OTTAWA Canada’s big banks received billions in support from the federal government and the Bank of Canada during the 2008-09 financial crisis, a report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives says.
“While these funds were repaid in full, it is clear that the banks benefited enormously from public financing when private funds were unavailable,” wrote David Macdonald, author of the report released Monday.
“In addition, had the rapid and enormous deployment of public funds not been available, most, if not all, Canadian banks would have encountered serious difficulty.”
The left-leaning think-tank estimated the country’s largest financial institutions borrowed nearly $75 billion in short-term collateralized loans from the Bank of Canada and the United States Federal Reserve, peaking at $41 billion and $33 billion respectively.
The banks also sold a total of some $69 billion worth of insured mortgage-backed securities to the government, the report estimated.
The Centre for Policy Alternatives based its report on information provided by Canadian public institutions and analysis of the banks’ financial reports.