By Staff | December 18, 2008 | Last updated on December 18, 2008
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The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) has published for comment a set of proposals reforming the rules governing insider transaction reporting.

The proposed National Instrument 55-104 Insider Reporting Requirements and Exemptions would reduce the number of insiders who would be required to report transactions. Only a core group with the greatest access to material undisclosed information would need to file.

The reporting deadline would be cut from 10 days to five, and the issuer would be required to disclose whether any of its insiders failed to file a report.

NI 55-104 would consolidate the main insider reporting requirements and exemptions in a single national instrument, which would cover all provinces except Ontario, where the Ontario Securities Act would continue to govern insider trade reporting.

The proposed materials are available on the websites of various CSA members. The comment period is open for 90 days.

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CI conversion receives unitholder approval

CI Financial Income Trust has received stakeholder consent for the plan to transform itself back into a corporate structure. Proxies representing 68% of outstanding trust units, and 88% of limited partnership units, were submitted, with more than 95% of those proxies voting in favour of the conversion.

“We appreciate the support of CI’s unitholders for this vitally important change,” said Bill Holland, CEO of CI Financial. “As a corporation, CI will be better positioned for growth and for taking advantage of acquisition opportunities. The company’s future will no longer be affected by the uncertainties of the income trust market and the severe limits to growth that have been imposed on trusts.”

A special meeting will be held on Friday, December 19, 2008, to officially vote on the conversion. The transformation will then face court approval, and is expected to take place on January 1, 2009.

CI also announced that it has raised $210 million in a bought deal sale of units to a syndicate co-led by GMP Securities L.P. and TD Securities Inc.

CI plans to use the cash for general corporate purposes, including the enhancement of working capital and the repayment of debt.

The closing of the offering is scheduled for December 30, 2008, pending receipt of all necessary approvals.

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Financial crisis masks long-term demographic risk

The global financial crisis could mask the risk of long-term demographic trends in Australia, according to a report.

Mercer’s Workplace 2012: beyond the Global Financial Crisis report suggests that relief for employers from an ongoing skills shortage and aging population will be short lived.

Using updated modeling based on economic data from February to October, the report states that by 2012, the number of individuals in Australia’s labour force aged 55 and over will increase by 15.4%, while the number of workers aged 25-54 will increase by only 6.3%.

The number of women aged 55 and over in the labour force will increase by 17% compared with a 9% increase in women aged 25-54, while the number of men aged 55 and over will increase by 14% compared with a 4% increase in the number of men aged 25-54.

According to Peter Promnitz, Mercer’s chief executive in Australia, the global financial crisis won’t prevent an ongoing labour and skills shortage, and employers should be planning now for an economic recovery.

“If employers are blinded by the global financial crisis, they risk destroying a viable and productive future workforce,” he says. “If you cut too deep — or in the wrong places — now, you will jeopardize your future success.”

The report also suggests older workers will be critical to success in an economic recovery.

“We acknowledge that attraction and retention of older workers will not be a priority for many employers right now, but the global financial crisis will not stop an aging workforce,” says Promnitz. “Older employees can offer experience and corporate memory often critical to successfully rebuilding a business outside of the economic crisis.”

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GGOF appoints new U.S. subadvisor

Guardian Group of Funds (GGOF) has appointed Harris Investment Management Inc. as portfolio advisor for GGOF American Equity Fund Ltd.

Effective March 18, 2009, Harris will take over from Lazard Asset Management (Canada) Inc.

Harris is a wholly-owned, indirect subsidiary of BMO Bank of Montreal.

(12/18/08) staff


The staff of have been covering news for financial advisors since 1998.