CIA (e)Bulletin/(e)Bulletin de l'ICA

Canadian Institute of Actuaries/Institut canadien des actuaires

September 2013
Elliott Bauer
D.W. Simpson & Company
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By Jacques Lafrance, FCIA

CIA President

My year as President-elect of the Institute was a wonderful time. I learned a lot, in particular more about the various challenges that the actuarial profession has to address. I would like to thank all those who provided me with tremendous support, especially Simon Curtis, our outgoing President; Michel Simard, our Executive Director; and also Jim Christie, our former Immediate Past President. They were very patient with me and took the time to teach me what the management of the Institute entails.

It is with pride and confidence that I begin my term as President of the Institute. Pride because our profession enjoys a solid reputation. The public recognizes and greatly values the talents of Institute members, both in Canada and around the world. And confidence because we can count on a strong Head Office team as well as scores of dedicated volunteers from among our membership.

Still, we are faced with a number of challenges. In the coming months I will have the opportunity to further elaborate on the nature of these challenges and on how the Institute plans to set about meeting them. For now, though, I would just like to identify a few:
  • Improved public understanding of our profession: our profession should be better known, and it is in our interest that this happens. We should take targeted actions to ensure that actuaries’ competencies and abilities are better understood by the public, and especially by policy-makers and potential users of our services.
  • Greater influence on decisions affecting the public interest: building on relevant, high-quality, and timely position papers and research reports, we can help the public take better advantage of actuaries’ skills in making decisions relating to societal issues.
  • Broadening our profession’s fields of practice: the value of actuaries is well-recognized in our traditional areas of practice. However, we must devote more effort and energy to expanding our outreach. In today’s fast-paced world, we must accelerate our efforts to gain more of a foothold in areas that are within reach and in which our skill set can be of benefit, such as the financial sector (in addition to insurance). The future vitality of our profession hangs in the balance.
  • The training we provide to our current and future members must be better geared to the desired competencies: there are significant differences between the competencies required today and those taught a few decades ago. Our training and the competencies that we require of our new members must be reviewed constantly to allow us to offer the public the highest-quality services.
  • Stepping up our efforts to maintain a high level of professionalism on the part of our members: while our profession is not experiencing any serious problems at this time with regard to ethics, we must remain vigilant and promote irreproachable conduct on the part of our members.
  • The standards that we adopt and the training we provide must be adapted to an ever-changing world: international harmonization of the accounting rules used in the financial sector will represent a major challenge in terms of training and developing standards and guidance.
Without neglecting the need for sound governance of the Institute’s activities, the Board recently adopted changes to its mode of operations, aimed at placing greater emphasis on the strategic issues facing Canada’s actuarial profession. I am confident that with these changes, we will be able to make greater strides toward achieving our objectives. Please rest assured, however, that the Institute will not lose sight of the importance of the day-to-day role it must assume in terms of the training, guidance, and services required by our current and future membership.

I see that I am surrounded by passionate people and I am looking forward to working with them in the next year. I am confident that with this passion, we will succeed in helping grow our profession and in making the Institute even more useful to the public and its members. For this to happen, though, we will need you to chip in. I invite you to devote some of your time and energy to Institute activities, regardless of your field of practice and career situation. Your contribution and your ideas will be greatly appreciated.

We’re on the right track. Still, we have to work hard and be vigilant to ensure that this track takes us where we want to go.

Jacques Lafrance, FCIA, is President of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries.


 
Spotlight

 

By Jason Vary, FCIA

The Canadian Institute of Actuaries (CIA) has responsibility for defining what it means to be an actuary in Canada. As such, only Fellows of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries are considered to be fully qualified actuaries in Canada. The recent introduction of the University Accreditation Program (UAP) and ACIA designation has not changed this, nor will it.

The CIA takes its responsibilities very seriously, including the Institute’s responsibility to the public, above the needs of the profession and its members – as stated in the Institute’s mission statement. Taking true responsibility does not simply mean having a robust discipline process in place to enforce the Rules of Professional Conduct. Proactive responsibility lies in the appropriate education of future members and the CIA is now, more than ever, taking responsibility and accountability for Canadian education.

To take it a step further, responsibility means defining, in the CIA’s own terms, the education syllabus from preliminary to Fellowship-level education, and it means choosing the best assessment and validation methods for the credentials that the Institute bestows on its members. This is the CIA’s responsibility and our effectiveness will ensure that the FCIA continues to be recognized and valued for the broad perspective, creative insight, and well-developed business acumen that it represents in Canada and internationally.

A more in-depth definition of the Canadian Education System (CES) is currently being developed. At the end of this project, we expect that the CES will continue to be based on the International Actuarial Association (IAA) syllabus, and will align with the educational requirements of the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) and Society of Actuaries (SOA) syllabuses, but it will be uniquely defined in Canadian terms, as a stand-alone education system leading to the ACIA and FCIA designations, rather than necessarily being derived from other actuarial credentials. And, most importantly, the CIA will control the education syllabus and decide how it will be fulfilled, whether through university education, outsourcing components to other actuarial organizations and education partners, or through the Institute’s own education and professional development programs, such as the current Practice Education Course and Professionalism Workshops.

Consistency, accountability, and control will define the new CIA education paradigm.

One of the components of the CES is the UAP, created by the CIA in 2011 as an evolution of previous work on the Future Education Methods or FEM. The CIA forged ahead on the UAP because it felt that leveraging university accreditation was critical to enhancing the future of the profession in Canada and that it would benefit from shifting focus in the early years from passing exams to obtaining a more well-rounded education. The classroom is the appropriate environment to teach (and test) many of the technical skills that actuaries require now and in the future that will allow them to compete for the best employment opportunities.

The UAP of today provides the CIA with a robust system for recognizing the high-quality education offered by Canadian universities, and provides an option for top actuarial students to complete portions of the Institute’s preliminary eligibility requirements.

For courses beginning in the fall of 2012, certain Canadian universities with recognized actuarial science programs were accredited by the CIA, provided that they met the Institute’s minimum requirements for syllabus coverage, testing and examination procedures, and quality control systems for dealing with cheating and academic dishonesty.

