The Globe and Mail reports in its Monday edition that last May, Bank of Nova Scotia announced it would buy MD Physician Services for $2.6-billion. The Globe's Clare O'Hara and Tim Kiladze write that it was a jaw-dropping price and, for many doctors, the deal was an unexpected development. For decades, MD, boasting $49-billion in client assets, made its independence from major financial institutions a key selling point. Yet, here it was, selling out to a Big Six bank.
An on-line forum called Physician Financial Independence aims to simplify personal finance and investments for doctors. Its founder, Dr. Paul Healey, says: "MD is no longer viewed as an advocate for physicians. The most common post today in our group of 9,500 members is, 'How do I move my money from MD Management?'"
Scotiabank says it has lost minimal assets from MD since the deal. Even so, any sign of a backlash is potentially troublesome for the bank, which paid a rich price for MD during a $7-billion acquisition spree in fiscal 2018. The bank says the price tag is justified; owning MD checks some important boxes for Scotiabank, mainly a trove of high-net-worth clients. Wealthy clients not only invest more, they also tend to borrow more.
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