Bank of Montreal
The Bank of Montreal, (French: Banque de Montréal) doing business as BMO Financial Group, is a Canadian multinational investment bank and financial services company headquartered in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. One of the Big Five banks in Canada, it is the fourth-largest bank in Canada by market capitalization and assets, as well as one of the ten largest banks in North America. It is commonly known by its acronym BMO (pronounced //), which is also its stock symbol on both the Toronto Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange.
|BMO Financial Group|
BMO Bank of Montreal
|Traded as||TSX: BMO|
S&P/TSX 60 component
|Founded||1817Montreal, Lower Canadain|
|Headquarters||Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|William A. Downe|
(Retired Chief Executive Officer, BMO Financial Group)
(Chairman, BMO Financial Group)
Thomas E. Flynn
(CFO, BMO Financial Group)
(CEO, BMO Harris Bank)
Darryl White (CEO BMO Financial Group)
|Revenue||CAD$21.787 billion (2017)|
|CAD$4.150 billion (2017)|
|Total assets||CAD$550.446 billion (2017)|
Number of employees
|45,200 (FTE, 2017)|
|Subsidiaries||BMO Capital Markets|
BMO Harris Bank
BMO Nesbitt Burns
Capital Markets: bmocm
On June 23, 1817, John Richardson and eight merchants signed the Articles of Association to establish the Bank of Montreal in a rented house in Montreal, Quebec. The bank officially began conducting business on November 3, 1817, making it Canada's oldest bank. BMO's Institution Number (or bank number) is 001. In Canada, the bank operates as BMO Bank of Montreal and has more than 900 branches, serving over seven million customers. The company also has substantial operations in the Chicago area and elsewhere in the United States, where it operates as BMO Harris Bank. BMO Capital Markets is BMO's investment and corporate banking division, while the wealth management division is branded as BMO Nesbitt Burns. The company is ranked at number 131 on the Forbes Global 2000 list.
The company has not missed a dividend payment since 1829, paying dividends consistently through major world crises such as World War I, the Great Depression, World War II, and the 2008 financial crisis; this makes the Bank of Montreal's dividend payment history one of the longest in the world.
The Bank of Montreal was founded in 1817 as the first bank in Canada. The Bank of Montreal established branches in Newfoundland on January 31, 1895, following the collapse of the Newfoundland Commercial Bank and Union Bank of Newfoundland on December 10, 1894.
In 1925, Bank of Montreal merged with the Molson Bank. BMO's operational head office moved to First Canadian Place on Bay Street in Toronto in 1977, while its legal headquarters remains at the historic Montreal structure it has occupied since 1847.
Bank of Montreal, like the other Canadian chartered banks, issued its own paper money from 1817 until 1942. Though the last notes were issued during that year, they may have circulated for some time after. In 1944, the Bank of Canada (est. 1934) became the sole issuer of currency in Canada, and notes from private banks were withdrawn.
Today, the Bank of Montreal commonly goes by the brand name BMO. It is a major international bank with subsidiaries operating in the United States and other countries around the world.
BMO and Simplii Financial (a subsidiary of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce) were the targets of hackers in May 2018, who claimed to have compromised the systems of both banks and stolen information on a combined 90,000 customers (50,000 from BMO). An email sent from a Russian address and attributed to the hackers demanded a ransom of US$1 million from each company paid via Ripple by 11:59 pm on May 28, 2018 or the information would be released on "fraud forum [sic] and fraud community [sic]."
