Canadian Banks Maintain Expense Guidance Despite High Inflation Expectations

Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of Montreal and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) on Monday maintained their forecasts for growth in expenses this year despite expectations that inflation will remain elevated, Reuters reported. CIBC, Canada's No. 5 bank, said last month it expects mid-single-digit expense growth in fiscal 2022, after reporting a 13% increase in the fourth quarter, the highest in the industry. The major Canadian banks broadly posted expenses that were higher than analysts had expected in the fourth quarter and some expect continued disappointments on that front in the first half of 2022. Surging inflation resulting from supply-chain constraints has roiled economies globally, and the Bank of Canada said last month it expects inflation to stay above target into this year and only fall back toward 2% by the end of 2022. Royal Bank, Canada's top lender, still expects low-single-digit growth in non-interest expenses for fiscal 2022, and can slow down some investment and take out costs if needed, Chief Executive Dave McKay said. Read more.