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

Canadian Institute of Actuaries/Institut canadien des actuaires

December 2018
Elliott Bauer
D.W. Simpson & Company
Elliott Bauer
President's Update

 

By John Dark, FCIA
CIA President

It has been a busy time for the CIA, as we continue with phase 2 of the governance review, discuss our strategic planning process, and continue our work on the implementation of IFRS 17—now with a bit more time to put actuarial thought into the process.

IFRS 17

On November 14, the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) announced that it had voted to propose a one-year deferral of the effective date for IFRS 17 from on or after January 1, 2021, to on or after January 1, 2022.

You might recall that in October the CIA sent a letter to the IASB requesting a deferral of the implementation date. Several other organizations did the same. In fact, the IASB received 25 issues related to the IFRS 17 standard and intends to discuss these in the next few months, with a possibility of making some modifications to the standard.

Our message to members is that we must all continue to maintain the momentum and take full advantage of this one-year extension. Now is not the time to slow down on implementation. Don’t forget that our IFRS 17 blog (log in required) is an excellent resource: documents, links to important websites, and updates from the IFRS 17 Steering Committee to help you prepare for this important change.

Governance Phase 2

As we continue with planned governance changes, the Board reviewed and approved a revised proposal for phase 2 regarding the creation of the tentatively named Actuarial Profession Oversight Council (APOC), which was refined following the member consultation period in October.

A key change to the proposal is that the Board will remain accountable for initial education and qualification (approval of education syllabus, eligibility requirements, University Accreditation Program (UAP) requirements, etc.) while collaborating with the APOC and the new Professional Qualification Board (PQB) to uphold public interest in these areas.

Additionally, the PQB/APOC will now be accountable for the continuing professional development requirements existing members must follow. It will also oversee the process for disclosure of criminal convictions. The Committee on Professionalism currently oversees these two matters.

The Governance and Nominations Committee will now move ahead with updates to the Bylaws and other documents related to these changes, and will come back to the Board for formal approval at the March Board meeting. Members will be asked for a final decision around the time of the Annual Conference in June 2019.

We will share more details in the coming months.

Strategic Planning

As we reach the end of our current strategic plan’s lifespan, it’s time to look at what’s next for the CIA in 2020–2022 and beyond. The Board kicked off a review of the CIA’s current strategic plan, including which objectives have been completed and which are still outstanding. It’s clear that we have been extremely productive over the past several years, as most of our current priorities are finished or well underway.

Certainly this will be a long-term process, but to start the planning, we spent time looking at the Institute’s vision, mission, and values, and we brainstormed about what we think are some key elements of the CIA’s purpose and priorities. This initial work will feed into further discussions between now and June, when the Board will put in place a new strategic plan for the upcoming period.

News from Councils

Public Affairs Council (PAC) Chair Bernard Morency presented an update on the public statements process, noting that we have released 30 level 1 public statements in the past year. This is a huge increase over previous years, and shows that we’re doing a better job engaging in policy discussions and being proactive in sharing our voice with decision makers in both industry and the public sector.

The PAC also presented some refinements to the process of defining and producing a level 1 public statement, to help ensure efficient publishing and to make sure the CIA’s opinions and reputation are well presented across all our outputs. The Board was happy to agree to these refinements, and we are looking forward to even more visibility for the CIA coming from these improvements. If you have questions about this process, you can contact Sandra Caya, our associate director of communications and public affairs.

The Standards and Guidance Council (SGC) Chair, Faisal Siddiqi, shared that the council is busy with its many committees and subcommittees on key topics like IFRS 17 (for more, see the SGC Council update in this issue). Notably, they’re short on a few council members and expect to look for new members in the coming months. Watch the Volunteer Opportunities page on the website for new positions.

The relationship between the SGC and the Actuarial Standards Board (ASB) was discussed, with the SGC chair and vice-chair now attending ASB meetings and working to help populate designated groups. They are also working on building similar close relationships with the Practice Development Council and external regulators.

Actuarial Foundation of Canada

Created by the CIA Board in 2003, the Actuarial Foundation of Canada (AFC) supports youth education, financial literacy, and research initiatives that use actuarial skills in the public interest.

In the AFC annual report to the Board, Chair Paul Reaburn shared that recent donations totalling $125,000 have come in and will be used for research initiatives and sponsoring youth programs. In addition, the AFC has been actively recruiting new directors and developing new ways to increase corporate and individual donations.

I encourage you to read more about the AFC’s activities and consider how you or your organization might be able to offer support or direct donations.

Combination of SOA and CAS

You are probably aware that the proposed combination of the Society of Actuaries (SOA) and the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) has been called off. Both are valued CIA partners and provide significant benefit  to our education system. As this development unfolds we will watch it closely and will stay in close touch with both parties.

Looking towards a New Year

As 2018 draws to a close, I wish everyone all the best for the upcoming holiday season. Here’s to a prosperous and exciting new year!

John Dark, FCIA, is the President of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries.

 
In Focus

 

By Jacques Tremblay, FCIA

In my article last spring, I talked about a number of initiatives underway with the International Relations Council, now called the International Affairs Council (IAC). Reflecting on that article, it’s been a busy time. In fact, it’s been a busy few years on the international front. But rather than make this article a recap on progress, I’ll present the highlights of a few important issues and get straight to the heart of the matter . . . that is, the CIA’s involvement in international matters. It really does matter, and in fact, it makes a big difference.

IFRS 17

Of course, IFRS 17 is the hot topic on everyone’s mind, and I’d be remiss not to mention some of the great work going on. The IFRS 17 blog (log in required) is a central repository for information and resources to help members prepare for this significant change. I encourage you to use the IFRS 17 blog and also to make suggestions on how we can improve it. We expect the next ISAP 4 draft in early 2019 and the final standard by the end of 2019. The IAA plans to release related draft International Actuarial Notes (IANs) to the general population by the end of 2018. The CIA received a preliminary version of ISAP 4, available to members only on the IFRS 17 blog.

Enhancing the CIA’s International Strategy

The IAC continues to implement the CIA’s international strategy to enhance the Institute’s international presence through key strategic activities such as the following:

  • Actively participating in and providing valuable input to key International Actuarial Association (IAA) committees;
  • Supporting a strong IAA;
  • Developing mutually beneficial international relationships;
  • Maintaining a connection to members working internationally; and
  • Facilitating the international awareness and portability of the FCIA designation.