In addition, students applying to the CIA for exemptions must achieve a minimum exemption grade in each course mapped to a single exam syllabus. Usually two to four courses are required for a single exemption. The exemption grades were established for year one, based on the historical passing percentages of students from each university on SOA and CAS exams. The CIA took into consideration the fact that a student would need to meet the minimum exemption grade in every course mapped to an exam, therefore increasing the difficulty factor and likely leading to fewer students qualifying for exemptions than who would be able to pass the professional exams. The minimum exemption grades, which range between A and B by course and by university, are monitored annually for appropriateness.

With the first year of the UAP complete and the program now entering year two, the CIA continues to assess the success of its implementation in accredited universities. Feedback from education partners, members, students, academics, instructors, Accreditation Actuaries, and External Examiners (EEs) is taken into consideration, with one of the most significant sources of feedback coming from the EE visits to all accredited universities in the spring of 2013.

The role of the EE is to assess whether the university is upholding its accreditation agreement and that the conditions under which the CIA granted accreditation are being maintained. The EEs look at the syllabus mapping and course outlines, testing and examination procedures, sample student exams and exam scripts, and the number of students achieving the minimum exemption grade. A final report is compiled for each university using a standardized template. As a result of the 2013 EE process, several universities received letters outlining areas that required immediate attention/correction in order to maintain their accreditation status in good standing. The types of issues identified included the practice of transferring weighting from mid-term exams to final exams, which can lead to grade inflation, and which is not permitted under the UAP, as well as inconsistency in grading procedures between various course instructors. The EEs also collected Instructor Acknowledgement Forms, which require the course instructor to verify that they taught to the CIA-approved syllabus, and that the final grade was calculated based on the policy that 80% of the grade came from examination.

The UAP should not be mistaken for the introduction of a degree requirement for the profession, or an attempt to make actuarial education elitist. It merely provides an option for Canadian candidates to apply to the CIA for exam exemptions for preliminary exams FM, MFE, MLC, and C of the SOA, and 3L (future 3LC and 3ST) of the CAS. No exemption is available for exam P/1. CIA candidates still have the option of completing the professional exams of the CAS and SOA, which the CIA will continue to recognize, subject to the CIA’s ongoing monitoring. Fulfilment of the ACAS, ASA, FCAS, FSA and other non-Canadian credentials are among some of the minimum requirements for the achievement of the ACIA and FCIA.

The CAS and the UK Faculty and Institute of Actuaries both recognize CIA exemptions towards the fulfilment of their respective designations, FCAS and FIA, as a result of an extensive review. The FCIA continues to be recognized by the American Academy of Actuaries (AAA) towards the MAAA designation requirements, when combined with the appropriate U.S. experience.

The CIA has worked collaboratively with the SOA to provide regular information and reports on the UAP as the program has evolved in an effort to have the society recognize CIA exemptions and ultimately allow UAP candidates to achieve the FSA designation. The CIA has welcomed observers on the Accreditation Committee from both the SOA and CAS towards this end.

Ultimately, the CIA hopes that the SOA embraces UAP candidates as members, and that these members will ultimately strengthen the society’s education system through volunteerism. The SOA and CIA have long shared a common membership and volunteer resource base, and this is not expected to change.

The UAP has recently attracted a fair amount of attention in SOA publications, including articles in the SOA magazine The Actuary and a blog on the SOA website. So the CIA UAP is clearly on the SOA’s mind.

The Institute appreciates that the practical considerations of a university-based education system are significant for the SOA, as is the relative scalability of adopting such a program in the U.S., and there are implications for the SOA’s international strategy. Whether a similar system would work in the U.S. or elsewhere is not for the CIA to comment on or decide.

The CIA’s concern is with Canada, and the UAP model will proceed as one of the robust elements of the CES—just one element of what the CIA feels is a balanced eligibility and education process. The UAP works for preliminary exams but will not replace Fellowship-level education and exams, nor can it ever replace the practical and Canadian work experience requirements.

The CIA values all of the various perspectives and feedback, both positive and negative, regarding the merits of a university-based system for some of the preliminary exams. All of this dialogue leads to the ongoing strengthening and development of the CES.

Our latest understanding is that the SOA Board will make a decision regarding the UAP next month. While the CIA hopes for a favourable outcome, the decision on whether the society will recognize CIA UAP exemptions towards the ASA and FSA designations will not alter the CIA’s direction on education or its efforts to enhance the recognition and portability of the FCIA designation.

For more information on the UAP or the CIA’s eligibility requirements, visit: http://www.cia-ica.ca/membership/uap
 
Questions may be directed to accreditation@cia-ica.ca

Jason Vary, FCIA, is Chair of the Eligibility and Education Council.
 
MOVERS AND SHAKERS
At Great-West Life, Brad Fedorchuk has been named the new vice-president of group major accounts, and Loretta Kulchycki the new vice-president of group marketing.

Morneau Shepell has named three CIA members as partners in the following practices:
  • Retirement solutions: Luc Grandchamp, who is responsible for business development and client management in Eastern Canada;
  • Retirement and health and welfare solutions: Eric Aubin, who leads consulting teams in Québec City; and
  • Workers' compensation and actuarial consulting: Thane MacKay, who serves as a client relationship lead in Atlantic Canada.
Benoît Hudon has become partner and retirement leader for Eastern Canada at Mercer. He will also be responsible for innovation initiatives for retirement in Canada.

Ian Markham, Canadian retirement innovation leader at Towers Watson, discussed his career and his inspiration in a recent issue of Benefits Canada magazine.

Brian Traxler has been appointed vice-president, individual life, for SCOR Global Life Canada. He will be part of the SGL Canada management team and will lead the acquisition of the individual life new business in Canada by developing and implementing strategic initiatives for existing and targeted clients.
______________________________________

Networking is a key part of any successful professional's career, and the CIA is offering you a fresh opportunity to inform your peers about your achievements and progress.

Our (e)Bulletin section, Actuaries on the Move, is a chance for you to publicize your new job, title, credentials or other information. This is an opportunity to tell thousands of fellow actuaries and financial professionals—whether they are ex-colleagues, former college friends, potential employers, future clients, etc.—about, for example:
  • Your new job;
  • A change of title or area of responsibility;
  • Your new qualifications;
  • A change of contact details;
  • Awards or other recognition; or
  • Publication of academic papers or articles.
Simply send an e-mail—one line of information can be enough, but feel free to add more if you so wish—to the CIA's English Editor at andrew.melvin@cia-ica.ca and we will aim to include it in the next issue of the (e)Bulletin.

