Feds to consider expanded services from banks, fintechs

Banks and other financial firms returned more than $10 million to consumers last year, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) announced on Friday.

The FCAC’s efforts led to financial institutions reimbursing $10.5 million to 1.2 million consumers to make up for a variety of issues, such as inaccurate fee disclosure and incorrect account charges or rate calculations, according to the federal agency’s annual report for the fiscal year ended March 31, which was published on Friday.

Additionally, the FCAC issued three decisions and imposed two administrative monetary penalties as part of its supervisory work, the report says. During the year, the agency imposed a total of $460,000 in monetary penalties, which is up from zero in the previous year.

It also developed a new supervision framework designed to help prevent breaches of market conduct requirements, and launched an industry review of bank sales practices.

In addition, the FCAC reviewed best practices in financial consumer protection. “This will inform new proposals to improve protection for financial consumers,” the agency says in its announcement.

The FCAC’s total expenses for the year were $17.6 million, according to the report. Most of that, $13.6 million worth, was recovered from the financial entities the agency ioversees. The federal government funded the remaining $4 million in costs for the FCAC’s various financial literacy efforts.

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