We surveyed our members who are living abroad to find out what more, if anything, the CIA can do to keep them engaged with the Institute. Over the next few months, we will look at specific initiatives to address the feedback we received.

Public Statements

The IAC also keeps quite busy assisting with public statements of an international nature. Here are a few recent ones:

And finally, an important part of our role is our relationship with the IAA and other actuarial organizations around the world. This is where my article gets passionate. For those of you who know me, you know how important this is to me.

International Actuarial Association – Is it Sustainable?

Our regular work involves ensuring a continued source of qualified CIA members for positions on IAA committees. We punch well above our weight, with an impressive contingent of representatives at biannual IAA meetings, and with committee and task force work happening throughout the year. We have an appointed International Ambassador, Micheline Dionne, who represents the CIA at council at every IAA meeting. Micheline is backed by our team, including our CIA delegates, CIA leadership, our Executive Director, and our director, education and international affairs. Incidentally, Micheline also sits on the IAA Executive Committee. We have members in other leadership roles on many committees, who are well respected for their work.

The other aspect of our work is monitoring key strategic issues, and there is one burning right now. And that, my friends, is the sustainability of the IAA. The cause is a current organizational restructuring proposal that has the potential to weaken the IAA’s strength on the international stage, particularly as a standard-setting organization . . . and that’s not good for the profession, and certainly not good for the CIA.

A Strong IAA Equals a Strong Profession Internationally

The CIA has been strongly advocating for a strong IAA as the only answer to the sustainability and brand of profession internationally, and we’ve been seeking support for our position from other actuarial organizations around the world.

At the IAA meetings in Mexico City in early December, we discussed some options. Early indications are that a large percentage of full member associations (FMAs) want to preserve the production/maintenance of standards at the IAA level. A vibrant and efficient IAA means a strong profession internationally, and thus greater opportunities for CIA members to be recognized for their knowledge and use of incredibly high standards of practice and professionalism. Let’s hope that we prevail!

Upcoming Challenges

Looking to 2019 and as far as June when my term as chair of the IAC will end, there are many challenges on the horizon. The CIA Board recently discussed potential priorities for the next strategic plan, and international issues remain at the forefront. Stay tuned for future developments!

Jacques Tremblay, FCIA, is Chair of the International Affairs Council.

 


By Faisal Siddiqi, FCIA

Background and Origin

The Standards and Guidance Council (SGC) was officially formed on September 1, 2018 following the phase 1 reorganization of the CIA’s governing structure. The responsibility of the SGC is twofold. We review educational notes prepared by the four largest practice committees:

  1. CLIFR: Committee on Life Insurance Financial Reporting;
  2. CRMCR: Committee on Risk Management and Capital Requirements;
  3. PCFRC: Committee on Property and Casualty Insurance Financial Reporting; and
  4. PPFRC: Committee on Pension Plan Financial Reporting.

The SGC also establishes designated groups (DGs) for the Actuarial Standards Board (ASB) when new CIA standards are being developed. These functions simplify the work of the SGC and help the ASB. Previously, the SGC was known as the Practice Council and had over 12 practice committees reporting to it. The other committees now report to the new Practice Development Council whose main focus is to help establish newer practice committees and provide a strategic eye for the CIA on new trends.

The following are the SGC’s members: Faisal Siddiqi (Chair), Steve Easson (Vice-chair), Marie Hélène-Malenfant (Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB), life insurance), Pierre-Paul Renaud (P&C), Dean Newell (pension, actuarial evidence (AE)), Eric Lemay (life insurance), and Stephen Cheng (group, pension, AE). We are supported by CIA staff member Josée Racette, who handles all the logistical, governance, and documentation preparation.

Since September 1, 2018, we have had one conference call and our annual face-to-face meeting in October 2018 in Toronto.

SGC Activities

Currently, CLIFR and the PCFRC are very busy with IFRS 17. CLIFR has established seven working groups and the PCFRC has established four. These working groups cover the following:

  • Probability-weighted cashflows;
  • Risk adjustment;
  • Discount rate setting;
  • Participating insurance;
  • Contractual service margin/coverage units;
  • Market-consistent valuation of financial guarantees/segregated funds; and
  • Embedded derivatives and investment components.

All of these working groups are preparing guidance notes to help life insurance actuaries and P&C actuaries with the implementation of IFRS 17. The SGC expects to receive these notes for review and commentary during late 2018 and throughout 2019 as they become ready for distribution.

Both CLIFR and the PCFRC released their fall letters (CLIFR, PCFRC) to provide year-end guidance.

The PPFRC is also working on a number of guidance notes related to pension funding risks, stochastic modelling, uses of letters of credit in going concern funding, and quarterly updates on annuity purchase rates. They are providing input on the upcoming changes to the commuted values standard and implementation of MI-2017 into the pension commuted values standard.

Committee on Risk Management and Capital Requirements

The recent achievements and current initiatives of the CRMCR are as follows:

  • Produced a Revised Educational Note on Regulatory Capital Filing Certification for Life Insurers.
  • Submitted a response to the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions’ (OSFI’s) public consultation on their discussion paper on reinsurance.
  • Prepared a response to OSFI on draft versions of the 2021 Life Insurance Capital Adequacy Test (LICAT) and Minimum Capital Test (MCT) Guidelines. Two working groups were established for life and P&C.
  • Preparing additional guidance for dynamic capital adequacy testing (DCAT) in 2019 for IFRS 17.
  • Preparing an educational note for the financial condition testing (FCT) (the new DCAT), to be released concurrently with the revised standards of practice.
  • Providing support on capital issues for IFRS 17.
  • Preparing a CRMCR update letter on initiatives in 2019 (could possibly include links to FCT/DCAT guidance, regulatory filing educational note, 2019 guideline and forms, and a list of useful articles relevant for own risk and solvency assessment (ORSA)/DCAT).
  • Preparing for sessions at future Seminars for the Appointed Actuary and the Annual Conference.

In terms of DGs, the SGC is working with the ASB to form three different ones related to the quinquennial review of part 3000 of the Standards of Practice. We look forward to working with the ASB in 2019.

