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Finance Canada
Reforming Canada's Financial Services Sector --
A Framework for the Future:
  Annex B
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Annex B
Sector Overview

Despite the tendency to discuss financial sector policy largely with reference to the largest domestic banks, the sector is more complex and dynamic than this would suggest. A wide range of firms of different types, regulated and unregulated, domestic and foreign, are already active in the Canadian market.

In addition to the traditional regulated financial institutions with an extensive history, Canadian consumers can increasingly turn to a small but growing number of new, unregulated financial service providers. While their share of total financial sector industry assets is still small, it can be expected that this share will grow over time.

The table below summarizes the main economic indicators for the major components of the sector.

"Canadians today can choose from a wider range of suppliers of financial services than at any other time in our historyâ¦."

Task Force on the Future of the Canadian Financial Services Sector, Change, Challenge, Opportunity: Competition, Competitiveness and the Public Interest, Background Paper #1, September 1998, p. 35 (Adobe Acrobat format).

Financial Services Sector Overview, 1997


No. of companies Total assets
($ millions)
Capital ($ millions) Total revenue ($ millions Net income ($ millions) No. of employees Notes

Banks (includes subsidiaries)

55

1,322,085

54,699

42,124

7,954

219,977

1, 2, 3

Canadian

11

1,229,864

49,767

39,629

7,550

211,398

1, 2, 3

Foreign

44

92,221

4,932

2,494

404

8,579

1, 2, 3, 4

Trusts (excludes bank subsidiaries)

23

52,178

2,418

2,353

553

22,900

1, 3, 5

Credit unions and caisses populaires

2,315

121,100

6,825

5,905

567

61,600

3, 5, 6, 7, 9

Provincial government- owned banks

2

11,131

n/a

337

92

3,361

3, 8

Federal life insurance companies

121

279,774

28,002

59,726

2,771

60,770

1, 3, 5, 9

Canadian

54

255,826

23,629

54,213

2,386

n/a

1, 3, 9, 11

Foreign

67

23,948

4,373

5,514

385

n/a

1, 3, 9, 12

Provincial life insurance companies

26

13,920

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

10

Property and casualty insurance companies

216

53,014

15,513

19,110

1,866

37,055

1, 3, 5, 9

Canadian

97

37,105

n/a

13,985

1,363

n/a

1, 3, 11

Foreign

119

15,909

n/a

5,125

503

n/a

1, 3, 12

Securities dealers(includes bank subsidiaries)

187

158,200

3,526

8,478

769

32,900

13

Mutual funds

73

283,159

n/a

n/a

n/a

35,000

14

n/a means not available

Notes:

1. Source: OSFI as at December 31,1997.
2. Number of employees is full-time equivalent.
3. Total revenue is defined as the sum of net interest income plus other income.
4. This estimate assumes that full-time equivalent employment equals 85% of total employment.
5. Source for number of employees: Task Force on the Future of the Canadian Financial Services Sector, Change, Challenge, Opportunity: Competition, Competitiveness and the Public Interest, Background Paper #1, September 1998, p. 38 (Adobe Acrobat format).
6. Sources: Credit Union Central of Canada and the annual report of Le Mouvement Desjardins.
7. Source: Statistics Canada, Catalogue no. 61-008-XPB, fourth quarter 1998.
8. Sources: annual reports of Alberta Treasury Branches and the Province of Ontario Savings Office.
9. Source for Capital: Task Force, Background Paper #1, p. 38   (Adobe Acrobat format).
10. This estimate excludes assets of SMDA Insurance Corp, for which data were not available.
11. Includes Canadian subsidiaries and foreign companies.
12. Comprised of Canadian branches of foreign companies.
13. Source: Task Force, Background Paper #, p. 38  (Adobe Acrobat format).
14. Source: Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC). Number of employees was estimated by the IFIC; includes employees of bank-owned funds (also included in banks' figures).

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