Under its Standing Liquidity Facility (SLF), the Bank of Canada is prepared to provide liquidity on a daily basis to financial institutions that participate directly in the payments systems operated by the Canadian Payments Association. Loans made by the Bank of Canada must be fully collateralized.

In the context of the ongoing review of the Bank of Canada's collateral policy, begun in the spring of 2007, the Bank has decided to broaden the range of securities acceptable as collateral for use under the SLF to include (i) certain types of asset-backed commercial paper (ABCP) sponsored by banks and (ii) U.S. Treasuries.

By the end of March 2008, the Bank will expand the list of eligible securities to include certain types of Canadian dollar-denominated ABCP that meet the following general criteria: are bank-sponsored, are covered by a liquidity provision that meets global standards, and are backed by traditional assets of an acceptable credit quality. In addition, higher standards of disclosure and additional credit ratings will be required. Asset-backed commercial paper backed by collateralized debt obligations and other highly-structured assets will not be considered at this time.

Over the next two months, the Bank will consult with financial institutions and other interested parties on the terms and conditions that will apply to ABCP as collateral. By the end of March 2008, the Bank will announce the terms and conditions regarding the use of ABCP as collateral, including the margins that will be applied. The arrangements for accepting U.S. Treasuries as collateral are expected to be completed by mid-2008.

For further information, please contact:

Jeremy Harrison
(613) 782-8782