If you have any questions related to the formation of the SGC or our activities, please do not hesitate to contact me at Faisal.Siddiqi@ca.ey.com or Steve Easson.

Faisal Siddiqi, FCIA, is Chair of the Standards and Guidance Council.

 
Actuaries on the Move

Career developments

Hélène Baril joined Willis Towers Watson in October as director for the Canadian insurance consulting and technology practice. During the same period, she was also awarded the 2018 SOA Presidential Award at the Society of Actuaries annual meeting in Nashville.

In October, Denis Belliard became vice-president client experience at Blue Cross Canassurance. He previously served as vice-president products.

CIA Past President James Christie started his term as President of the Casualty Actuarial Society in November.

Eric Duval became director of pricing and product management at Blue Cross Canassurance in August. He had been vice-president, actuarial, groups, associations and specialized products at L’Excellence Life Insurance.

Rheia Khalaf has taken on the role of director, collaborative research and partnerships, at the Université de Montréal where she is working towards building a new program on machine learning in quantitative finance and business analytics.

Willis Towers Watson recently named Jonathan Morin director of retirement risk solutions UK and Canada. He joined the firm in 2009 and was most recently a director in the retirement Canada line of business.

Haripaul Pannu is acting deputy superintendent of pensions at the Alberta Treasury Board’s Financial Sector Regulation and Policy (FSRP) division. He had been with FSRP for the past five years as the senior manager, risk management, and most recently as senior manager, pension policy.

Actuaries in the media

Gavin Benjamin, senior director of retirement at Willis Towers Watson, has published an article in Benefits Canada’s online magazine, concerning the CPP/QPP changes that will be gradually phased in as of January 2019.

Benefits and Pensions Monitor cited a study by Fraser Institute on how government employees do not pay the full cost of their defined benefit pensions that was co-authored by Malcolm Hamilton.

President and CEO of iA Financial Group, Denis Ricard, gave a thought-provoking conference presentation in Québec City in November regarding IFRS 17 and the importance of keeping a Canadian perspective on accounting standards.
___________________________________________________________________

Inform your peers about your achievements and progress by publicizing your new job, title, credentials, or other information.

Email Bonnie Robinson, the CIA’s English editor, and we will aim to include your item in the next (e)Bulletin issue.

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Public Affairs Corner

By Kelly Fry

The communications team at Head Office has been working with three single topic task forces (STTFs) to develop public statements on topics approved by the Board in late 2016. Each statement aims to highlight how actuaries can help with current issues affecting Canadians.

Retirement Age

Over the past 18 months, the STTF on retirement age has reviewed retirement age trends in Canada and around the globe.

A number of Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries have increased the age of eligibility for public pensions, and the American Academy of Actuaries has advocated for an increase in the US social security retirement age. In Canada, the entitlement age for Old Age Security has been a political issue, and additional benefits for working past age 65 have been added to the Canada Pension Plan/Québec Pension Plan. 

Most recently, members had the opportunity to provide comments on the draft public statement on retirement age that laid out recommendations for Canadian public pensions and tax-assisted retirement savings programs. The goal of this public statement is to encourage federal, provincial, and territorial governments to refresh their approach to helping Canadians achieve retirement income security.

A key part of this statement’s success relies on a targeted communications plan. The statement and its recommendations will be important to Canada’s legislators, and it will also provide a basis for all Canadians to discuss how a change to retirement age will affect them and their retirement planning.

Sandra Caya, CIA associate director of communications and public affairs, says “Canada’s population is living longer than ever before, and the policies that guide us on retirement ages may need to catch up to our country’s changing demographics and working lifestyles. We want the voice of Canada’s actuaries to help inform public thinking on this issue”.

More than 40 members submitted individual and group responses during the consultation. The task force is carefully reviewing all comments and expects to have a final statement ready to publish early in 2019.

Climate Change

The uncertainty of our changing climate and its impact on Canadians is a growing concern. How can actuaries help? This statement’s STTF, drawn from the Climate Change and Sustainability Committee, has identified a number of ways that actuaries can engage with policymakers to help identify and plan for climate-related risks in their decision making.

The STTF is putting final touches on its draft, which we expect to circulate for member feedback in early 2019.

Risk Classification

This statement was conceptualized as an opportunity to build public awareness, dispelling myths around insurance, risk classification, and fairness. Everyone has a different risk profile, yet there is a perception that the system to assess these risks is not fair.

The STTF for this public statement is now working with Head Office on a plan for presenting this information in a clear and visual way—with the goal of not only informing Canadians about how risk is assessed, but also to ensure that decision makers have the right information at hand on this topic. Members can expect more from this task force later in 2019.

Along with getting these public statements underway, the communications team worked on over 30 public submissions and statements going out to industry regulators and consultation processes over the past 12 months. We are looking ahead to a 2019 full of innovation and updates to our overall communications activities and outputs.

Thank you for your support, and happy holidays from the communications team!

Kelly Fry is manager, marketing at the CIA.

 
Hannover Re (Ireland) DAC Canadian Life Branch
Lush Life Travel - an independent affiliate of Vision Travel
RGA Canada
Committee Profile

 

The implementation of IFRS 17 will have a significant impact on the valuation of insurance contracts. Coordination among the various CIA entities is paramount to ensure proper management and implementation of the necessary changes related to IFRS 17 in Canada. The IFRS 17 Steering Committee coordinates these efforts and updates members frequently about IFRS 17. Read the committee’s full mandate.

Change to the IFRS 17 Effective Date

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) met on November 14, 2018 to discuss concerns expressed by various parties (including the CIA) about the substance, timing, and transitional requirements under IFRS 17. Following that meeting, the IASB announced that it had voted to propose a one-year deferral of the effective date for IFRS 17 from on or after January 1, 2021, to on or after January 1, 2022, pending a public consultation.

While the potential for the standard to change adds to the uncertainty faced by actuaries in Canada, the Committee on Life Insurance Financial Reporting (CLIFR), the Committee on Property and Casualty Insurance Financial Reporting (PCFRC), and other CIA committees continue their work to develop timely Canadian guidance based on the current version of the standard. We strongly encourage members to maintain the momentum and take full advantage of this one-year extension.  

IFRS 17 Guidance and Education

The IFRS 17 blog (log in required) is an excellent resource for members looking to stay current with efforts to implement the standard. Here are some of the most recent posts to the blog:

Contact Us

As always, we would love to hear from you. Please send your comments to ifrs17@cia-ica.ca.

