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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Nuclear Weapon Financiers: Dirty Money, Dirty Bombs

Here's a post that I'd like to pass on regarding the Canadian financing of nuclear weapons.

The report shows that 10 Canadian financial institutions are substantively involved in the financing of nuclear weapons producers: the Bank of Montreal, CIBC, Gryphon International, Manulife Financial, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, the Power Corporation of Canada, the Royal Bank of Canada, Scotiabank, Sun Life Financial and Toronto-Dominion Bank.
Each was found to own a significant portion of the shares and bonds of nuclear weapons producers or to have provided them with loans or participated in their share or bond issues between July 2008 and December 2011. Canadian involvement in the financing of nuclear weapons producers is greater than that of most other non-nuclear-weapon states.
Bank of Montreal has loaned more than US$100 million to General Dynamics in recent years, and participated in one of its recent bond issues. General Dynamics manufactures US nuclear-armed submarines and ballistic missiles.
CIBC owns bonds worth US$350,000 in Serco Group, which has a one-third stake in the British Atomic Weapons Establishment, where the country’s nuclear warheads are designed and manufactured.
Gryphon International owns US$40 million worth of shares in Serco Group.
Manulife Financial’s subsidiary John Hancock owns bonds worth US$68 million in BAE Systems, a producer of British and French nuclear weapons); bonds worth US$103 million in Boeing, a producer of US nuclear missiles; and bonds worth US$38 million in EADS, a producer of French nuclear missiles.
Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan owns US$93 million worth of shares in BAE Systems.
Power Corporation of Canada’s subsidiary Putnam owns US$7 million worth of bonds in Alliant Techsystems and US$214 million worth of shares in Northrop Grumman, both of which produce US nuclear missiles. PCC’s subsidiary Great West Life & Annuity Insurance owns US$28 million worth of bonds in Northrop Grumman.
Royal Bank of Canada has participated in bond issues of or provided loans to Alliant Techsystems, Boeing, EADS, Honeywell International (producer of US nuclear weapons components), Lockheed Martin (producer of US nuclear missiles) and Rolls-Royce (producer of British nuclear-armed submarines). RBC states on its website that there are certain types of clients and transactions it “avoids in all cases”, including “the financing of companies manufacturing or trading in equipment or material for nuclear, chemical or biological warfare, landmines or cluster bombs”.
Scotiabank has recently provided loans of US$28 million (estimate) to Babcock & Wilcox, a producer of US nuclear warheads; $75 million (estimate) to Bechtel, the operator of two major US nuclear weapons laboratories; US$36 million (estimate) to General Dynamics; and US$171 million (estimate) to Northrop Grumman. It has also participated in a bond issue of General Dynamics.
Sun Life Financial owns bonds worth US$54 million in BAE Systems, and shares worth US$1.5 billion in Honeywell International, US$1.5 billion in Lockheed Martin, US$534 million in Northrop Grumman and US$101 million in Rolls-Royce.
Toronto-Dominion Bank has provided loans to BAE Systems of US$132 million (estimate), EADS of US$111 million (estimate), General Dynamics of US$115 million (estimate) and Rolls-Royce of US$46 million (estimate). It has also participated in a bond issue of General Dynamics. TD Bank has a policy not to “lend money for transactions that are directly related to the trade in or manufacturing of material for nuclear, chemical or biological weapons or for landmines or cluster bombs”.