A number of buildings in which Bank of Montreal operates branches are designated by various levels of government as being of historic importance. These include:
- The Bank of Montreal, 4896 Delta Street, Delta, British Columbia (1919)
- The Bank of Montreal, 511 Columbia Street, New Westminster, British Columbia (1947–1948)
- The Bank of Montreal, 322 Curling Street, Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador (1915)
- The Bank of Montreal, 426 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba (1927)
- The "Old Bank of Montreal", 100 Victoria Street East, also known as the "Heritage Court", Amherst, Nova Scotia (1906)
- The Bank of Montreal, 1 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario (1928)
- The Bank of Montreal, 144 Wellington Street, Ottawa, Ontario built by Ernest Barott of Barott and Blackader, architects, of Montreal
- The Bank of Montreal, 3 King Street, Waterloo, Ontario formerly known as the Molson's Bank, by architect Andrew Taylor (1914)
A number of branches were designed by Andrew Taylor including:
- The Bank of Montreal in West End, Ste. Catherine Street West at Mansfield Street, Montreal (1889)
- The Bank of Montreal in Notre Dame Street West Seigneurs Street, Montreal (1894)
- The Bank of Montreal in Point St. Charles Branch, Wellington Street at Magdalen Street, Montreal (1901)
- The Bank of Montreal, St. Catherine Street West at Papineau Street, Montreal (1904)
- The Bank of Montreal, Perth, Ontario (1884)
- The Bank of Montreal, Calgary, Alberta, Stephen Avenue at Scarth Street [now 1 Street SW] (1888)
- Manager's residence for the Bank of Montreal, Quebec City, Quebec, Grande Allee (1904)
- The Bank of Montreal in Sydney, Nova Scotia; designated by The Cape Breton Regional Municipality as a registered heritage property in 2008, (1901)
Taylor also designed a three-storey structure for the Bank of Montreal on Saint Jacques Street in Montreal in 1818. The building was modelled after a Georgian townhouse with a small portico of Corinthian columns supporting a classical pediment and remains the bank's legal headquarters. The Bank of Montreal's operational head office is located at First Canadian Place in Toronto, designed by Edward Durrell Stone.
Hockey Hall of Fame buildingEdit
During its history, Bank of Montreal has merged with or acquired several other Canadian banks:
- Commercial Bank of Canada (1868) of Kingston, Ontario – acquired through Merchants Bank
- Exchange Bank of Yarmouth (1903)
- People's Bank of Halifax (1905)
- People's Bank of New Brunswick (1907)
- Bank of British North America (1918)
- Merchants Bank of Canada (1922), as well as several investment banking firms.
- Molson Bank (1925)
- Nesbitt, Thomson and Company - stock brokers (1987)
- Standard Chartered Bank of Canada 2 retail branches (1990s)
- Royal Bank of Canada (2000) – Merged merchant credit/debit card acquiring business with BMO Bank of Montreal's to form Moneris Solutions
- Banco Comercial Português (BCP) Canadian operations (2006)
The following merchants signed the Articles of Association for the creation of the "Montreal Bank" on June 23, 1817:
- Robert Armour (1781–1857) businessman, militia officer, and office holder
- John C. Bush (? – 1859)
- Austin Cuvillier (1779–1849)
- George Garden (c.1772–1828), director from 1817 to 1826 and vice-president from 1818 to 1822.
- Horatio Gates (1777–1834), merchant and banker, President of BMO 1832–1834
- James Leslie (1786–1873); bank director
- George Moffatt (1787–1865); bank director
- John Richardson (c. 1754 – 1831)
- Thomas A. Turner (1775 ? – 1834)
- John Gray (1817 to 1820); co-founder and first President
- Samuel Gerrard (1820 to 1826)
- Horatio Gates (1826); co-founder and President
- John Molson (1826 to 1834)
- Peter McGill (1834 to 1860)
- Thomas Brown Anderson (1860 to 1869)
- Edwin Henry King (1869 to 1873)
- David Torrance (1873 to 1876)
- George Stephen (1876 to 1881)
- C. F. Smithers (1881 to 1887)
- Donald Smith (1887 to 1905)
- George Alexander Drummond (1905 to 1910)
- Richard B. Angus (1910 to 1913)
- Sir Vincent Meredith (1913 to 1927)
- Sir Charles Blair Gordon (1927 to 1939)
- Huntly Redpath Drummond (1939 to 1942)
- George Wilbur Spinney (1942 to 1948)
- Bertie Charles Gardner (1948 to 1952)
- Gordon Ball (1952 to 1959)
- G. Arnold Hart, president from 1959 to 1967 and CEO from 1959 to 1974
- Fred McNeil, CEO from 1975 to 1979
- William D. Mulholland, CEO from 1979 to 1989
- William E. Bradford, President 1981-1983
- Matthew W. Barrett President from 1987 to 1990 and CEO from 1990–1999
- F. Anthony Comper CEO from 1999 to 2007
- Bill Downe (from March 1, 2007 to October 31, 2017)
President was the highest-ranking position at the bank from its founding until the middle of the twentieth century, however this was superseded by chief executive officer in 1959, beginning with G. Arnold Hart. Several of his successors as President were CEO as well, however Matthew W. Barrett was the first top executive not to be styled president.
