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BMO Stress Testing Loans at $25 a Barrel Oil

18/01/2016


MNP's TAKE: Debt capital providers to oilfield services companies have been flexible in trying to find ways to work with their clients to get their money back and create cash flow. But increasingly,as oil prices continue to fall, those without a plan or strategy have been sent to special credit or had their loans called. After paring your company down as much as possible while still being able to operate, what is left to do? A consultation with financial and tax specialists could offer new insight into your options, minimize your tax exposure and get the most from your assets. 

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BY ALEXANDRA POSADZKI FROM THE CANADIAN PRESS

TORONTO - Recent declines in the price of crude are spurring Canadian banks to take a closer look at their loan books, with Bank of Montreal stress-testing its oil and gas sector portfolio to see how it would perform at $25 a barrel oil.

Bank of Montreal chief executive Bill Downe says the bank is also stress testing its broader loan portfolios — which includes consumer mortgages, credit cards and auto loans — for an average of $35 a barrel over the course of the year.

For 2017 the bank is using $30 a barrel oil for its stress tests, and for 2018 it's considering the potential effects of a $40 a barrel scenario.

Downe made his comments during the Canadian Bank CEO Conference in Toronto as crude oil futures were trading at about US$32 a barrel.

Meanwhile, Royal Bank CEO Dave McKay said he expects oil to start moving back towards the $50 a barrel range — and maybe slightly above — over the next 18 months.

"It's a little softer than anybody predicted right now," McKay said.

So far, however, McKay says Canada's economic woes have been contained within oil-producing provinces, particularly Alberta, while other regions are being helped by a decline in the dollar's value.

"You're seeing that weaker Canadian dollar drive great strength in B.C. ... You're seeing great strength in Toronto."

— Follow @alexposadzki on Twitter.

This article was written by Alexandra Posadzki and The Canadian Press from The Canadian Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.