Levis, Quebec-based Desjardins Group reported surplus earnings of $570 million in Q3, unchanged from the same quarter the previous year.
Guy Cormier, Desjardins Group president and chief executive officer, attributed the “satisfactory” third quarter results to a strong performance from the personal and business services sector. This was offset by a weaker wealth management and life and health insurance sector.
Desjardins saw a significant decline in profit from the latter segment in the quarter that ended Sept. 30. Net surplus earnings for wealth management and life and health insurance were $108 million in Q3, down from $174 million a year ago.
“This decline was primarily attributable to a less favourable claims experience on certain life and health insurance products and narrower interest margins compared to the third quarter of 2018,” the release said.
For the first nine months of 2019, net surplus earnings for wealth management and life and health insurance dropped to $430 million from $711 million the previous year, with lower gains on the sale of securities and real estate investments also contributing.
Operating income for the quarter was up 3.6% year over year to $4.39 billion.
Earlier this year, Desjardins Group experienced a widespread privacy breach that impacted 4.2 million individuals, as well as businesses in Quebec and Ontario. The breach involved personal information — including social insurance numbers — but did not include banking information or passwords.
In light of the situation, the banking co-operative said additional measures were put in place to protect the personal and financial information of all its members and clients.
Desjardins said it’s spent $70 million implementing protections for its members so far this year.