The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) released its findings today after a year long review of business practices across Canada’s Big Six banks after media reports last year of inappropriate sales tactics and incentives. No surprise they found evidence of a sales driven financial danger zone for bank customers. See: Canada’s financial watchdog slams’ banks attempts to mitigate sales risks:

“there are insufficient controls in place at the country’s biggest banks to prevent sales of financial products that are misrepresented or unsuitable for consumers, and the banks’ sales-focused culture elevates the risk that employees may flout consumer protection rules.

The FCAC added it is investigating alleged breaches of rules of conduct designed to protect consumers, and which banks are required to follow that may have been identified during its review and will take action where appropriate.

‘Banks are in the business of making money. We know that. But the way they sell financial products and manage employee performance, combined with how they set up their governance frameworks can lead to sales cultures that are not always aligned with consumers’ interests,’  FCAC commissioner Lucie Tedesco said in a statement.”

The question remains how can we summon the public ire and political will enough to separate deposit taking banks from product sales conglomerates once more. Scolding and fines are wholly inadequate, clearly.

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