Cynthia Potts and Les Rehbeli, Co-chairs, IFRS 17 Steering Committee.

 
Institute News

By Bill Young, FCIA

The holidays are just around the corner. For many, December is synonymous with fun-filled preparations, shopping in packed malls and going out for dinner and drinks with friends and family. It can all get pretty hectic! But it is also a time of the year when we are approached by dedicated volunteers working for food banks and a slew of other charities. It’s not always easy to choose which organizations to donate to, and so we often opt for causes that are near and dear to our hearts.

This year, we invite you to give to the Institute’s registered charity: the Actuarial Foundation of Canada (AFC). The Foundation, run entirely by volunteers, seeks to promote awareness of mathematics and financial literacy by supporting programs across the country. One such example: since 2010, the Foundation has been sponsoring the Junior Achievements (JA) program, which offers grade 7 and 8 students daylong workshops to enhance their knowledge of financial matters. The Foundation also supports, in cooperation with the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences (PIMS), mathematics training for teachers working with vulnerable indigenous children.


Teacher training sponsored by the AFC. 

Donations made in 2018 will ensure the continuity of these and other programs, as well as funding new initiatives to be introduced in 2019. Indeed, the Foundation would like to broaden the scope of its efforts to meet the rising demand for support in recent years.  

These outstanding programs would not be possible without the assistance of donors like you. By giving to the Foundation, you’re doing a lot more than supporting its mission: you’re sharing your passion for mathematics with the next generation, while at the same time raising the profile of the actuarial profession.

Give today and help meet all these goals.

Bill Young, FCIA, is a director on the AFC Board.

 

More information on the foundation:

Interview with Ellen Whelan, Vice-chair of the AFC board (September 2018)
Foundation pamphlet

 

By Joseph Gabriel, FCIA

Late October marked my fifth anniversary with the CIA as staff actuary, education. It has been a productive time with many rewarding milestones, as well as a good many more envisioned for the future. The CIA University Accreditation Program (UAP) was implemented in universities in 2012; therefore, having been at the centre of its administration and operation for most of its existence, I am thrilled to report on the program’s first six years.

Background

The UAP currently enables candidates to earn up to four Associate-level exam (FM/2, IFM/3F, LTAM, and STAM) credits toward ACIA and FCIA qualification through accredited university education, subject to meeting the minimum grades established by the CIA. For more details on the UAP, refer to this excellent article by Alicia Rollo, CIA director, education and international affairs.

Worldwide, renowned organizations such as the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (UK), the Actuaries Institute (Australia), and the Actuarial Society of South Africa use university accreditation for the achievement of actuarial credentials. The CIA has mutual recognition agreements with all three organizations.

In the United States, UAP is recognized as follows:

  • By the Casualty Actuarial Society toward ACAS and FCAS designations; and
  • By the American Academy of Actuaries toward the MAAA designation.

Although the Society of Actuaries (SOA) does not recognize UAP credits toward ASA and FSA designations, candidates may use UAP credits to meet the minimum requirements to apply for Validation by Educational Experience (VEE) credits. More importantly, through the memorandum of understanding between the CIA and SOA, candidates are guaranteed to be able to progress seamlessly through the SOA educational system with UAP credits and register for any SOA educational activity recognized by the CIA, including eligibility to attend the SOA Fellowship Admissions Course (FAC), which also forms part of the CIA requirements.

Some Numbers on UAP

In October 2015, I wrote an article on data collection and analysis on the UAP. These data enable the CIA to closely assess the program, to ensure that it delivers on the CIA’s objectives of rigour and thoroughness. They also track the utilization of UAP by candidates. With six years of data, I am able to report on how the UAP is now producing successful Associates (ACIA) and Fellows (FCIA) of the Institute.

Utilization since inception:

  • 740 exam credits granted to 476 candidates;
  • 47 candidates qualified as ACIA with at least one UAP credit; and
  • 13 candidates qualified as FCIA with at least one UAP credit.

With accredited courses being closely aligned with the CIA syllabus, current data show that UAP candidates are successful on Fellowship exams and other educational activities, regardless of how they obtained their preliminary education. As a brief reminder, in addition to achieving UAP credits, all candidates must successfully complete all other CIA eligibility requirements including preliminary examinations, courses and modules for which no UAP credit is offered, and the CIA Professionalism Workshop. Fellowship then requires the same educational elements required of non-UAP candidates including Fellowship examinations, courses and modules, the CIA Practice Education Course, and of course, the CIA’s professional and Canadian experience requirements.  

Expansion of the UAP Syllabus in Fall 2019

Based on the demonstrated effectiveness and thoroughness of UAP to date, we entered into discussions with all 11 accredited universities to gauge the possibility of expanding the UAP offering. The UAP Subcommittee of the Eligibility and Education Council (EEC) then proposed the inclusion of credit for the probability Exam (P/1) and the SOA Statistics for Risk Modeling (SRM) exam. For Exam P, in keeping with the normal UAP assessment process with universities, we conducted rigorous analysis of syllabus coverage, historical university course offerings, grade distributions, and university course outlines, and universities performed a mapping exercise to the CIA syllabus. A similar process is now underway with Exam SRM.

Subject to meeting the conditions set out in the revised UAP policy, accredited universities will have the option to have courses accredited for the coverage of either or both exams in fall 2019. However, universities must continue to cover all four existing exams to remain accredited.

CIA Board Approval and CAS Recognition

The CIA Board approved the changes to the UAP policy on November 21, and the CAS confirmed that it will recognize UAP credits for Exam P/1 toward ACAS and FCAS designations.

Having CAS support of the UAP continues to play a pivotal role with the program’s recognition by students, employers, and CIA members. The CIA is proud of achieving such acceptance of the UAP and will work relentlessly to uphold it.

A Bright Future

With increasing utilization every year, candidates successfully achieving ACIA and FCIA, and expansion of the program, the future is bright for the UAP. The CIA Board also recently received plans for the UAP measures-of-success program. Please watch for more reporting, both quantitative and qualitative, coming in 2019.  

This quote from Irish playwright, poet, and author Oscar Wilde, in my opinion, says it all: “Success is a science; if you have the conditions, you get the result”.