For more news of CIA members and their activities, follow the CIA on Twitter.
 
Institute News

By Dave Dickson, FCIA

As a practising actuary I never paid a lot of attention to research. In a pricing role I often used the results of research in pricing products but to some extent took the role of research for granted. I remember being involved with pricing critical illness products when the only experience data available were from a study done in Australia, and I wondered why there were no data from North America and why no actuarial association had data to help with pricing this emerging product. About a year ago I joined the CIA’s Research Committee, and recently became Chair. Since then I’ve gained a great appreciation for the importance of research to the CIA and to the public we serve.

Recently the committee used the Member Listening Group to find out how much members knew about it and if they were interested in learning more. The results showed that members are very interested in the committee and becoming more involved.

The Research Committee is made up of a steering committee with seven subcommittees representing our major practice areas. The subcommittees cover:
  • Annuitant experience;
  • Segregated fund experience;
  • Pensions;
  • Group life and health;
  • Individual life;
  • Property and casualty; and
  • Living benefits.
The subcommittees generate ideas for research projects, get them approved, and then manage them. Projects are usually outsourced.

At any one time we have almost 20 research projects underway. For example, we have the following:
  • Annual annuitant mortality studies;
  • Annual Canadian standard ordinary life experience mortality studies;
  • Segregated fund lapse study and policyholder experience study;
  • Our recent (and first) pensioner mortality study;
  • Group post-retirement medical and dental claims utilization study;
  • Ten-year term lapse study;
  • Term-to-100 lapse study and universal life level cost of insurance (LCOI) study;
  • Property and casualty water damage study; and
  • Recent critical illness experience study.
Other CIA committees also work with the Research Committee to have projects completed. For example, we are working with the Committee on Actuarial Evidence to investigate how discount rates used for commuted pensions and other purposes are set provincially, and also with the Risk Management Committee on a project involving operational risk.

Over the last few years we’ve also increased our involvement with the Society of Actuaries (SOA) and have a number of joint projects with them, such as a project to study enterprise risk management in Canada and also one to model defined benefit pension plans. These projects are usually at least partially funded by the SOA, and the society also helps us to manage them. Sometimes the project is one that was successfully completed in the U.S., and we are doing a Canadian version. We are also a member of a committee that looks for research projects that would benefit Canada, the U.S., and Mexico.

We are always looking for research ideas and encourage members to contact us. Recently we’ve added a research section to the CIA’s new website with information about the committee and its various projects. We plan to make the website more interactive so that members can submit, or comment on, research ideas. We also plan to communicate more regularly to members about what the committee is up to.

I find working on the committee is very rewarding as we are doing important projects affecting most practice areas. It also allows us to work with other committees within the CIA, people from the SOA, and even actuaries from Mexico. The projects we complete often gain recognition from the public. For example, our recent pension mortality experience study has received a lot of coverage from the press and we hope for more when the final paper is released.

So I’m paying much more attention to research these days, and I finally found critical illness experience data.

If you are interested in joining our committee or subcommittees, have research ideas or any comments, feel free to contact me.

Dave Dickson, FCIA, is Chair of the Research Committee.

 
By Micheline Dionne, FCIA

It is clearer every day that we live in an interconnected world. The planet is getting smaller with an incident in one country having an influence on many others, either directly or indirectly. In the past we were used to thinking predominantly about Canada and developed our risk assessments and reporting measures within the Canadian community. We now need to consider more and more the harmonization of our approaches to what is being developed across the planet, to ensure we respond to the demands of our customers, i.e., the person on the street, the employers, the financial institutions, or the regulators. They too now turn to the world for products to meet their needs, for profitable ideas to generate sales within their risk appetite, or for best risk management practices.

As the influence of international initiatives grows, so does the need for the CIA to stay connected to those initiatives, to understand their implications and to provide useful comments during their development. It is the Committee on International Relations (CIR) that is charged by the CIA Board to monitor pertinent international developments and to be the Institute’s voice in them. In order for the committee to carry out its mandate, it changed its structure a year ago and now acts as a quasi-council. That means that it has four subcommittees staffed to watch developments and make contributions as required. Submissions developed by any of the subcommittees are reviewed and subsequently approved by the CIR for release. Those subcommittees are charged with monitoring the following specific domains:
  • The activities of the International Actuarial Association (IAA);
  • Developments in pension reporting;
  • Insurance reporting; and
  • Insurance regulatory supervision.
In June, the CIR reported on its activities to the CIA Annual Meeting’s General Business Session for the first time, and it also joined the CIA Board and councils session on strategic initiatives at that same meeting.

As a group we responded to requests for comments from the International Accounting Standards Board, International Valuation Standards Council, and IAA, exercising CIA voting rights on the IAA’s affairs. You can find further details on the CIR pages of the CIA website, as well as the names of the members of the committee and its subcommittees.

Projects being worked on as I write these lines are responses to:
  • The re-exposure draft for insurance known as IFRS 4 (Phase 2);
  • The Financial Stability Board on its Consultation on Principles for an Effective Risk Appetite Framework; and
  • The IAA on its internal governance, through a survey.
For the IASB insurance exposure draft, a related session took place at this month’s CIA Seminar for the Appointed Actuary. We are also planning a further article on that topic later in the year.

Also on its way is a posting for a CIA delegate on the newly-created IAA committee on health (both private and public health). As health is becoming a challenge due to the aging population, discussions on how it is being addressed in different parts of the world are increasingly relevant.

Stay tuned and do not hesitate to pass on international development news that you feel the CIA should know about and/or react to.

Micheline Dionne, FCIA, is Chair of the Committee on International Relations.

 
CIA member Jean-Guy Sauriol is now hard at work preparing for the latest and greatest of a series of adventures, rowing the Atlantic Ocean from the Canary Islands to the Caribbean. The launch is scheduled for late November to early December.

