Bank Regulatory Structure:


GGD-95-223: Published: Sep 28, 1995. Publicly Released: Oct 3, 1995.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Canadian bank regulatory structure and its key participants.

GAO found that: (1) the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) is the primary supervisor of Canadian financial institutions and is responsible for incorporating financial institutions, issuing regulations and guidelines, taking enforcement actions, and resolving problems; (2) OSFI has the authority to examine all of the activities of Canadian financial institutions, but securities activities conducted in subsidiaries are reviewed by provincial securities regulators; (3) OSFI relies on external auditors for assessments of the institutions' financial statements or anything that might affect the institutions' well-being; (4) the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation has a secondary supervisory role in issuing standards, but it takes the lead in resolving failed institutions; (5) the Minister of Finance has final decisionmaking authority over key supervisory decisions, such as closing an institution; (6) the Bank of Canada's supervisory role is limited to providing information to other participants in the decisionmaking process; (7) the four regulatory agencies share in certain financial responsibilities such as liquidity provision, crisis management, and international representation; and (8) two primary committees have been established to improve the relationships and sharing of information among the regulatory agencies.

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