Feds urged to block RBC-HSBC deal 

By The Canadian Press | November 2, 2023 | Last updated on November 2, 2023
1 min read

The finance committee of the House of Commons has called on the Finance Minister to block RBC’s $13.5-billion takeover of HSBC Canada over concerns it will hurt competition.

The committee says in a report to Parliament that there are already very few financial institutions in the Canadian banking sector, so the removal of a competitor could raise bank fees that are already elevated.

The six committee members from the Conservative, Bloc Quebecois and NDP parties voted in favour of the report, while Liberal members abstained.

The takeover has already been approved by the Competition Bureau but still requires approval from Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland.

RBC spokesman Andrew McGrath said in a statement that the takeover is in the best interest of HSBC Canada’s 700,000 clients, and that the Competition Bureau’s review did not identify Competition Act concerns with the deal.

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre in October called for the deal to be blocked, pointing to the Competition Bureau’s finding that the bank was a rate disrupter on mortgages, so the loss of the bank could leave Canadians paying higher rates.

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