The financial services sector would be a vital component of the Canadian economy if measured according to its output and employment alone. It is more than that, however, because the efficiency and effectiveness of the financial sector is critical to economy-wide performance. The financial sector constitutes the infrastructure of commerce; financial intermediation is also the mechanism that facilitates risk-sharing and risk mitigation, as well as regional and intertemporal exchange of financial assets and obligations. These factors warrant special attention to the policy influences on the financial sector’s performance.
The C.D. Howe Institute’s Financial Services Research Initiative is a multi-year program organized by the Institute to report and advise on financial sector policy. Its unique work program addresses the economic environment within which financial intermediation takes place, the regulatory environment, and the future of financial intermediation. The Initiative is informed by regular meetings of experts in the sector, policymakers and supporters engaged in the financial services sector, including financial intermediaries, securities market participants and their regulators, among others. The Initiative is chaired by Nicholas Le Pan, former Superintendent of Financial Institutions for Canada. The Initiative publishes research by prominent scholars from academia, associations, and the private and public sectors.