CEO Newsletter – December 2020

Year in Review 

Without a doubt, this year has presented many challenges. The global pandemic has had significant impacts on the economy, on unemployment and most importantly on our health, both physical and mental wellbeing. To help reduce the impact on the economy, the Canadian government has provided fiscal stimulus through several emergency relief programs for individuals and small businesses. In addition, the Bank of Canada has provided monetary stimulus through lowering interest rates to provide incentives for business spending and capital investment.

Earlier this week, Hamilton was moved into the grey lockdown status followed by the Ontario Government’s announcement that Southern Ontario will be in lockdown effective December 26th for a minimum four-week period. These are difficult and uncertain times, but we must continue to heed the advice of medical professionals and all do our part by practicing social distancing, wearing masks, and frequently washing/sanitizing our hands. Talka will remain open to the public during the lockdown but at reduced capacity with fewer members inside the branch at any one time. Members are asked to be patient while we follow these new restrictions.

2020 Financial Results

This year has been a period of significant growth with 216 new members and total assets increasing to $188 million over the past 11 months.

However, like many small businesses, COVID-19 has had a significant impact on Talka’s net income or more specifically its’ main source of revenue, Net Interest Income or Financial Margin. When the Bank of Canada cut interest rates three times in March 2020, this has reduced our Financial Margin ratio as a percentage of average assets to 1.41% as of November 30th versus the budget of 1.70%. In addition, due to the uncertainty COVID-19 has on unknown future credit losses, the Board approved Management’s recommendation to lower the interest rebates in 2020 to 6% on deposits and 3% on personal loans and residential mortgages.

Board Nominations

The Nominating Committee is continuously seeking Members who are interested in being nominated for a position on the Board of Directors. There are two Board positions open for the upcoming election. These Board positions have a three-year term.

The Nomination Package can be found on Talka’s website or a hard copy can be picked up in the branch.  Completed Nomination Packages should be submitted to Chair of the Board Nomination Committee by the deadline of January 31st, 2021.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year

As 2020 draws to a close, Talka’s Board and Staff want to sincerely thank our members for your business and wish you and your family all the best in 2021. Hopefully, this Christmas season will be filled with spiritual blessings, despite any 2020 hardships, as we celebrate the season each in our own way.