Chief Executive OfficerEdit
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Since the middle of the twentieth century, the senior officer of Bank of Montreal has been styled President and chief executive officer beginning with G. Arnold Hart. That officer often also held the title chairman of the board, until 2003 when a non-executive chairman was appointed.
The title of the second-ranking executive has changed several times and has often been left vacant. As deputy to Matthew Barrett, F. Anthony Comper was President and chief operating officer from 1990 to 1999, after which he became chairman and CEO while retaining the title of President. During most of Anthony Comper's tenure as CEO, while there was no official "number two" executive, the CEO of BMO Capital Markets (the investment banking division) was largely considered the second-most powerful officer. Bill Downe ascended from CEO of BMO Capital to chief operating officer of the BMO group, but held the title only for one-year until he succeeded Comper as President and CEO in 2007.
BMO is divided into three "client groups" which serve different markets. Each of the client groups operates under multiple brand names.
- Personal and Commercial Client Group (retail banking), including
- Investment Banking Group (known as BMO Capital Markets)
- Private Client Group (wealth management), including
- BMO Nesbitt Burns (full service investing in Canada)
- BMO InvestorLine (self-service investing in Canada)
- BMO Harris Investor Services (advisory services in the United States)
- BMO Private Banking (private banking in Canada and the United States) including Harris myCFO and Cedar Street Advisors (both affiliates of BMO Harris Bank) In 2014–2015 BMO rebranded BMO Harris Private Bank as BMO Private Bank.
Current members of the board of directors of BMO are: Robert Astley, David R. Beatty, Robert Chevrier, George Cope, Bill Downe, Christine A. Edwards, Ronald Farmer, David A. Galloway, Harold Kvisle, Eva L. Kwok, Bruce H. Mitchell, Philip Orsino, Martha C. Piper, Robert Prichard, Jeremy Reitman, Guylaine Saucier, Don M. Wilson III, and Nancy Southern.
BMO's official legal corporate head office is in Montreal, located on Saint Jacques Street. The chairman, President and some senior division executives work in the Toronto offices at First Canadian Place.
From at least 2007 through 2011, BMO was a sponsor for the Toronto Maple Leafs. It has been a sponsor of the Toronto FC of Major League Soccer since 2007 and of its home arena named BMO Field at Exhibition Place. and the Toronto Raptors. In 2010, BMO extended its agreement with the Toronto FC through the 2016 season.
In 2005, BMO Bank of Montreal became the title sponsor for the annual May marathon race staged by the Vancouver International Marathon Society. The current name is "BMO Bank of Montreal Vancouver Marathon".
Since 1997, Bank of Montreal has been a major sponsor of Skate Canada, and is the title sponsor of the BMO Financial Group Canadian Championships, BMO Financial Group Skate Canada Junior Nationals, BMO Financial Group Skate Canada Challenges, BMO Financial Group Skate Canada Sectionals, and BMO Financial Group Skate Canada Synchronized Championships. It is also the presenting sponsor of the CanSkate Learn-to-Skate Program.
On July 23, 2008, BMO announced it signed a one-race deal with IndyCar team Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing to appear on the No. 06 car of Graham Rahal in the first-ever IRL-sanctioned Canadian IndyCar race at Edmonton.
Mergers and acquisitions historyEdit
Purchase of Harris Bankcorp (1984)Edit
In 1984, the bank greatly expanded its operations in the United States through the purchase of Chicago's Harris Bank. Harris, rebranded BMO Harris Bank in 2011, has continued to expand additional acquisitions.
Proposed merger with RBC (1998)Edit
In 1998, Bank of Montreal shocked the Canadian financial community and public by announcing plans to merge with RBC. Government regulators later blocked the proposed merger, along with a similar proposal by the Toronto-Dominion Bank to merge with the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. In December 2000, the banks were successful in merging their credit and debit card processing services to form Moneris Solutions.