Joseph Gabriel, FCIA, is staff actuary, education.

 

By Maryanne Bright

Having emerged as 2018’s most valuable university major, with a projected job growth rate of 22 percent by 2026 (according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics), it is no surprise that more and more students are choosing the rewarding, albeit challenging, career of actuary.

As proud supporters of the profession, seeing the growth and enthusiasm that surrounds the study of actuarial science inspires the CIA’s commitment to promoting the practice and its opportunities. Recognizing that the journey towards actuary starts young, actively engaging with students and graduates is an important part of the CIA’s mandate.

This year alone the CIA has participated in and facilitated several events and campaigns targeting Canada’s #FutureActuaries. In addition to our CIA-ASNA summer event in Montréal, we have visited universities, and reached out to high school students.  

#AskanActuary University Tour

#AskanActuary is the CIA’s annual two-month, multi-city tour visiting accredited and non-accredited universities across Canada to promote the actuarial profession to students and faculty.

Over 350 students attended the Q&A sessions with CIA staff actuaries Joseph Gabriel and Chris Fievoli to learn more about the profession, its challenges, and pathways for success.

“We experienced tremendous participation by students through significant attendance and numerous relevant questions,” says Joseph Gabriel, staff actuary, education. “It remains a pleasure and a privilege to meet the future of the profession.”


#AskanActuary at Concordia.

 


#AskanActuary at Laval.

Glenforest STEM Conference

The annual Glenforest STEM conference, held November 13 in Toronto, supports the advancement of students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Chris Fievoli, staff actuary, communications and public affairs, staffed the CIA booth, answering questions from high school students keen to know more about the profession.

“In the course of exposing students to the STEM topics, it’s important to ensure they know about actuarial science,” he says. “Our fear is that a lot of students who want to pursue a career in a math-related field—particularly those coming from outside major financial centres—will not know this is an option.”

http://www.naylornetwork.com/cia-nwl/assets/glenforest.jpg
Glenforest STEM Conference.

Advertising

Canadian School Counsellor magazine is a national publication with bilingual trending content, geared towards high school guidance counsellors. Part of our strategy of reaching high school students is through guidance counsellors, who advise students and help them make informed career choices. We run three ads a year in the magazine.

Coming Up: 2019 ASNA “Actuary of the Future” Convention

Sponsored in part by the CIA, the Actuarial Students’ National Association (ANÉA–ASNA) Convention is the largest gathering of actuarial students, professionals, and academics in North America.

On January 18­–20, 2019 some of the industry’s best and brightest will be in Montréal for “Actuary of the Future”. Students will meet potential employers, connect with peers, and gain valuable professional insights.

Learn more about ASNA’s work at anea-asna.ca.

A Strong Career Partner

As more millennials and Gen Zs take an active interest in pursuing a degree or career in actuarial science, the CIA will be there as their career partner. From providing resources that support the development from student to actuary, to ensuring their questions are always answered, we know investing in students is an investment in the future.

Maryanne Bright is the CIA’s marketing content writer.

 

By Maryanne Bright

Lifelong learning and continuing professional development (CPD) are essential to your growth and success as an actuary, which is why the CIA is committed to providing relevant education and training opportunities to enhance knowledge and build expertise.

Through meetings, seminars, and webcasts, on topics ranging from professionalism to industry and practice-specific topics, CPD improves knowledge and awareness of changes in the profession, as well as ensuring member work continues to meet the highest quality standards. CPD is a powerful tool in serving public interest, a guiding principle of the CIA.

Did you know that all CIA Affiliates, Associates, and Fellows (unless otherwise exempt) must complete 100 hours of CPD every two years? 

Don’t forget the deadline to complete your 2017–2018 CPD requirements is December 31, 2018, and your filing deadline is February 28, 2019.

If you’re a little short on hours, take advantage of the free CPD opportunities on the CIA website.

Planning Ahead

Kick-start your CPD in 2019, by attending these great opportunities:

Pension and Investment Seminar (French) 
February 13, 2019 in Montréal

Open to all, this one-day event provides an update on current market trends, the impact of climate change on industry, and a look at what increasing retirement age means for pension fund providers.

CIA Professionalism Workshop
February 14, 2019 (French) in Montréal

February 15, 2019 (English) in Toronto

Meet ACIA requirements or use the workshop to refresh your professionalism CPD by attending a CIA professionalism workshop. The one-day session includes the following:

  • Who is a professional and what does professionalism mean?
  • The structure of the CIA;
  • The CIA's views on professionalism;
  • The CIA's discipline process;
  • Malpractice and legal liability; and
  • Communications.

Predictive Analytics Seminar
February 27, 2019 in Toronto

Increase your knowledge of predictive analytics and how it relates to your work as an actuary.

The world is becoming increasingly dependent on the application of predictive analytics to reduce risk and optimize process. Explore discussions on privacy and bias, predictive modelling pitfalls, advances in the use of cyber-risk modelling, and more at the joint CIA, Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) Institute, and Society of Actuaries (SOA) 2019 Predictive Analytics Seminar.

Annual Conference 2019

The flagship event for the CIA shifts from a meeting to a conference in 2019. What does that mean for attendees? An opportunity to receive great content through a variety of presentation styles and to connect with peers.

Help shape the upcoming annual conference program and provide your CPD topic ideas or a proposal to speak by completing this survey by December 14, 2018.

Stay tuned for more details when we launch registration in February. You won’t want to miss Annual Conference 2019!

Maryanne Bright is the CIA’s marketing content writer.

 

By Bonnie Robinson

On November 20, President John Dark, Immediate Past President Sharon Giffen, Actuarial Standards Board (ASB) Vice-chair Josephine Marks, and directors from the CIA Head Office met with delegates from Indonesia to discuss the status and future of the actuarial profession.

Representatives from the Indonesian Financial Services Authority, the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Indonesia, the country’s actuarial society, Persatuan Aktuaris Indonesia (PAI), and the University of Waterloo, made up the visiting delegation. Their key objectives for the visit were the following:

  • A deeper understanding of the role and contribution of actuaries to the integrity of the financial sector;
  • Enhanced understanding of the means to ensure the quality of actuarial education and continuing professional development; and
  • Discussion of best practices for governance of the profession by acquiring a better understanding of the processes in place in Canada and in the global context.

