JUNE/JULY 2015: Articles from our monthly print edition

15 Jul 2015

CRM2 risks exacerbating differences between life insurance and investment sectors

+-*Louis Morisset, CEO of the Autorité des marchés financiers, openly admits that the Client Relationship Model Phase 2 (CRM2) risks exacerbating differences between the life insurance and investment sectors.

13 Jul 2015

Longevity insurance aims to shore up defined benefit pension plans

+-*A strategy recently introduced into Canada may help dispel the dilemma that Canada’s all-time high proportion of seniors, coupled with medical breakthroughs, will be the bane of defined benefit pension plans and a drain on our economy.

13 Jul 2015

The new economic tempo: slow and low

+-*The Bank of Canada surprised markets in January when it lowered the overnight rate to 0.75%, where it has remained. Is this the new norm? Avery Shenfeld, chief economist at CIBC World Markets, says that while interest rates may slowly begin to rise by the end of next year, investors should prepare for an era of low growth and a low Canadian dollar.

13 Jul 2015

Segregated funds: Yvon Charest decries disclosure

+-*When regulation on disclosure of mutual fund commissions takes effect on July 15, 2016, segregated funds will be spared. This reality irks several mutual fund players, but Yvon Charest, CEO of iA Financial Group, is defending the status quo.

08 Jul 2015

Target benefit plans offer a new way to share risk

+-*Unable to bear the costs associated with traditional pensions, employers have been moving away from defined benefits (DB) and towards defined contribution (DC) plans for years. However, the risk in DC plans lies entirely with the members, who must choose their own investments and no longer know how much of a retirement income to expect. Does it have to be a zero sum game? Is there a way to offer predictable retirement income but spread the risk more evenly between employers and employees?

06 Jul 2015

Segregated funds soar in 2014

+-*Premiums deposited in segregated funds surged by 20% in 2014 versus 2013. The results mark the first growth this product has seen since its 2009 tailspin triggered by the crisis.

02 Jul 2015

Whole life falters in fourth quarter

+-*Whole life insurance and term insurance sales slumped in the fourth quarter of 2014, dragging down overall individual life insurance compared with the same quarter in 2013. During this period, universal life sales rebounded robustly.

30 Jun 2015

Critical illness insurance sales stagnate in 2014

+-*New premiums in critical illness insurance stagnated in 2014 compared with 2013. During this period, the number of CI policies edged up only 2%. This anemic growth is due to lower sales for the permanent product.

29 Jun 2015

Lifecos shift focus to pursue growth

+-*They may not be immediately apparent, but several notable shifts are afoot in Canadian life insurance – changes which could have interesting repercussions in the industry – as many companies emerge from more than five years of intent, internal focus on operational and regulatory demands typical of the business today.

26 Jun 2015

U.K. looks at New Brunswicks shared risk model for pension regulation

+-*The United Kingdom has undergone myriad changes with its federal pension plan, and is now looking at the University of New Brunswick’s shared risk model to potentially develop new regulations in the future, the head of product strategy and liaison from the Universities Superannuation Scheme told a Conference Board of Canada conference in April.

25 Jun 2015

Regulatory awakening increases need for information sharing solutions

+-*A “regulatory awakening” is taking place in the insurance industry, increasing the need for carriers, distributors and advisors to share information required to comply with these new rules, the Canadian Life Insurance EDI Standards (CLIEDIS) annual seminar in Toronto was told.

23 Jun 2015

Advicelets from the 2015 Canada Sales Congress

+-*The Canada Sales Congress always leaves delegates with business gems, any one of which has the power to make them a master. Here are my top “advicelets” from the 2015 CSC – the quick, smart and simple ideas that make a big difference.

23 Jun 2015

No spousal rollover where beneficiaries assign rather than disclaim RRSP

+-*When a person dies, RRSP holdings are generally brought into income in the deceased’s terminal tax year. However, where there is a beneficiary designation to a spouse (or certain dependents), a tax-deferred refund of premiums enables a rollover to the recipient’s RRSP.

23 Jun 2015

“The status quo is no longer an option” – Donald Guloien, Manulife CEO

+-*In recent months, Donald Guloien has hammered in the same message: “the status quo is no longer an option.” It first surfaced in Manulife Financial’s annual report, he repeated it at the annual shareholder meeting and in the announcements of results for first quarter 2015 on May 7. He echoed this refrain at Manulife’s Investor Day on May 11.