Don Drummond


About Don Drummond - Speaker on the Economy and Policy Issues:

After a brilliant career as a senior federal finance official and bank chief economist, in which he has been a force in shaping and interpreting the modern Canadian economy, Don Drummond, the former senior federal civil servant and Chief Economist at the TD Bank, is now the Matthews Fellow and Visiting Scholar in the School of Policy Studies at Queen’s University.

Drummond has been present at the defining moments of recent Canadian economic history. As a key strategist in the Department of Finance in the 1990s, he helped tame the deficit and debt crises and set the country on the road to substantive tax reform.

He seamlessly shifted to the private sector, turning the position of Toronto-Dominion Bank’s chief economist into a critical piece of the bank’s marketing effort, basically reinventing the role of economist as media star. He had a front-row seat on the 2008 financial meltdown, which, despite pain for many people, was fascinating grist for an economist’s intellectual mill.

Indeed, as a finance mandarin, Don had helped create the conditions that allowed Canada to come through the disaster in better condition than almost any other industrial power.

During almost 23 years at the federal Depart of Finance, Mr. Drummond held a series of progressively more senior positions in the areas of economic analysis and forecasting, fiscal policy and tax policy. His last three positions were respectively, Assistant Deputy Minister of Fiscal Policy & Economic Analysis, Assistant Deputy Minister of Tax Policy & Legislation and most recently, Associate Deputy Minister.

In this latter position Mr. Drummond was responsible for economic analysis, fiscal policy, tax policy, social policy and federal-provincial relations. In particular, Mr. Drummond coordinated the planning of the annual federal budgets. Mr. Drummond travels widely, speaking to various groups about the economy and its prospects and he is frequently quoted by the media on economic and policy issues.

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What Don Drummond talks about:

The Economic Outlook for Financial and Insurance industries

The next few decades will see extraordinary change in the Canadian economy with many opportunities but also severe risks.  The Financial and Insurance sectors will be impacted by these changes – in the negative if the risks are not foreseen and addressed and in the positive if the opportunities are recognized and taken. 

For the first time since global discussions began in Rio three decades ago, most of the world finally seems ready to embark upon serious efforts to reduce global greenhouse emissions.  Carbon intensive industries will have to change profoundly or wither.  Firms and sectors that can deliver clean growth will seize new market opportunities. 

Investment portfolios, whether directly from the Finance and Insurance Sector or managed on behalf of clients, will need to be strategic in placing funds.  The risk profile of loan books will need to be carefully evaluated and managed. 

Climate action will not likely come soon enough or be sufficiently robust to avoid more and larger natural disasters with the potential for very large insurance claims.  The climate adjustments will need to take place in the context of extraordinary debt loads of all sectors – households, businesses and Governments. 

The debt loads present further risk to the economy, the Financial and Insurance sector, fintech, and investment portfolios and will need to cope with the need for monetary authorities to move closer to a neutral policy setting after more than a decade of extraordinary stimulus.   

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