Canadian Bankers Association

Canadian Bankers Association

October 09, 2009 14:22 ET

International Financial Experts Agree: Canadians Have the Best Banks in the World

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 9, 2009) - For the second year running, Moody's Investor Service has ranked Canada's banks as number one in the world in terms of financial strength. This follows the recent ranking of Canada's banks as number one in the world for soundness by the World Economic Forum (WEF), also for two years running.

"The international recognition for Canada's banks confirms the fact that our banks are well managed and use prudent lending practices and this benefits Canadians," said Nancy Hughes Anthony, President and CEO of the Canadian Bankers Association. "While the recognition is appreciated, what is really important to remember is that our banks have not been a burden to taxpayers and they continue lending to consumers and businesses during the global economic downturn. Banks are playing an important role in Canada's economic recovery."

Banks in Canada have taken a prudent approach to lending which has allowed them to avoid the financial difficulties that banks in other countries have experienced. In a survey by The Strategic Counsel, 81 per cent of respondents believe that prudent lending is a key reason why Canadian banks have performed better than their international peers.

Canada's banks are also among the best capitalized in the world and have been strengthening their capital levels by raising new capital from investors and through retained earnings. This allows the banks to continue to lend and provides a cushion against loan losses. Moreover, Canadian taxpayers have not had to bail out or inject capital into our financial institutions.

Despite tough economic times, credit has continued to be available to creditworthy businesses and banks have helped fill a credit gap as some lenders have slowed their financing or left the Canadian market completely. Banks are also working in collaboration with the federal government's Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP) as an extra effort to find credit solutions for creditworthy business clients during this challenging economic time.

"While the international attention is new, banks in Canada have a proud history of helping our country prosper and today our strong and stable banking system is at the heart of Canada's economic recovery and long-term growth," said Ms. Hughes Anthony. "Our banks are a Canadian success story that all Canadians, and our government, should be proud of."

The Canadian Bankers Association works on behalf of 50 domestic banks, foreign bank subsidiaries and foreign bank branches operating in Canada and their 263,400 employees. The CBA advocates for effective public policies that contribute to a sound, successful banking system that benefits Canadians and Canada's economy. The Association also promotes financial literacy to help Canadians make informed financial decisions. www.cba.ca.

Contact Information

  • Canadian Bankers Association
    Andrew Addison
    (416) 362-6093, ext. 220 or Cell: (416) 587-7733
    aaddison@cba.ca