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Canadian Regulator to Review Senior Hires at Banks

Canada’s banking regulator said it will review candidates for senior management positions at financial institutions before they’re hired.

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions said it wants federally regulated financial institutions, including banks, insurers, holding companies, and co-operatives, to disclose senior management candidates to the regulator so it can offer comments and raise concerns to a company’s board. After a candidate joins, OSFI may request a meeting with the new executive.

“OSFI is focused on a potential candidate’s record and suitability in respect of risk awareness and sensitivity” to a financial institution’s safety and soundness, the regulator said today in an advisory. OSFI said that the companies have final say on hires, and that it won’t be vetting or approving candidates.

Among companies affected by the new rules are the country’s largest lenders, including Toronto-Dominion Bank and the Royal Bank of Canada, as well as insurers Manulife Financial Corp. and Great-West Lifeco Inc.

The rules are effective immediately.

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