Purchase of BCPBank Canada (2006)Edit
Purchase of GKST Inc (2008)Edit
BMO bought Griffin, Kubik, Stephans, and Thompson (GKST) in 2008, a Chicago-based firm that specializes in municipal bonds, U.S. Treasury and agency debt, and mortgage-backed securities with approximately 100 employees handling sales, trading, research, public finance and underwriting.
Purchase of AIG Life Insurance Company of Canada (2009)Edit
In 2009, BMO purchased AIG's Canadian life insurance business, AIG Life Insurance Company of Canada, for approximately $330 million CAD. The transaction, including 400,000 customers and 300 employees, made BMO the second-biggest life insurer among Canadian banks. The new component was renamed BMO Life Assurance Company.
Purchase of Diners Club International Franchise (2009)Edit
In November 2009, Bank of Montreal announced the purchase of Diners Club International's North American franchise from Citibank. The transaction gave BMO exclusive rights to issue Diners cards in the U.S. and Canada. The deal closed in December 2009.
Purchase of Marshall and Ilsley Corporation (2010)Edit
In December 2010, BMO announced the purchase of Milwaukee-based Marshall & Ilsley Corporation, which operated as M&I Bank. Prior to acquisition, M&I was Wisconsin's largest and oldest bank, with branches in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, Kansas, Arizona and the Indianapolis market. When the transaction completed, M&I Bank, along with current Harris Bank branches were rebranded BMO Harris Bank.
Purchase of Lloyd George (2011)Edit
In January 2011, BMO announced the purchase of Hong Kong-based Lloyd George Management. Lloyd George has offices in Hong Kong, London (UK), Singapore, Mumbai and Florida and manages a portfolio of approximately US$6 billion.
Purchase of GE Capital's transportation-finance business (2015)Edit
In September 2015, BMO agreed to acquire General Electric Co. subsidiary GE Capital's transportation-finance unit. The business acquired has USD $8.7-billion (CAD $11.5-billion) of assets, 600 employees and 15 offices in the U.S. and Canada. Exact terms were not disclosed but the final price would be based on the value of the assets at closing plus a premium according to the parties.
Purchase of Greene Holcomb Fisher (2016)Edit
In June 2016, BMO agreed to acquire Greene Holcomb Fisher, a Minneapolis investment bank. Greene Holcomb Fisher also has offices in Seattle and Atlanta. The terms of the acquisition were not released.
Credit agency ratingsEdit
Rating agency Moody's Investors Service began to review the long-term ratings of the Bank of Montreal and other Canadian banks because of concerns about consumer debt levels, housing prices, and a sizable exposure to capital markets in October 2012. In January 2013, the service announced downgrades for Bank of Montreal and five others.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bank of Montreal.|
BMO is a member of the Canadian Bankers Association (CBA) and registered member with the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC), a federal agency insuring deposits at all of Canada's chartered banks. It is also a member of:
- Air Miles
- ATM Industry Association (ATMIA)
- Cirrus for MasterCard card users
- Diners Club North America
- MasterCard International
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The big banks have an astonishingly long record of consistently paying dividends. Bank of Montreal has been distributing them non-stop since 1829 - almost 180 years, the longest unbroken record of any Canadian company. Bank of Nova Scotia's streak goes back to 1833, TD's to 1857, CIBC's to 1868 and Royal's to 1870.
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- Denison, Merrill, 1893–1975. Canada's first bank : a history of the Bank of Montreal. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, c1966. 2 v. : ill., maps, ports., (some folded, some col). ; 25 cm.
- Nolin-Raynauld, Michelle, 1926–. The Bank of Montreal building on Place d'Armes, 1845–1901 / Michelle Nolin-Raynauld ; foreword by Jean Bélisle ; translated by Judith Berman. Montreal : Varia Press, c1999. 143 p. : facsm., ill., plans ; 23 cm. Originally presented as the author's thesis (master—Université de Montréal), 1984, under the title: L'architecture de la Banque de Montréal à la Place d'Armes. Translation of: L'édifice de la Banque de Montréal à la Place d'Armes, 1845–1901. ISBN 2-922245-12-8
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