FinTRAC Guidance – ID Verification

Since July 2015, when draft amendments to the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Regulations (Draft Regulations) were published in the Canada Gazette, the industry has been expecting changes to aspects of the current AML/TF regime, particularly with respect to customer identification. After a lengthy delay, caused at least in part by the … Continue Reading

Competition Bureau launches study of FinTech and Financial Sector Regulation

On May 19, 2016, the Competition Bureau of Canada (the Bureau) launched a market study FinTech in Canada.  The Bureau enforces and administers the Competition Act (Canada) and as part of its mandate participates in activities to promote a competitive marketplace. The purpose of the study, as described by the Bureau, is to advise and … Continue Reading

Automated Clearing and Settlement System Designated as Prominent

On May 2, 2016, the Bank of Canada designated the Automated Clearing and Settlement System (ACSS) operated by the Canadian Payments Association as a system that has the potential to pose payment system risk (a Prominent Payment System). This designation means that the ACCS will now be overseen by the Bank of Canada in accordance … Continue Reading

Proposed Bail-In Legislation Introduced

On April 20th, the Federal Government introduced legislation to implement a bail-in regime for domestic systemically important banks (D-SIB). The regime is intended to reduce the likelihood that one of these banks would require a government bail-out in the event that the bank experienced significant losses. The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) … Continue Reading

The Curious Case of the FINTRAC Penalty

On April 5th, newspapers in Canada began reporting that the Financial Transactions Reports and Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) had imposed its first ever penalty on a bank.  FINTRAC is the government agency created by the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Finance Act (PCMLTFA) to receive reports from banks and other reporting entities … Continue Reading

Federal Budget 2016 – Financial Services Regulatory Update

On March 22nd, the recently elected Liberal Government introduced its first budget since being elected last October.  In the Budget Plan, the Government has promised certain measures that will be relevant to banks, insurance companies and other providers of financial services and products.  Most of the proposed measures are similar to proposals that were raised … Continue Reading

Court: Network-Branded Prepaid Cards Subject to Consumer Protection Law

In a class action certification motion decision, (Jiang v. Peoples Trust Company 2016 BCSC 368), the Supreme Court of British Columbia concluded that general purpose network-branded prepaid cards are subject to the provisions of British Columbia’s consumer protection legislation, the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act (BPCPA). The Court, however, denied certification to the plaintiffs … Continue Reading

Bill Proposes to Cap Credit Card Interchange Fees

A Liberal private member’s bill (Bill C-236) to amend the Payment Card Networks Act (Canada) (the PCN Act) went through first reading in the House of Commons on February 25th. The bill would amend the PCN Act to provide for a limit on “credit card acceptance fees”. The bill does not specify an actual rate … Continue Reading

Ontario to revise regulation of credit unions

The Government of Ontario has announced that it plans to update the Credit Unions and Caisses Populaires Act (Act) to implement recommendations made in a recent report prepared by Laura Albanese, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Finance.  Credit unions and caisse populaires are financial institutions formed under the jurisdiction of the province that provide … Continue Reading