Canadian banks face earnings pressures, will look for ways to cut costs: analyst AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email TORONTO – Canada’s biggest banks are taking a closer look at ways to reduce their expenses this summer as they prepare for slower earnings growth, according to a new report from Barclays.Analyst John Aiken, who released a broad overview of the country’s banking industry on Thursday, said that cost controls are near the top of the list for the industry as it grapples with tighter revenues.The banks will look at ways to make their technical operations more efficient to save time and money, but if that doesn’t create enough savings, jobs could be in jeopardy, he suggested.“If this environment continues, you may need to see some more dramatic cost-cutting measures put in place,” Aiken said in an interview.“That could ultimately lead to head count reduction, although at this stage in the game it does not look like that’s the first item on the list.”However, Aiken said that some banks are looking at routes such as changing variable compensation structures to defer some payments, rather than simply the more immediate relief of cutting jobs.“Process improvement to create more efficiencies … will take a longer time frame to reap the expected benefits,” he noted.During the second-quarter earnings period, several banks noted that expense management was an area they were giving particular attention.Bank of Montreal (TSX:BMO) chief executive Bill Downe highlighted the bank’s continuing plans to lower costs across its operations as part of a long-term review that examines all of its businesses.Some of those savings will be recognized through the closure of 24 of its U.S. BMO Harris bank branches in the U.S. Midwest, which is expected to trim US$300 million â€” though integration and restructuring costs are expected to be C$600 million over the next few years.National Bank (TSX:NA) and Royal Bank (TSX:RY) were also vocal about their cost management plans.The report said that TD Bank (TSX:TD) is likely to spend more attention on compensation plans that discourage risk taking.“For wholesale banks, (the) first reaction is to cut head count, followed by a cut in compensation,” Aiken wrote in the note.Barclays’ analysis was based on an annual “walking tour” that the banks gave the investment firm, effectively providing a mid-year overview of their operations.Aiken said that every bank participated except for Royal Bank (TSX:RY), due to a scheduling conflict.â€”â€”(TSX:BNS, TSX:CM) by News Staff Posted Jul 12, 2012 6:18 pm MDT
Owen’s tree-mendous effortCredit:Owen Delaney / SWNS.com The father of two, who has been running for 12 years, said: “I started doing them as a bit of fun, really. The idea first came about a couple of years ago when I did something similar for an online competition.”I didn’t have any plan to carry it on after the first one, but my friends seemed to like it so did the Santa one the next day, then I thought why not try and come up with something different every day up until Christmas. He first started making the images on the app when he realised the Diana Fountain in Bushy Park, near his home in Teddington, south west London, would make a good nose for Rudolph the reindeer.Mr Delaney, 40, has spent hours planning each run, some of which have taken hours to devise in the lead-up to Christmas. Owen’s Santa shapeCredit:SWNS.com “I used to draw a lot of cartoons when I was younger, and sometimes made hand drawn Christmas cards for people.”I guess this is a similar theme, but I never imagined being able to use the park as a canvas. Technology has opened some fun new ways to be creative.”Mr Delaney has shared his pictures online, and received positive feedback from thousands of people.He said: “I’ve been completely blown away by the attention it’s all received. It’s great though, everyone seems to be enjoying it and it’s bringing lots of smiles, and lovely comments from people.”That’s what’s motivating me to keep going. We could all do with something simple and happy this year I think.”The longest run was the 7.1 mile Santa Claus, while his shorted and shortest picture turned out to be the 1.2 mile bauble.He added: “I like that it’s making people smile. My kids seem quite confused by it all though.”I show them the pictures after I’ve done a run, and they just give me a funny look like I’ve lost the plot. Kids are very astute.” A keen jogger has used an activity-tracking app to create festive art while keeping fit by running in Christmas shapes.Owen Delaney has mapped out Father Christmas, a snowflake and a Christmas tree using running app Strava, which maps out shareable routes using GPS technology. Owen Delaney with son TomCredit:Owen Delaney / SWNS.com Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.