Insights: Canadian Banks

Canadian Banks: Why U.S. Mid-Caps are Easier to Acquire (than 10 Years Ago)

In the Hamilton Capital Global Bank ETF (HBG; TSX), we generally seek to hold 50% North American banks, with an emphasis on the ~200 publicly traded U.S. mid-cap banks (those firms with <$100 bln in assets). As of the time of writing, HBG had exposure to 23 U.S. banks representing 43% of the ETF’s net asset value.

WFC: A Canadian Bank Counterfactual as it Enters Year #4 of No Growth

We generally have minimal exposure to the global mega-cap banks primarily because of their very low EPS growth, higher regulatory risk, and relative to their mid-cap peers, materially lower interest rate sensitivity. In this Insight, we explain why we believe “slow growth” WFC basically represents a Canadian bank counterfactual.

Canadian Banks: Revisiting our “End of an Era” Thesis (Five Years Later)

In May 2011, we wrote an essay entitled “The Canadian Banks – The End of an Era”. In this essay – which was excerpted in the Globe and Mail – we explained why the Canadian banks were entering a period in which their two-decade period of double digit EPS/dividend growth was ending. Specifically, we identified three reasons supporting this thesis: (i) the drivers of the sector’s…

Canadian Banks: Housing Correction Concerns Increasing Regulatory Risk

As we have highlighted in numerous Hamilton Capital Insights, regulatory risk is a key risk in global banking, and one we attempt to minimize our exposure. It is most intense for the mega-banks in the U.S. and Europe, particularly those with global investment banking operations (i.e., C, BAC, JPM, CSGN.VX, UBS.VX, DBK.GY, BARC.LN). Although post-crisis, those global banks have been the epicentre of regulatory risk, the recent…

Canadian Banks: More Risky vs. Less Risky Loans in One Chart

At present, the Canadian banks have outstanding asset quality. Although provisions rose notably for the second consecutive quarter in Q2, provision and gross impaired loan ratios remain below long-term averages. With Q3 reporting beginning August 23rd, we believe the market will be focused on two areas of potential deterioration: (i) energy loans (which have been driving higher loan losses), and (ii) Alberta consumer, particularly uninsured.

Why CIBC Needs a Visible Capital Allocation Strategy

Since the end of the credit crisis (i.e., 2009), CIBC has generated core cash EPS growth above its Canadian banking peers as well as a (much) higher ROE. Despite exceeding its peers over the past four years on these important growth/profitability metrics, CIBC continues to trade at a notable P/E discount. So, in light of this post-crisis performance, and a (perceived) below-average risk profile, why does…

The Canadian Banks – The End of an Era (Globe and Mail)

On May 26th, the Globe and Mail featured our piece entitled, “The Canadian Banks – The End of an Era”. This article is based on material researched for our investor luncheons last fall by the same name. This “Special Comment” expands on the contents of the article with additional commentary for the benefit of our investors. Click to Download»

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