Developing the Actuarial Profession in Indonesia

A member of the G-20, Indonesia is the largest economy in Southeast Asia. To sustain its economic growth, Indonesia needs to develop ever more sophisticated and durable insurance, financial, and complementary infrastructure; a task that requires a robust, home-grown actuarial community. As detailed in a September 2017 (e)Bulletin article, Actuaries on the World Stage: Indonesia, building and sustaining the actuarial profession in emerging economies is a significant challenge.

READI Project

Bill Duggan, field director with the READI Project (Risk Management, Economic Sustainability and Actuarial Science Development in Indonesia), provided an overview of the project.   

Launched in 2015, READI is a cooperative effort among the University of Waterloo, Global Affairs Canada, and organizations in Indonesia, including the government, with some funding from Manulife Indonesia and Sun Life Indonesia.

READI’s primary goal is to help develop Indonesia as a centre of actuarial excellence. It does this through a number of initiatives, such as increasing awareness of the actuarial profession among students in Indonesia, educational support for Indonesian actuarial students, undergraduate scholarships, and research support. It also works with industry associations like the PAI, Indonesian life and general insurance associations, and financial services associations.

The project estimates that it has reached 50,000 people, including students, teachers, and parents. They have had good success with universities, where actuarial science now has the highest ratio of applicants to seats in any discipline.

PAI Overview

Senior representatives of the PAI were part of the delegation, including the organization’s executive director, Giovani Gracianti. The PAI has 280 Fellows, mostly educated through their own exams. A member of the IAA since 2007, the PAI follows the IAA education syllabus. Ms. Gracianti explained that part of the challenge they face is managing these resources and also the issue that many of the original PAI members have lower educational levels than more recent candidates. The consulting part of the profession is very small in the country; there is not yet a large enough pool of actuaries who can fill this gap.

A Robust Discussion

Some of the topics the group discussed included how to encourage Associates to become Fellows, how to retain candidates, particularly women, in the education system, and how to promote the role of the Appointed Actuary among employers. The Indonesian delegation were particularly interested in how the CIA manages continuing professional development (CPD), and how our Actuarial Standards Board (ASB) works. They asked questions about the self-governance process for the supervision of actuaries, the contribution of actuaries to implementing the rules and standards that protect the public interest and the integrity of the financial sector, as well as the factors that have contributed to the growth and recognition of the actuarial profession in Canada.

Fostering a Strong Relationship

The CIA plans to continue working with members of the delegation to help with the ongoing development of Indonesia’s actuarial profession. Information about our University Accreditation Program, our code of conduct for candidates in the CIA education system, and how our criminal conviction/discipline processes work, are just three areas for which we will provide more detail.

This type of outreach and knowledge sharing strengthens the international actuarial profession, and has the potential to help create the infrastructure that supports financial security around the globe. 

Bonnie Robinson is the CIA’s English editor.

 

Former CIA president Charles T.P. Galloway passed away in Toronto on November 15. He was 91.

Mr. Galloway graduated from the University of Toronto with a BA in the maths and physics program. He started work as an actuary with the National Life Assurance Company, and was promoted to chief actuary after completing all of his actuarial exams. He served as vice-president of the company before being promoted to president of National Life in 1977 at age 50. He served in this position for 10 years before he retired and sat on the boards of National Life and other insurance companies.

CIA President from 1980–1981, Mr. Galloway also volunteered with the Professional Conduct Committee (1983–87) and the Committee on Qualifications and Conduct (1974–79). In 2015, he received a silver volunteer award.

Mr. Galloway also contributed to Our history. Our achievements., the CIA’s oral history book, published as part of the Institute’s 50th anniversary in 2015. Recollecting his time as president, Mr. Galloway noted that CIA members at the time tended to vote for candidates who were CEOs or presidents of their companies. He himself had just become president of National Life.

I was stretched pretty thin trying to get adjusted to my new job and be President of the CIA, and I’d never served on the Council. One of the things I passed on was, “Don’t elect CEOs; elect guys that have been on the Council who know what goes on. You’ll have a much easier time of doing the job of President.” That’s exactly what they did. I wasn’t sure whether they were taking my advice or whether they thought I did such a terrible job that they better change what they did. At any rate, it did change.

He also recalled the beginning of his career, in 1946, when he received a letter from a life insurer offering a summer job:

Afterwards, I told my father that anybody that goes to work for a life insurance company is nuts. I think I did automatic premium loans all summer. Everything was done by hand: working out the interest and making sure the cash value would cover the loan, and then terminating a policy if it wouldn’t. It was a terrible job. However, it got better.

Charles T.P. Galloway obituary

 

Donald McIsaac passed away on October 28, just shy of his 77th birthday. A graduate of St. Francis Xavier University (BA), Mr. McIsaac worked as a director for the former Canadian Department of Insurance and at the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI). He also worked at the World Bank in Washington, DC.

Mr. McIsaac volunteered extensively with the CIA, including on the Committee on Life Insurance Financial Reporting (1973–1980), the IAA Supranational Relations Committee (1999–2003), and as Vice-president of the Council (1990–1991), as the Board was then known.

Donald McIsaac obituary

 
Events News

By Maryanne Bright

On November 6, the CIA hosted its Pension and Investment Seminar—welcoming pension and investment professionals to Toronto for a one-day, session-focused exploration of current trends and challenges.

Led by industry experts, the interactive seminar featured five continuing professional development (CPD) sessions geared toward enhancing pension and investment knowledge, managing risk and market volatility, as well as identifying best practices in the management of consumer assets and liabilities.

Highlights from the day include the following:

  • Discussion and review of Québec and Ontario’s new pension funding rules, and the differences between them in the consideration of asset duration and derivatives. Key takeaways were that the reforms have an impact on investment decisions, creating opportunities to optimize asset mixes, and that stakeholders must balance long-term strategy and short-term funding rules, which may not always go hand in hand.
  • Overview of the impact of longevity from a pension accounting perspective. Speakers advised exercising judgment in determining a best estimate of the mortality improvement assumption, taking into account available data and research, specific demographic characteristics of plan membership, and plan experience.
  • Examination of the potential impact of climate change on consumers and how to accurately reflect this in actuarial assumptions and related disclosure of pension plans. An interesting reference was made to Bank of England governor Mark Carney’s 2015 statement that climate change is a tragedy of the horizon: “We don’t need an army of actuaries to tell us that the catastrophic impacts of climate change will be felt beyond the traditional horizons of most actors – imposing a cost on future generations that the current generation has no direct incentive to fix”.
  • An in-depth case study looking at the 2008 economic crisis, insightful takeaways, and strategies to mitigate future financial risk. CIBC deputy chief economist Benjamin Tal shared thought-provoking perspectives on the US economy, and concerns that while indicators show growth in GDP and employment, deficits are reaching unprecedented levels.