His 21-foot rowboat, Maple, was custom built in England and was completed in mid-July 2013. It is now in storage in England waiting for the big day. It looks nothing like the rowboats you might have played with up at the cottage: Maple is a high-tech, sleek vessel, containing two watertight cabins, safety and survival equipment sufficient for up to six months, a water-maker, solar panels, batteries and, last but not least, state of the art communications equipment. M. Sauriol will be alone at sea but not lonely, keeping in touch with his family, friends, and fans via phone calls, online blogs, Twitter, and Facebook.

His adventure, named Maple Lys, is a tribute to both Canada and his French-Canadian heritage. If all goes well, he should reach his destination in late February or early March 2014.

At 60 years of age, M. Sauriol is no stranger to gruelling challenges. In the past, he completed the Montréal Marathon, the Hawaii Iron Man Triathlon, and the Yukon River Quest canoe-kayak race. This will be his biggest challenge yet! His boat may be completed, but he continues to work on his fitness training, which includes up to several hours a day in a rowing boat.

You are welcome to follow his adventure at his website, www.maplelyssolo.com, where he will be posting periodic updates. M. Sauriol has offered to link his adventure with the Actuarial Foundation of Canada, and you can show your support by making a donation online at www.actuaries.ca/afc/index.cfm.
 
 
What does the future hold for life expectancy? During the Society of Actuaries’ Living to 100 Symposium in Orlando from January 8–10, prominent actuaries from Canada, the U.S., and the UK will examine mortality projections from a social security perspective.

Jean-Claude Ménard (pictured), chief actuary of the Office of Superintendent of Financial Institutions, will discuss the development of mortality estimates used in Canada Pension Plan projections. Stephen Goss, chief actuary of the Social Security administration, will provide an update on mortality projections and related issues with respect to the U.S. Social Security program. Adrian Gallop of the Government Actuary’s Department in the UK, responsible for pensions policy, demography, and statistics, will talk about past, present, and future trends of UK mortality.

Mortality is a fundamental and vitally important element in the development of projections of the finances of social security programs around the world. These actuaries will discuss some of the key factors and issues associated with these projections. Improving mortality has, and will continue to have, a significant impact on the affordability and importance of income through retirement in these countries.

The issues that will be discussed throughout the symposium include: will historical mortality improvement trends continue in light of the increasing number of those who are obese or have Alzheimer’s; and what will be the financial impact to society of the growing number of elderly people, and what challenges and opportunities will result?

The fifth in a series, this international symposium is expected to be the best yet. It will have more featured speakers and networking opportunities than ever before, plus panel discussions on the implications of aging and the applications of mortality modelling.

To register and for more information about this research initiative, see http://livingto100.soa.org/symposium.aspx


 
 
CIA member Rob Brown (pictured) is to chair a panel of actuaries to review the 26th Actuarial Report on the Canada Pension Plan (CPP). He will be joined by fellow members Mark Campbell and Thomas Levy on the panel, which has been established by the Office of the Chief Actuary (OCA).

Canada’s chief actuary, Jean-Claude Ménard, said the independent peer reviews of actuarial reports on the CPP had proven to be an "authoritative reference for the quality of work conducted and help to promote Canadians’ confidence in the valuation of this important program."
 
For more details, click here.

 
 
CIA President Jacques Lafrance was among the guest speakers at Association of Canadian Pension Management’s (ACPM) National Conference, which took place in Ottawa a few weeks ago.

Speaking during a workshop on pension plan funding rules, M. Lafrance said that when prudently managed and designed, defined benefit (DB) pension plans are a viable, efficient, and appropriate alternative. He added that there was no perfect solution, but the DB promise had to be taken seriously. The CIA’s position, he said, was that changes must be made to pension legislation in order to both provide more flexible funding options and reduce the risk of pension failure.

For more on the ACPM, click here.
 

Former CIA President Yves Guérard (pictured) is continuing his efforts to focus international attention on the contribution actuaries can bring to the management of environment risks, looking at the work of Canadian volunteers, among others, who are developing a climate change index for actuaries.

M. Guérard’s article "Resources and Environment: A new challenge for actuaries" has been published in Actuaries, the magazine of the Institute of Actuaries of Australia. It highlights the report Determining the Impact of Climate Change on Insurance Risk and the Global Community, which was commissioned by the CIA, Casualty Actuarial Society, Society of Actuaries, and American Academy of Actuaries, as well as a second report, Resource constraints: sharing a finite world - Implications of Limits to Growth for the Actuarial Profession, commissioned by the UK actuarial profession.

In his article, which considers a range of resources and environment issues that actuaries must address, the former Secretary-General of the International Actuarial Association writes:

"Our role as actuaries is to help optimise decisions. We don’t seek to prove or disprove the estimates made by the experts but we need to understand what they are saying . . .

"The last three chapters [of the first above-mentioned report] are dedicated to the development of climate indices and hence to Impacts and Risk assessment. The report proposes a definition of risk that ‘may be estimated quantitatively as the product of separate functions of hazard, exposure of assets and vulnerability’ . . .

"Insurance companies could use this approach to derive adjustments to their risk assessment process reflecting a consolidated expected impact of climate change. As the conclusions point out ‘this would represent a significant advance over existing approaches, which cover only a limited array of climate hazards, and are not standardised to reflect the key role of climate variability.’"

M. Guérard, who earlier this year wrote about the CIA-backed report in another magazine, urged his fellow actuaries to take heed of the study’s conclusion: "While only a rough framework has been sketched here, it seems clear that further investigation in any of these areas would reap significant rewards in terms of estimating the threat of hazards arising from climate change on life, property, and natural capital.

"I’d like to respond to that implicit appeal by suggesting two areas for further investigations:

  • Could the [Actuaries Climate Risk Index] support the underwriting of climate bonds that would play, for climate, the role of longevity bonds in hedging mortality risks?
  • Developing the stochastic dimension for the climate indices."

The article, which incorporates figures and other research, is available on the IAAus website here.

 
Registration is open for the 2014 International Congress of Actuaries, running from March 30–April 4 in Washington, D.C. Don’t miss this opportunity to Learn, Interact, and Grow with your fellow actuaries from every discipline and from around the world.

ICA 2014 offers significant discounts for those who register early, and the early registration period has been extended to October 18.

