‘Big Five’ Canadian banks’ provisions doubled in pandemic year

Canada’s top lenders set aside a collective C$21.6 billion ($17 billion) to cover loan losses over the 12 months to end-January, more than double the amount for the prior year. However, provisions taken out of fiscal first-quarter income were significantly lower than over the three months to end-October, which implies the firms have covered the majority of their projected Covid-related impairments.

Provisions booked by BMO, CIBC, RBC, Scotiabank and TD Bank over the year were up 113% on their

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