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November 9, 2021

FSRA ENDORSES AUTO FEATURES

The Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA) encourages plan administrators to evaluate the use of automatic features within the context of their defined contribution pension plans. It has released an interpretation guidance on automatic features in defined contribution pension plans. The guidance affirms that the Pension Benefits Act and its regulations do not prohibit the use of automatic features. Features including auto-enrollment, auto-escalation, and default funds may enhance retirement outcomes for plan members. The guidance is at Automatic Features In DC Plans

November 9, 2021

IMPROVED EXPERIENCE BECOMES PRIORITY

While managing group health benefits costs, digitizing benefits delivery, and data insights are key areas of focus for plan sponsors and advisors, another top priority going forward is improving plan member experience, says a Telus Health ‘Benefits Hub.’ From mental wellness to independent living for seniors, new technologies are supporting all of these health benefits management goals. It identifies some trends sponsors should be aware of. With Canadians struggling with mental health, group health benefits design should focus on improving access to care – both mental and physical – so employees and their families can get the support they need. One tool that is proving effective is mobile apps. Accessible from any device they provide access at the time and place that works best for plan members. As well, in the last year, more so than ever before, Canadians have been embracing virtual healthcare and wellness, including online fitness classes and consultations with practitioners using mobile apps. The same expectations also apply to how plan members manage their prescription medications. Whether it’s transferring an existing prescription or ordering refills, benefits program managers are taking note of the ways in which virtual pharmacies can improve plan member experiences, while helping to reduce dispensing fees and patient co-pays.

November 9, 2021

CIBC MELLON EXPANDS IN QUEBEC

CIBC Mellon is expanding in Quebec to support growing regional client needs, to better access local talent, and to meet its clients’ rising appetite for French language investment operations support. The Quebec expansion follows the company’s expansions in Mississauga, ON, in 2016 and Winnipeg, MB, in 2019. Michael Graham will lead the provincial growth strategy. Its bilingual relationship management coverage team includes Millia DeQuartel and Marie-France Blais as relationship executives and Mariem Zitoun as service director.

November 9, 2021

CDPQ INVESTS IN SAMA

The Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) is investing in Sama, an AI (artificial intelligence) training data platform providing high-quality data to Fortune 2000 companies to power their AI applications. The AI data solutions landscape is highly fragmented, with many products built in silos, each solving one piece of the puzzle for developers. Sama will be using its new funding to build the first end-to-end AI platform that enables teams to manage the complete AI lifecycle, resulting in faster development and eliminating data transfer between products.

November 9, 2021

LAROUCHE JOINS SUN LIFE

Alexandre Larouche (FSA, FCIA, MBA) is joining Sun Life Financial as managing director, client relationship, with the defined benefit solutions team. He previously was with Willis Towers Watson where he was a retirement consultant.

November 9, 2021

SUMMIT OFFERS ETF INSIGHTS

The ‘3rd Annual Canada ETFGI Global ETFs Insights Summit’ is designed to facilitate a substantive and in-depth discussion on the impact that ETFs have on markets and market structure and the regulatory, trading, and technological developments impacting the use of ETFs. It takes place December 1 and 2. Information is at https://etfgi.com/events/2021/12/3rd-annual-etfgi-global-etfs-insights-summit-canada