The congress will provide delegates with numerous opportunities for significant professional and personal growth. The program includes 85 parallel sessions covering over 220 presentations in seven specialty tracks to appeal to actuaries of all disciplines and interests. These sessions will expose delegates to cutting edge thinking and present fresh insights into the challenges faced in the industry today.

The educational content has been organized so that delegates can register for only half of the event, with certain tracks offered in the first half of the week and others offered in the second.

Delegates who participate in the full week of ICA 2014 will have access to 27 actual hours of continuing professional development; those attending the first half of the week will have access to 18 actual hours, and those attending the second half 15 actual hours.

As a complement to the extensive educational offerings of the delegate program, ICA 2014 promises an enjoyable social program for delegates and their accompanying guests.

Additional details, including the parallel session topics and descriptions, can be found on the ICA 2014 website at www.ICA2014.org.
 

 

By Marcia Gallos, FCIA

As the CIA (e)Bulletin returns, I am also back providing some information on volunteering in the CIA. Next month, I will resume profiling our more decorated volunteers (please see my previous articles on Allan Edwards and Minaz Lalani).

What Makes a Good Volunteer?

Volunteering can be very rewarding. But it’s not enough to call in for a CIA committee meeting and passively listen to the discussion. Your active participation and sharing of experiences are needed to enrich the collective understanding of the problem at hand. Whether it involves as simple a decision as the background of the annual Volunteer Awards brochure or as complicated as the new critical illness morbidity study, committee work relies on teams of volunteers to make things happen.

If I sit and think about when I have had my most rewarding experiences as a volunteer, CIA and otherwise, I can always reflect that it’s when I’ve given as much as I’ve taken. And, conversely, some of my most disappointing experiences come when I have not committed as much as I could have.

So, what are some of these basic qualities?
  • Dedication: promise to invest your time and energy to the cause.
  • Dependability: deliver what you promise. Be a shining example of reliability.
  • Comprehension: understand what is required to do the job to the best of your ability, including investing the time to learn the job.
  • Energy: participate—by sharing your enthusiasm and a positive attitude! People are going to be reluctant to collaborate with a sourpuss.
  • Flexibility: be open to new experiences, methods, and possibilities.
  • Teamwork: practice kindness, respect, cooperation, understanding, and humility. Unilateral decision-making is rare in the volunteer environment.
Overall, hold nothing back and you will more than likely be rewarded with the satisfaction of contributing to the success and growth of this wonderfully complicated profession.

Getting Started: All You Have to Do is Say Yes!

  1. Go to the CIA website. Log in to the members section. On the left-hand-side navigation panel, click on My Profile > My Volunteer Profile > Update Volunteer Profile. Once you’ve completed the Update Volunteer Profile form to indicate your skills, experience, and general interests, go to the Modify My Committee and Task Force Interests form to indicate specific volunteer committees that you are interested in joining.
  2. Press your case. If you have a strong interest in a specific committee, contact the CIA or the committee chair. They will be happy to provide you with more information or to invite you to a meeting. You can also gain a feel for what each committee does by visiting the Volunteer Booth at many CIA meetings.
  3. Make it a priority. Understand the time commitment required for the volunteer position and set aside time in your schedule. Communicate any concerns to the committee chair and allow them to help you in assessing whether the opportunity is right for you.
  4. Get your employer on board. In many cases, volunteering can actually bring value to your employer. Many committees might overlap with your work or provide you with valuable training and experience. In many cases, you may be able to designate work time towards volunteering.
  5. Stay tuned. Keep reading the Volunteers’ Corner articles in the (e)Bulletin.
  6. Check out the resources for volunteers in the Volunteer Centre on the CIA website.
Current Vacancies

There are no vacancies to advertise this month. If you are interested in volunteering, the best course of action is to register as indicated in the previous section.

Committee chairs use the Volunteer Applicant Registry as the first course of action to fill vacancies in their committees.

Marcia Gallos, FCIA, is Chair of the New Members Committee, former chair of the Committee on Volunteer Initiatives, and a member of the Member Services Council.

 

1. Why did you become an actuary?
I was strong in math and my Grade 11 math teacher brought his best friend, an actuary, in for career day. I wasn’t interested in teaching or research, but the actuarial careers seemed a good fit for me.

2. When you tell people you’re an actuary, what do they think you do?
It depends. Most people have never heard of it. I usually tell people I am a pension consultant rather than an actuary. Those that have heard of an actuary want to know how long they will live or why their car insurance premiums are so high!

3. Who has inspired you the most during your career? Did you have a mentor in your early career?
Early in my career, I was lucky to work with a number of experienced, senior actuaries. The one who had the most influence on me and who I consider my mentor was John Beaton. I worked with John for 20 years before he retired. He was a brilliant actuary with a great sense of humour, a fantastic consultant, and an innovative thinker. He could read an audience very well and was a great communicator. From him I learned to think outside the box, see the big picture, and approach issues from a practical perspective.

4. What do you enjoy most about your job?
I really enjoy helping my clients manage their pension plans in the volatile economy. It is very rewarding to find solutions that have positive real-life impact on our clients’ employees. I love the people part of the job—working with pension committees and HR folks, and helping them make sense of the pension world.

5. What career would you follow if you weren’t an actuary?
I’d probably be a vet, a park ranger, or an organic farmer!

6. What are your hobbies?
Mountain biking, hiking, skiing, camping, kayaking, soccer, Search and Rescue, and anything involving my family.

7. What is your favourite music, book, and film?
I love a really wide variety of music—I currently have Joy Kills Sorrow and Trombone Shorty on my iPod, along with Kanye West, Billy Talent, Train, and Maroon 5! My favourite movie is Sound of Music. I am a voracious reader and would be hard-pressed to pick a favourite—I’m currently reading 419 by Will Ferguson.

8. Where is your dream vacation destination?
I recently discovered all-inclusive vacations with my family, which are pretty sweet, but I’d still rather be hiking or biking and camping in a remote wilderness setting with alpine lakes! I would love to do more travelling, too . . . Galapagos, Africa, Australia . . .

9. What do you do better than anyone you know?
I’m a peacekeeper: I read people well and can often help calm down tense situations . . . comes in handy with three teenagers!

