Office of Superintendent of Financial Institutions (“OSFI”)

OSFI is an independent federal government agency that regulates and supervises more than 400 federally regulated financial institutions and 1,200 pension plans to determine whether they are in sound financial condition and meeting their requirements.

Federally regulated financial institutions include all banks in Canada, and all federally incorporated or registered trust and loan companies, insurance companies, cooperative credit associations, fraternal benefit societies and private pension plans.

OSFI’s purview:

Deposit-taking institutions:

  • Banks
  • Co-operatives – associations that are organized and operate on cooperative principles. Co-operatives normally provide services to their members only, but may also cater to non-members as well.
  • Trust & Loan Companies – financial institutions that operate under either provincial or federal legislation and conduct activities similar to those of a bank.

Insurance Industry:

  • Life insurance companies
  • Property & Casualty insurance company

Insurance industry operates somewhat like an oligopoly, with Manulife, Sunlife and Great-West Life accounting for more than 50% of market share.

Pension Industry:

While there are many pension funds operating in Canada, some of the biggest names in the pension industry include: