How “dull” Canada outshined the world

Can our conservative banking system be a model for the world?

In an exhaustive report on Canada’s banking system by the Financial Times, one sentence stands out: “Canada is the only G7 country to survive the financial crisis without a state bail-out for its financial sector.” Chrystia Freeland talked to everyone who is anyone in Ottawa, Bay Street and beyond to find out why the True North proved so resilient while banks elsewhere required billions and billions in handouts. Canada’s “culturally distinct approach to banking” was her main finding. In the end the reason wasn’t the “play nice” stereotype but rather something even more fundamental to Canada’s system: a belief in order and good government and above all, rules. Freeland quotes a senior official in Ottawa who said, “[Canadian bankers] are boring, but in a good way. They are more interested in balance sheets than in high society. They don’t go to the opera.”

Financial Times