10. If you could be anybody else, alive or dead, who would it be, and why?
I wouldn’t want to be anyone else, but would like to have more time to be me! It’s really hard to balance work and life. I’d like to have more time with family and friends, and more time to travel and volunteer.

Rosalind Gilbert, FCIA, FSA, is Associate Partner, Retirement Strategies, at Aon Hewitt, Vancouver.



If you would like to take part in Introduce Yourself, this link will take you to an English survey form. In the upper right corner, there is a selection box where you can choose to work on the English or French survey.
 
Pierre Desmarais

Pierre Desmarais, who has died in hospital in Guelph, ON, at the age of 68, became a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries and Society of Actuaries in 1971. He went on to enjoy an actuarial career that included serving for the Alexander Consulting Group, W. F. Corroon Canada, AIE, Jardine Insurance Services, Sovereign Life Assurance, and Carl A. Kench & Associates. M. Desmarais also ran his own company, Desspar, for a time.

Earl Petz

U.S. Navy veteran Earl Petz of Illinois spent his entire actuarial career with one company: the Lumbermen’s Mutual Casualty Company—part of Kemper Insurance Companies—where he became chief actuary. Born in 1925, and a graduate of the Illinois Institute of Technology, he served on numerous Casualty Actuarial Society committees and retired in 1991.

Michael McGuinness

Born in Africa, Rhodes Scholar Michael McGuinness emigrated to Canada in 1952 and began an actuarial career that would lead to key positions at National Life Assurance and Eckler.

Mr. McGuinness, whose education included a BA and MA from Oxford University, served as a Councillor and Editor for the CIA, and volunteered for a number of committees over two decades, including Manpower, Planning, and Financial Reporting. He was also elected to various positions with the Society of Actuaries, including serving as Vice-President. He retired in 2000, and died earlier this year in York, ON, at the age of 84.

 
THIS MONTH'S PUBLICATIONS

September's published documents:

SESGSAA2013

Luncheon Speaker: Strategy Formulation in an Increasingly Unpredictable World (Côté)

SES13-1AA2013

Session 13: Preparing for ORSA - Some practical issues (Racine)

CTEECI

Committee on Continuing Education Contact Information (September 26, 2013)

SES10AA2013

Session 10: Solvency II Critical topics and outlook (Pouliot)

SES10-2AA2013

Session 10: Developing Solvency Frameworks in Canada and Europe (St-Georges)

SES10-1AA2013

Session 10: Developing Solvency Frameworks in Canada and Europe (Malin)

SES5-1AA2013

Session 5: State of the Reinsurance Market (Lyons)

SES3AA2013

Session 3: Using Predictive Modeling Techniques in Reserving (Gross)

SES5AA2013

Session 5: Capital Tranching: A RAROC Approach to Assessing Reinsurance Cost Effectiveness (Mango)

SES9-1AA2013

Session 9: Proposed Regulatory Capital Framework—Status Update and Implications (Bégin)

SES1-2AA2013

Session 1: The OSFI Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) (Thibault)

BA077

Agenda: Board Meeting No 77 (September 25, 2013)

SC123113PP

Standards of Practice (December 31, 2013) (with changes to part 3000 effective September 18, 2013)

SES1AE2013

Session 1: Update from the AE Committee

SES1-1AA2013

Session 1: Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) (Fillion)

SES9AA2013

Session 9: P&C Proposed Regulatory Capital Framework – status update and implications (Roberge)

SES11AA2013

Session 11: The revised IASB proposals on insurance – P&C actuarial perspectives (Friedland-Parkinson-Turner)

SES8AA2013

Session 8: IFRS Phase II Standard: An update on the latest release (Curtis-Papillon-Dionne)

SES1AA2013

Session 1: Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) (Tremblay)

SES9AE2013

Session 9: Leveraging cloud computing to boost performance (Quiniou)

SES4-2AA2013

Session 4: Finding New Opportunities with Predictive Analytics (Banfield)

SC091813

Standards of Practice (September 18, 2013)

SES6AA2013

Session 6: Proposed changes in the Economic Reinvestment Assumptions for Life Insurer Valuation (Faulds-Berendsen-Gerbeau)

SP091813

Standards of Practice – Pension (September 18, 2013)

213077

Educational Note—Dynamic Capital Adequacy Testing

SES7AE2013

Session 7: Bodily Injury Assessment: When the Letter of the Law Does Not Necessarily Follow Actuarial Logic (Gardner)

SES4-1AA2013

Session 4 (Life) • Predictive modeling – Uses in decision making (Stehno)

SES8AE2013

Session 8: Exploring the Calculation Needs of Law Professionals Margill - Interest Calculation Software (Gélinas)

SES3-1AE2013

Session 3: Statistics Canada Open Licence Agreements (Karp)

213081

Educational Note Supplement: Guidance for Assumptions for Hypothetical Wind-Up and Solvency Valuations Update – Effective June 30, 2013, and Applicable to Valuations with Effective Dates Between June 30, 2013, and December 30, 2013

213084

Memorandum: Final Standards: Revisions to the Practice-Specific Standards for Pension Plans – Assumptions for Hypothetical Wind-up and Solvency Valuations

213083

Final Standards – Revisions to Part 3000 of the Practice-Specific Standards for Pension Plans – Assumptions for Hypothetical Wind-up and Solvency (subsections 3240 and 3260)

213082

Educational Note – Alternative Settlement Methods for Hypothetical Wind-Up and Solvency Valuations

213085

Research Paper—Fair Market Value of Life Insurance Policies

SES12AA2013

Session 12: CLIFR: News and Views

213076

Communiqué: Canada’s Current Health Care System is Not Sustainable; Action Needed to Maintain the System’s Survival – Actuarial Research Shows Just How Fast Action is Needed

213075

Sustainability of the Canadian Health Care System and Impact of the 2014 Revision to the Canada Health Transfer

SES4AA2013

Session 4: Predictive modeling – Uses in decision making (Rioux)

SES7AA2013

Session 7: What Have We Done for You Lately? An Update from the Committee on Property and Casualty Insurance Financial Reporting (Périgny-Potts-Laforce)

SES13AA2013

Session 13: Preparing for ORSA - Some practical issues (Léveillé)

ERMAM057

ERMA: Minutes – Meeting – June 14, 2013

SES2-1AA2013

Session 2: Update on Dividend Determination Education Note (Dark)

