Today, leading corporations understand that they must balance the needs of all their stakeholders, not just their shareholders. This concept is now known worldwide as “corporate responsibility” or “sustainability.”

We believe there is such a strong link connecting our stakeholders – our clients, employees, shareholders, communities and suppliers – that to ignore one is to imperil them all. We believe this balance is not just possible, it is imperative for our future success.

We define corporate responsibility as operating with integrity at all times, sustaining our company’s long-term viability while contributing to the present and future well-being of all of our stakeholders.

In doing so, we strive to take active responsibility for the daily choices that our company faces: how should we best structure and govern our company? How should we best serve our clients, in terms of ethics, privacy and service? How should we attract the best talent and motivate our employees? How does our company interact with the communities in which we do business? What impact does our business have on the natural environment? Where can we mitigate or tolerate risk in our supply chain? How can we grow our company in a sustainable way?

We believe that companies who strive to balance the needs of all their stakeholders will outperform their competitors and provide the best return to investors. In fact, we have a long history of corporate responsibility of which we are justifiably proud.




Business integrity
We have implemented a wide range of policies and practices to ensure we operate with integrity. Some of these represent sound “first principles” for any business, such as our attention to governance, privacy, diversity and ensuring we remain an employer of choice. Others are specific to our role as a financial institution, such as how we manage risk and provide basic banking services.

Economic prosperity
We make an economic impact by creating employment and a well-trained workforce, paying our fair share of taxes, and purchasing goods and services responsibly. As a financial services company, we also contribute to economic prosperity by providing access to credit for small business, supporting community economic development initiatives, and supporting innovation and entrepreneurship.




Environmental sustainability
We believe that sustained economic growth and a healthy environment are inextricably linked.We take a leading industry role in supporting and advocating sustainable business practices in terms of providing financial services, especially credit, as well as minimizing our environmental footprint in our own facilities and operations.

Community engagement
We believe in building prosperity by supporting a broad range of causes. In 2005, we contributed more than $65 million to community causes worldwide, through donations of more than $40.6 million, and an additional $25 million in the support and sponsorship of community events and national organizations. Our employees and pensioners also make an enormous contribution as volunteers, sharing their financial and business knowledge, time and enthusiasm with thousands of community groups.

Our approach to non-financial reporting
For more than 500 years, the traditional method of reporting financial results has been the “single bottom line” approach, which takes into account a company’s assets and liabilities, with the shareholder as the company’s main focus.

But since the 1990s, there has been an emerging recognition that there are “hidden” liabilities and assets on a company’s balance sheet. Or, to put it another way, shareholders are recognizing that there is more to a company than meets the eye in its quarterly financials.

Increasingly, companies are being asked by investors, analysts and clients to report on their environmental and social performance. This non-financial or sustainability reporting is an emerging discipline, with a great deal of debate among various stakeholders about which performance indicators are the most relevant.

As such, we have not formally adopted a single approach to non-financial reporting; rather, we pay attention to a number of guidelines, frameworks and best practices, and regularly consult with experts to help us understand emerging trends. We have committed to taking a leadership role in helping develop non-financial reporting standards through our work with the Global Reporting Initiative.

Our non-financial reporting can be found in:

•  Our Annual Report and Proxy Statements, which cover our corporate profile, highlights of our financial performance, as well as our approach to risk management, corporate governance and disclosure of executive compensation.
•  Our annual Corporate Responsibility Report, which gives a high-level overview of our social and environmental performance relative to clients, employees, communities and the economy. It includes a description of our business practices, as well as our approach to providing financial services. In Canada, this publication includes our Public Accountability Statement, outlining our contribution to society and the economy, as required by Canadian law.
•  Our online Sustainability Report (on, which provides the most detailed information on sustainability performance indicators that have been deemed significant by researchers and analysts, and is organized to align with the Sustainability Reporting Guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative. This online report is updated on an ongoing basis, ensuring our corporate responsibility efforts are as transparent as possible while still respecting the privacy of our clients and preserving proprietary marketing information.
•  A number of our sites on provide ongoing detail about topics that fall under the corporate responsibility umbrella, including Governance, Human Resources (Careers), Environment, Purchasing, Donations and Sponsorships. For a full overview of our approach to corporate responsibility, see


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