The Bank of Nova Scotia (NYSE:BNS) Q4 2017 Earnings Conference Call - Preliminary Transcript

Nov 28, 2017 • 08:00 am ET

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The Bank of Nova Scotia (NYSE:BNS) Q4 2017 Earnings Conference Call - Preliminary Transcript

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Presentation
Operator
Adam Borgatti

Good morning, everyone and welcome to Scotiabank's 2017 Fourth Quarter Results Presentation. My name is Adam Borgatti, Vice President of Investor Relations. Presenting to you this morning is Brian Porter, Scotiabank's President and Chief Executive Officer; Sean McGuckin, our Chief Financial Officer; and Daniel Moore, our Chief Risk Officer. Following our comments, we will be glad to take your questions.

Also in the room with us to take questions are Scotiabank's business line group heads, James O'Sullivan from Canadian Banking and Nacho Deschamps from International Banking and Dieter Jentsch from Global Banking and Markets.

Before we start and on behalf of those speaking today, I will refer you to Slide 2 of our presentation, which contains Scotiabank's caution regarding forward-looking statements.

With that, I will now turn the call over to Brian Porter.

Executive
Brian Porter

Thank you, Adam and good morning everyone. We are very pleased with the bank's results in 2017. Our team of 89,000 Scotiabankers has performed well to deliver these results. Notwithstanding several catastrophic events that took place across our footprint, we are thankful that all our affected colleagues are safe and we are continuing to support our customers. Consistent with our strategic agenda, our 24 million customers remain our core focus. Throughout the year, we implemented a number of initiatives that put our customers at the center of everything we do, including a digital customer experience management system that provides us with rich feedback from our customers.

We continue to make good progress on our digital transformation. A good example is our digital factory network which became fully operational in Canada in the Pacific Alliance in 2017. The network is integrated and we leverage our international scale and diversity of talent across our footprint. It is also a driver of internal innovation and our digital targets. Our increased attention to business mix has yielded good results on both sides of the balance sheet. Our focus on deposits in our retail, commercial and corporate segments has reduced our wholesale funding ratio by approximately 20%. This has improved our funding profile and further strengthened our financial position.

In Q2 of last year, we announced our structural cost transformation program to significantly transform the bank's cost structure. For fiscal 2017, the first full year of this SCT program, I am pleased to report the bank generated savings of $500 million well ahead of our target of $350 million for the year. Our SCT program helps to make the bank more productive and create capacity for new investments. Over the last few years, we have invested significantly in our leadership teams. We have strengthened the bank's leadership capabilities with an infusion of new leaders from other businesses, industries and geographies. These new Scotiabankers have brought depth and the diversity of experience that meaningfully improves our bank's strength and effectiveness. Today, our teams are performance oriented than ever before.

I will now shift and comment on our financial performance for the year. In 2017, the bank delivered strong results, which were in line with