SES2-2AA2013

Session 2: Actuarial Oversight of ALM (Gorski)

213080

Submission to the International Valuation Standards Council: Valuation of liabilities

213079

IAA Mortality Update No 1, July 2013

PPPAE

Public Position: Actuarial Science, Expert Testimony and the Canadian Legal System

SES6INV2013

Keynote Address

PPMAE

Public Position: Actuarial Science, Expert Testimony and the Canadian Legal System (Full Version)

PENREG2013

Registration Form for Pension Seminar 2013

INVREG2013

Registration form Investment Seminar 2013

AEOBJ2013

Priorities and Objectives: Committee on Actuarial Evidence

SES19SEPAE2013

Session September 19, 2013:Agenda and Priotities/Objectives

SES3AE2013

Session 3: Statistics Canada Open Licence Agreement (Cheng)

SES6AE2013

Session 6: Actuarial Standards Board – Current Activity (Christie)

SES2AE2013

Session 2: Beyond Pension Valuation–Adding Value in Family Law Matters in Ontario and Elsewhere (Joczak-Martel)

PROFWREG

Registration form - Professionalism Workshop

EECA108

Eligibility and Education Council Agenda - Meeting nº 108 (September 5, 2013)

EECM107

Eligibility and Education Council Minutes - Meeting nº 107 (July 15, 2013)

EECMOTION

Eligibility and Education Council Motions

213074

Submission to the Régie des rentes du Québec: Draft Regulation: Supplemental Pension Plans Act

September's tweets from @CIA_Actuaries:

CIA members Ian Edelist and Ian Markham quoted in @financialpost on future of municipal employees' pensions http://tinyurl.com/ciaica276

Julie Dickson of @OSFIBSIF: companies with top-notch risk management/governance regimes will be ahead of the curve http://tinyurl.com/ciaica275

Joint @CIA_Actuaries@SOActuaries actuarial study: health system is not sustainable without significant intervention http://tinyurl.com/ciaica274

@OSFIBSIF releases the Memorandum to the Actuary (Life Insurance) for 2013 http://tinyurl.com/ciaica273

Actuary is the third best career in Canada, says new survey from @adzunaCAhttp://tinyurl.com/ciaica272

"DB pension plans can be viable, efficient, appropriate alternative" - CIA President Jacques Lafrance at ACPM event http://tinyurl.com/ciaica270

CIA members Rob Brown (chair), Mark Campbell, Thomas Levy appointed to panel reviewing 26th Actuarial Report on CPP http://tinyurl.com/ciaica271

@StatCan_eng: market value of Canadian employer-sponsored pension funds was $1.2 tn at end of first quarter, up 3.9% http://tinyurl.com/ciaica269

@OSFIBSIF releases 2014 Actuarial Report on the Employment Insurance Premium Rate http://tinyurl.com/ciaica268

Canada is the sixth happiest country in the world, says report. Causes and policy implications considered http://tinyurl.com/ciaica267

@OSFIBSIF issues longevity documents: policy advisory http://tinyurl.com/ciaica264  and consultation paper http://tinyurl.com/ciaica265

International Actuarial Association paper Stress Testing and Scenario Analysis is now available http://tinyurl.com/ciaica263

@HLNTV broadcast highlights importance of the actuarial profession: "great job, great pay" http://tinyurl.com/ciaica262

 

 

 
Calendar of Events

CIA Webcast - Actuaries’ Involvement in the Supervision Approach, Québec Insurance Sector - October 16, 2013

Speakers:
Jean-François Ouellet, ACAS, director, insurers supervision division, Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF)
Jean Côté, ACIA, ACAS, CRM, executive advisor, insurers supervision branch, AMF

The AMF is the Québec integrated regulatory body charged with protecting Québec consumers of financial products. Actuarial supervision is an important contributory factor in risk-based supervision of insurers licensed to practise in Québec. In this webcast we will present the results of actuarial analyses of actuaries’ reports and Dynamic Capital Adequacy Tests (DCATs) for Québec chartered casualty insurers, as well as upcoming changes in the instructions for these reports. We will also examine the results of the earthquake exposure analysis.

CIA Investment Seminar - Toronto - November 13, 2013

CIA 2014 Practice Education Course – Ottawa – June 1–4, 2014

CIA 2014 Annual Meeting – Vancouver – June 18–19, 2014

CIA 2014 Seminar for the Appointed Actuary – Toronto – September 22–23, 2014

CIA 2014 Pension Seminar – Montréal – November 4, 2014

CIA 2014 Investment Seminar – Montréal – November 5, 2014

CIA 2015 Annual Meeting – Ottawa – June 17–18, 2015

 
Board and Council Updates

Board

The following people have been appointed to the councils/committees named below, effective July 1, 2013:

  • Eligibility and Education Council: Jacqueline Friedland (pictured) and Mercy Yan;
  • Member Services Council: Jean-Yves Rioux;
  • Practice Council: Daniel Doyle and Michel St-Germain;
  • International Relations: Jacqueline Friedland and Chris Townsend;
  • Governance (new committee): Chris Townsend (Chair), Robert Stapleford, Michel St-Germain, and Jacques Tremblay;
  • Human Resource, Finance, and Audit (new committee): John Dark (Chair), Simon Curtis, Daniel Doyle, Michel Giguère, and Joe Nunes;
  • Risk (new committee): Claude Ferguson (Chair), John Dark, Steve Easson, Sharon Giffen, and Jean-Yves Rioux;
  • 2014 Elections: Larry Miller (Chair), Stuart Wason, Kathy Thompson, Dennis Schettler, Heike Reck, Jean-François Poitras, and Claudette Cantin.