Cutting-Edge Perspectives

“All speakers brought forward cutting-edge and current perspectives, along with documented and researched content,” says Joseph Gabriel, CIA staff actuary, education, who attended the seminar. “Participants were exposed to high-quality sessions, and will benefit from the knowledge shared by industry experts.”

While primarily an opportunity to gain valuable professional development training, the interactive learning format also allowed attendees to exchange new ideas with peers.

Don’t miss out on the informative and skill-building seminars and workshops provided by the CIA.

Maryanne Bright is the CIA’s marketing content writer.

 
Research Hub

Developing research material is one of the CIA’s fundamental activities. Thought-provoking and leading-edge research helps expand the boundaries of the profession, advances knowledge on emerging issues, lines of business, and practice areas, and aligns with the Institute’s strategic priorities. CIA research provides a unique Canadian perspective, in both official languages.

Recent Research Publications

Since the last Research Hub article in June 2018, the Research Council (REC) has published six research reports and papers. Several additional projects will be finalized over the next few months. For more information on the research currently underway at the CIA, visit the Research Projects page on the website.

Incorporation of Flood and Other Catastrophe Model Results into Pricing and Underwriting

This report is prepared to assist in developing recommendations for pricing methodologies and underwriting approaches that incorporate the use of catastrophe model results. This research follows on the recent emergence of water damage claims and climate-related perils as the largest claims costs facing property insurers in Canada. With the upwards trend in water damage claims, Canadian insurance companies have responded with the development and introduction to the market of property protection flood endorsement policies.

Appointed Actuary Survey of C-1 Practices and Provisions of Life and Health Insurance Organizations in Canada – 2016 Fiscal Year-End

This report (log in required) documents the results of the survey of C-1 practices and provisions for life and health insurance organizations in Canada, as at fiscal year-end (FYE) 2016. This research provides the CIA and its members with knowledge of current actuarial practices in Canada. Using the collected data, actuaries can ascertain their organization’s position within the range of Canadian actuarial practices.

Canadian Standard Ordinary Life Experience 2015–2016 Using 86–92 and 97–04 Tables

This report of the intercompany mortality experience for Canadian standard ordinary life insurance policies covers the one-year period between policy anniversaries in 2015 and 2016 on an age-nearest-birthday basis. This report presents the high-level findings of the 2015–2016 mortality study based on the CIA 86–92 and CIA 97–04 expected bases.

11th Survey of Emerging Risks (long version)

This report highlights the outsized role of cyber risks, along with an improving global economic outlook and upward trending geopolitical risks. These key findings emphasize a need for enterprise risk management (ERM) to adjust along with the risks themselves.

Canadian Segregated Funds Product Experience Study

This report represents the first industry study of Canadian segregated funds product policyholder behaviour and mortality experience that materially impact the cost of guaranteed death, maturity, and withdrawal benefits provided by segregated funds products. This study provides insurers with recent experience data for Canadian segregated funds products regarding full surrenders, partial withdrawals, guaranteed withdrawal benefit utilization, and mortality.

Member Papers

In recent months, we published one paper drafted by a CIA member.

A Practical Approach to Establishing Margins for Adverse Deviation in Going Concern Funding Valuations

CIA member Chun-Ming (George) Ma drafted this paper, which proposes an alternative design for a provision for adverse deviations (PfAD) through the development of a margin for incorporation in the going concern discount rate.  

Volunteer

To get involved with the REC, or a REC committee or project oversight group (POG), please contact Shlomit Jacobson, manager, research. Make sure to indicate your interest in participating in research work through the My Volunteer Profile (log in required) section of the member website.

Share Your Research Ideas

The CIA seeks member input to identify topics of interest related to four focus areas selected for further research and study in the coming year. Visit the website to learn more about these focus areas and submit your research ideas.

 
Social Media and the CIA

By Maryanne Bright

While the days of print are far from over, more and more businesses and organizations are recognizing the value of incorporating non-traditional methods of communication into their marketing outreach efforts.

Social media and other platforms to engage with audiences have transformed the way we communicate—from emojis and memes to a 24/7 streaming model of ever-new and exciting content.

This inundation of information has changed how we respond to messages, forcing businesses to think more strategically about innovative ways to interact with members and the public.

For an organization committed to providing the latest updates regarding the actuarial profession, using social media as a tool to inform, educate, and promote the practice is invaluable. It also doesn’t hurt that the use of popular platforms, such as Twitter and LinkedIn, has helped increase the CIA’s organizational and brand visibility while also building a stronger presence online.

But don’t just take our word for it, here’s what the numbers say (as of November 28):

Why Social Media and Why Now?

Social media is a forum for exchange primarily centred around sharing personal opinions and unfortunately at times, misinformation. The CIA and actuaries can lend their voice to important conversations and issues by providing an unbiased, research-informed viewpoint.

Here are our top three reasons to get involved and join the conversation:

Stay Connected

Social media is a remarkable tool that, when used effectively, can expand your professional networks and help you stay connected. Platforms like LinkedIn enable users to keep their finger on the industry pulse in a format that encourages meaningful engagement and peer exchange.

Stay Informed

Twitter is a user-friendly platform that allows you to keep up with the latest news as it happens. You’re only a quick search away from discovering the trending topics of the day, popular articles, and insightful peer commentary.

Stay Relevant

With social media here to stay, the best way to get more out of the technology is to focus on having conversations. As actuaries whose job it is to serve the public interest, lending an educated and objective voice to important issues can be a small action with a big impact.

Let’s Chat

Want to connect with an energetic network of peers, share knowledge, and engage with new perspectives? Be part of our growing online community by following us on Twitter or LinkedIn.

