Coast Capital Sales Culture

Questions are being put to Canadian banks about ethical sales practices. Are consumers being sold things they do not need?  Are banks picking people’s pockets?  Such questions may also be put to Coast Capital Savings, BC’s second largest credit union, now proposing to be a bank.  The members of Coast Capital Savings Credit Union are […]

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Bankers` Long Game

warning

Consolidation and cartel building is the long term strategy of the Big Banks and it seems to go on without much alarm.  This is partly because of their patience and partly because other players are distracted by other things; technology, risk management, new capital rules, new liquidity monitoring tools,  mortgage insurance changes, etc..  But these […]

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The ‘co-op’ business model

At a meeting of local credit unions a few nights ago there was good discussion about two competing visions; (1) a network of community based credit unions who collaborate to benefit from economies of scale and (2) a large integrated national back office corporate ‘subsidiary’.  There is tension as larger credit unions express impatience, resent […]

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Privatizing Credit Unions Incrementally

A headline in Enterprise Magazine provoked me.  The text talked about ‘… collectivizing Canada’s provincial centrals and CUSO’s’ when it was introducing an article on the restructuring and streamlining of second tier entities.  In fact the reverse is true.  In our quest for greater efficiencies (and scale), control is being concentrated in fewer and fewer […]

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Mortgage Insurance Paradox

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (“CMHC”) has created what could be called a mortgage insurance empire.  With a book totaling $526B in 2015, that book alone was larger than Canada’s fifth largest bank and exceeds 1/3 the total all outstanding residential mortgages in Canada.  This coverage is sold through banks, credit unions and other lenders.  […]

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Precarious Work – Life

Sometimes it seems that credit unions are in denial, or simply averse to exploring some of the larger issues facing our memberships.  Working people, most particularly young people, are facing a very different set of challenges when it comes to ‘surviving’.  The evolution of work in the ‘contract economy’ has implications when we ask marketing […]

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What is Full and Fair?

FICOM is seeking input on the application from Coast Capital Savings to go federal.  One question posed by FICOM is, “Have members been provided with full and fair disclosure upon which to make their decision?”  Members of Coast Capital were asked to vote on a special resolution in November. “Full and fair” is not a […]

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Banks and Bubbles

A couple of days ago there was a good piece in Canadian Business.  The facts are laid out that Big Bank growth and profits track quite closely with our real estate and debt bubbles. Writer Kevin Carmichael provocatively critiques the Big Banks for their addiction to residential mortgages and their complicity in the two blights […]

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