TORONTO (Reuters) – Sun Life Financial (SLF.TO: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is sticking with an admittedly “ambitious” target of C$2 billion ($2.00 billion) in operating profit by 2015, despite a difficult outlook for financial markets, the Canadian insurer’s chief executive said Thursday.
Sun Life unveiled the profit target in March, one that depends on equity markets and bond yields rising from the levels of earlier this year. While stock markets have edged higher, bond yields have remained low and few economists project an imminent rebound.
Nov 8 (Reuters) – Manulife Financial Corp has
pushed out its profit goal of C$4 billion by a year to 2016,
citing macro-economic conditions, although its quarterly loss
narrowed due to stronger financial markets-related results
during the quarter.
The improved markets performance helped to offset a C$1
billion charge related to a shift in actuarial assumptions,
Canada’s largest life insurer said on Thursday.
TORONTO, Nov 4 (Reuters) – Even if Canadian life insurers
live up to expectations by posting strong third-quarter results
this week, investors ought to think twice before piling into
their shares given the uncertain outlook for financial markets.
With debt crises in Europe and the United States pressuring
stocks and threatening another severe market downturn, analysts
say one or more of the insurers could cut profit targets when
they start reporting results on Wednesday.
TORONTO (Reuters) – Call it the Homer Simpson approach to business growth: when the pie is shrinking, eat a bigger piece.
Canada’s big banks have been doing just that. Facing slower growth in the mortgage market and an unofficial government ban on buying one another, the five biggest lenders have been ravenously snapping up any other financial assets that have become available. It’s a trend that looks set to continue.
Oct 31 (Reuters) – Bank of Nova Scotia has
appointed Brian Porter to the role of president, Canada’s No. 3
bank said on Wednesday, a move that suggests he will eventually
succeed longtime Chief Executive Rick Waugh.
Porter, 54, who joined the Toronto-based bank in 1981, is
currently group head of its strategically important
international banking division, which has operations in about 50
countries through Latin America and Asia.
NEW YORK/TORONTO, Oct 26 (Reuters) – Moody’s Investors
Service warned on Friday it could cut its ratings on five top
Canadian banks on concerns about a softening economy and
volatile capital markets, a blow to a banking system named the
soundest in the world four years in a row.
But the outlook for the sector is no longer as rosy, Moody’s
said, because of the risks presented by the macroeconomic
environment and a business mix that leans heavily on domestic
mortgages and other consumer lending.
TORONTO, Oct 26 (Reuters) – Prem Watsa, investment guru and
chief executive of Fairfax Financial Holding Ltd, said
on Friday the time is not right to undo Fairfax’s equity hedges
even as the insurance company loses money due to recent strong
Watsa, who made billions for Fairfax by correctly calling
the 2008 financial crisis, fully hedged the company’s equity
exposure in 2010 in anticipation of a prolonged market funk.
His strategy has led to choppy quarterly results for Fairfax as
markets have fluctuated.
TORONTO (Reuters) – A Canadian database that allows mortgage lenders to appraise a property quickly before writing a loan may have overvalued homes in the country’s sizzling housing markets and could raise the risk of a devastating U.S.-style crash.
Some experts worry it puts lenders and mortgage insurers in a vulnerable position should the hot housing markets of Toronto, Vancouver and other big cities experience a hard landing.
TORONTO (Reuters) – When Australian film director Robert Connolly went looking for some truth about WikiLeaks’ founder Julian Assange, he didn’t turn to government documents or leaked emails of the sort that Assange’s website is famous for making public.
Instead, he focused on Assange’s past as a teenage hacker and young father growing up in suburban Melbourne, Australia, more than a decade before the launch of the website that has made him both famous and notorious.
TORONTO (Reuters) – Funnyman Bill Murray long ago mastered the ability to wring laughs by saying absurd things in a matter-of-fact tone, but even he was caught off guard when first approached to play Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the new film “Hyde Park on Hudson.”
“I thought ‘Oh God, I’m being asked to play Roosevelt?’ … How do you take this monster on?,” he said.