The memberships of the following councils and committees for 2013–2014 have been approved, effective July 1, 2013:

  • Eligibility and Education Council: Jason Vary (Chair), Angelita Graham (Vice-chair), Alana Farrell, Mathieu Boudreault, Thomas Hinton, Lynn Grenier-Lew, Rémi Villeneuve, Anne Vincent, Joel Cohen, and Bruno Gagnon. Note: Anne Vincent’s term expired on September 3, 2013.
  • Member Services Council: Marc-André Melançon (Chair), Marc Tardif (Vice-chair), Jason Alleyne, Marc-André Belzil, Claire Bilodeau, Nari Persad, Dave Dickson, Marcia Gallos, Frank Grossman, and Marie-Hélène Malenfant. Note: Cathy Shum-Adams, Julie Chambers, and Marcus Robertson have completed their terms.
  • Practice Council: Bruce Langstroth (Chair), Pierre Dionne (Vice-chair), Richard Larouche, Dale Mathews, Hélène Pouliot, Les Rehbeli, Faisal Siddiqi (new appointment, effective March 21, 2013), and Don Tettmar. Note: Alan Exley has completed his term, effective June 30, 2013.
  • International Relations: Micheline Dionne (Chair), James Doherty (Vice-chair), David Congram, Jacqueline Friedland, Michael Hale, Robert McKay, Geoffrey Melbourne, Catherine Robertson, Christopher Townsend, Stan Warawa, and Jacques Lafrance (ex officio). Note: Jacques Tremblay’s term ended on June 21, 2013, once he became President-elect.
  • Professional Conduct: Liam McFarlane (Chair), Douglas Brooks (Vice-chair), Richard Béliveau, François Boulanger, Stephen Butterfield, Dave Dickson, Luc Dionne, Stephen Eadie, Sym Gill (not enrolled in the CIA), Don Ireland, Ian Karp, Maryse Larouche, Claude Lockhead, Bonnie Lysyk (not enrolled in the CIA), Jean-Claude Primeau, and Simon Curtis (ex officio). Note: the terms of Wayne Berney, Luc Farmer, Danielle Lamarche, and Jim Christie (ex officio) ended on June 30, 2013.
  • Tribunal Panel: J. Edward Nixon (Chair), David Short (Vice-chair), Martin Brown, David Congram, Gilles Dufresne, Brian FitzGerald, Neville Henderson, Christopher (Kit) Moore, Daniel Murphy, James Paterson, Philip Pothier, Allan Shapira, William Solomon, Monique Tremblay, and Nancy Yake.

The Risk Management Committee, Committee on Finance, and Task Force on Policies have been disbanded with thanks.

Eligibility and Education Council

The following people have been appointed to the positions named below:

  • Practice Education Course—Individual Life and Annuities liaison to the Society of Actuaries: David Stalker, effective July 1, 2013;
  • Co-chair of the Academic Subcommittee of the Committee on Continuing Education: Claudia Gagné, effective immediately;
  • The CIA’s representative external reviewers to the CERA Global Board: Yana Harris and Mariève Tétreault, effective immediately;
  • Vice-chair of the Eligibility Committee: Maxime-Frédéric Brochu-Leclair, retroactive to July 1, 2013;
  • Accreditation Actuary at the University of Toronto: Jingjing (Vicki) Zhang, effective immediately; and
  • Accreditation Actuary at Université Laval: Denis Latulippe, effective immediately.

The appointment of Michael Hale as the CIA’s CERA Treaty Board representative from November 2013 to November 2014 has been approved.

For information only:

Neville Henderson and Howard Lyons have resigned from the Academic Relations Committee, and leave with thanks. Mr. Lyons has also completed his term as the Accreditation Actuary at the University of Toronto.
Isabelle Larouche has completed her term as the Accreditation Actuary at Université Laval, and leaves with thanks.
Claire Bilodeau has completed her term as a member of the Continuing Education Committee, and leaves with thanks.


Member Services Council

The following people have been appointed to the groups named below:

  • Research Committee: Dave Dickson, chair, effective June 30, 2013;
  • Subcommittees of the Research Committee:
    • Individual Living Benefits Experience: Jill Buchanan, Michelle Baillargeon, and Maria Semak, effective May 10, 2013;
    • Individual Life Experience: Marie-Josée Blanchet, Rhys DeGrave, Blake Hill, and Lisa Zwicker, effective June 4, 2013;
    • Pension Experience: Bob Howard, effective July 2011, and Michael Banks, effective June 4, 2013; and
    • Segregated Fund Experience: Rohana Ambagaspitiya, Steve Bocking, Mary Fong, Jonathan Nadeau, Peter Snyder, Tommy Thomassin, and Maxime Turgeon-Rhéaume, effective immediately.
  • Group Insurance Committee: Jojy Oommen, vice-chair, effective June 10, 2013.
  • Committee on Volunteer Initiatives: Daisy Li, effective June 5, 2013.

For information only:

The following people have completed their mandates on the groups named below, and leave with thanks:

  • Research Committee: Marc-André Belzil, Chair, effective June 30, 2013.
  • Subcommittees of the Research Committee:
    • Individual Living Benefits Experience Subcommittee: Dominic Hains, Ian Jack, Alethea Lyn, and Charles Philbrook, effective May 10, 2013.
    • Individual Life Experience: Venessa Archibald, William Brath, Annie Girard, and Derek Houle, effective June 4, 2013. Jean-Pierre Cormier has resigned, effective February 28, 2013.
    • Pension Experience: Jean-Claude Ménard and Pierre Plamondon, effective June 4, 2013.
  • Editorial Committee: G. Brent Chambers, Faisal Siddiqi, Levente Tolnai, Raymond Tsang, and Eliza Wever, effective immediately.
  • Enterprise Risk Management Applications Committee: Sylvain Fortier and Altaf Rahim, effective immediately.

The creation of the Editorial Panel has been approved, along with its membership (Max Bazile, Stephen Cheng—ex officio, Brian Jenkins, Les Lohmann, Christopher McRae, Geoffrey Melbourne—Chair, Jean-François Poitras, Michael Promislow, Raymond Tsang, Nimmie Veerappen—Vice-chair, and Ai Lin Wong) and mandate:

The Editorial Panel will be responsible for oversight of all aspects of publishing the CIA electronic periodical, Seeing Beyond Risk. This will include, but will not be restricted to:

  • Establishing topics for the publication and authors;
  • Assembling a list of suitable business writers who can take on writing assignments;
  • Working with the CIA English Editor on topic refinement, review of manuscripts and approval of final documents; and
  • Review of feedback on the publication which could impact future issues.

Practice Council

Manuel Monteiro has been appointed Chair of the Committee on Pension Plan Financial Reporting, effective August 1, 2013.