The Financial Post reports in its Wednesday edition that the chief executive officer of Bank of Nova Scotia suggested Tuesday that Canadians are borrowing within their means and paying down their debts, despite what the naysayers predicting calamity for the housing and banking sectors may think.
The Post's Geoff Zochodne quotes Brian Porter as saying: "U.S. hedge funds from time to time have appeared in this country over the last 10 years, with the same hypothesis of shorting Canadian banks, and it hasn't worked very well for them. There are always going to be those that take an opposing view, and we'll prove them wrong in the long term."
Mr. Porter was responding to a question by a shareholder at Scotia's annual meeting Tuesday in Toronto. He also said Scotiabank is stress-testing its $216-billion Canadian residential mortgage portfolio, which he said was 42-per-cent insured against default and with a loan-to-value ratio on the balance of around 54 per cent.
"So we believe there's a lot of buffer in there for any significant downturn," he said, adding, "I think taking one data point is not a very good way to make an investment decision." Mr. Porter also said, "We're very comfortable with our capital levels."
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