Lévis (Qc), February 27, 2019 - For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018, Desjardins Group, Canada's leading financial cooperative group, recorded surplus earnings before member dividends of $2,326 million, up $175 million from fiscal 2017. This result includes a gain of $129 million, net of income taxes, in the second quarter of 2018 realized on the creation of Aviso Wealth. It should also be recalled that fiscal 2017 benefited from a gain net of expenses related to the sale of Western Financial Group Inc. and Western Life Assurance Company. Adjusted surplus earnings(1) were therefore up $295 million or 15.5%. These results allowed Desjardins Group to pursue its cooperative mission for the benefit of its members and clients, and maintain its excellent financial stability.
The amount returned to members and the community was $389 million, including a $253 million provision for member dividends (Q4 2017: $202 million), $94 million in sponsorships, donations and scholarships (Q4 2017: $82 million) and $42 million in Desjardins Member Advantages (Q4 2017: $36 million). There were also commitments related to the $100 million fund, dedicated to regional development, in an amount of $53 million for fiscal 2018.
"I am very proud of Desjardins Group's performance," said Guy Cormier, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Our membership grew at the fastest rate in 10 years, and this includes young adults. Moreover, surplus earnings are growing and living up to our expectations. We also received an award from Corporate Knights for our new ETFs and SocieTerra fund, underscoring Desjardins Group's leadership in achieving the objectives of the Paris Accord. I don't think there is any doubt that efforts to continually strengthen our member and client culture and our digital shift have a lot to do with the remarkable results last year."
Fiscal 2018 financial results