It’s time to get talking—as actuaries, your active participation can go a long way not only to promote the Institution but also the profession and its practitioners. 

Maryanne Bright is the CIA’s marketing content writer.

 
Volunteers on the Move

Board

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

  • Research Council: François Cloutier (Vice-chair, liaisons) and Jill Knudsen (Vice-chair of communications), effective immediately; and
  • Practice Development Council: Claude Ferguson and Joel Li, effective immediately.

The following people have been appointed to the new advisory groups, under the Governance and Nominations Committee, named below:

  • Volunteer Management and Development Advisory Group: Ying (Daisy) Li (volunteer lead), Claire Bilodeau, Stephen Cheng, Elaine Lajeunesse, Denise Lang, Harry Li, Robert Stapleford, and Carolyn Yearwood, effective immediately;
  • New Members Advisory Group: Joseph Kazibwe (volunteer lead), Ayman Alvi, Dominik Lemieux-Briault, Jeremy Li Foa Wing, Winnie Luong, Michael McDermid, Shannon Patershuk, Mbabi Tema (ASNA liaison), and Mark Whidden, effective immediately; and
  • Seeing Beyond Risk Advisory Group: Jean-François Poitras (volunteer lead), Manisha Dias, Sophie Feng, Jing Lang, Shannon Patershuk, Elena Rhodes, Khalid Sadequin, Raymond Chiu Hoi C. Tsang, George Wang, and Ai Lin Wong, effective immediately.

Mandates for these advisory groups are available on the website:

The following committees were formally disbanded with thanks:

  • Volunteer Management and Development Committee;
  • New Members Committee;
  • Editorial Panel; and
  • Editorial Committee.

The following people have completed their term with the councils named below, and leave with thanks:

  • Practice Development Council: Véronique Ménard and Anne St-Martin; and
  • Eligibility and Education Council: Rémi Villeneuve.

Standards and Guidance Council

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

  • Committee on Property and Casualty Insurance Financial Reporting: Claudette Cantin and Richard Xu (observer), effective September 6; and
  • Committee on Risk Management and Capital Requirements: Marc-André Harvey (Vice-chair, life), effective September 14, 2018.

The following people have completed their term with the committees named below, and leave with thanks:

  • Committee on Property and Casualty Insurance Financial Reporting: Anna-Marie Beaton, Anne Marie Klein-Lee, Nathalie Lavigne, and David Lim, effective September 6; and
  • Chartered Enterprise Risk Actuary (CERA) board: Minaz Lalani (representative—CIA is no longer a CERA award signatory).

Mandates for the following working groups were approved and are available on the website:

Eligibility and Education Council

The following people have been appointed to the committees and subcommittees named below:

  • Continuing Education Committee: Patrick Charbonneau, effective immediately;
    • Reinsurance Subcommittee: Patrick Charbonneau (Chair), effective immediately; and
    • Enterprise Risk Management Subcommittee: Harry Li and Tracy Shu, effective immediately.

The following committees and subcommittees have been disbanded with thanks:

  • Education Committee;
  • Examinations and Assessments Committee;
  • Group Benefits Examination Subcommittee;
  • ACIA Syllabus Subcommittee; and
  • FCIA Syllabus Practice Subcommittee.

The following people have completed their term with the subcommittees named below, and leave with thanks:

  • Continuing Education Committee:
    • Reinsurance Subcommittee: Stephanie Banfield (Chair), effective immediately;
    • Pension Subcommittee: François Bourdon, effective immediately; and
    • Enterprise Risk Management Subcommittee: Xiangxiao Ma, effective immediately.

The creation of the following committee, subcommittee, and task force has been approved:

  • Education and Assessments Committee:
    • Group Benefits Exam Task Force: Erin Crump, Bruno Gagnon, Edward Kuo, and Elisabeth Lamarche.
    • Curriculum and Exam Representatives Subcommittee: Michael Ah-Fat, Andrew Gillies, Jared Mickall, Sarah Reynolds, Kwame Smart, Darren Thompson, and George Wang.

Research Council

The following person has been appointed to the committee named below:

  • Academic Research Committee: Sheldon Lin (Vice-chair).

The following people have completed their term with the committee named below, and leave with thanks:

  • Experience Research Committee: Chris Piper and Stefan Ramonat.

Mandates for the following committees were approved and are available on the website:

 
Head Office Update


Sue Alcott

The CIA recently had the pleasure of welcoming Sue Alcott to its Head Office team. Sue takes on the manager of volunteer services role—a new position created to better support our volunteers. She leads our dedicated volunteer team, Eric Mastropietro and Carmelina Santamaria, and works with committee chairs to ensure volunteers have the support they need to meet our strategic and operational needs.

Extensive Experience with Volunteers

Sue has significant experience working with volunteers. Shortly after earning her diploma in social services, she began working as assistant manager of shelter services at Shepherds of Good Hope, a renowned charity in Ottawa that supports the homeless. Later, the organization asked her to take on volunteer services and provide direction to a large team of 450 volunteers as well as over 200 corporate and community groups of volunteers. She worked in this very demanding environment for 11 years, managing to keep her infectious laughter.

What kept her going? The tremendous energy volunteers have to make our world a better place. “It’s incredible to see the impact volunteering has on society. Volunteers just have so much motivation,” she explains before pointing out half-jokingly, “what kind of people just give up their time for the greater good?”

Undoubtedly, she will find no shortage of energy at the CIA, where volunteers put in countless hours, year in and year out, to better serve the profession and the public. “Actuaries play a very key role in financial stability in Canada and that’s something I can get behind,” she says about her new work environment.

Reaching Out to Our Members

Over the last month, Sue has valued the opportunity to be an objective observer and listen to feedback from volunteers. “We have a fresh opportunity to pull together the pieces and continue building on the strong foundation of the program,” she says. She also aims to lift barriers and make volunteering smoother. She is already implementing clearer processes and access to accurate information. “We need to make volunteering as easy as possible so that members can focus on volunteering their specific skills,” she explains. She has already started to contact volunteers and is taking the time to develop strong relationships.

If you’re a committee chair or an aspiring volunteer and Sue hasn’t called you yet, consider reaching out to her!

 

The CIA Head Office will be closed December 24 to January 1. The office will reopen on January 2, 2019. We wish all of our members a happy holiday.