Desjardins Financial Group Issues US$1.5 Billion in Covered Bonds

IMPORTANT NOTICE
NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO ANY U.S. PERSON OR TO ANY PERSON OR ADDRESS IN THE U.S. EXCEPT TO QUALIFIED INSTITUTIONAL BUYERS (AS DEFINED BELOW).

MONTREAL, Feb. 29, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - Yesterday, Desjardins Financial Group, through Caisse centrale Desjardins, has launched and priced the issuance of US$1.5 billion in covered bonds.

The issuance is expected to close on March 6, 2012 and the covered bonds will mature on March 6, 2017. A fixed interest rate of 1.60% will be paid out on the bonds twice annually.

This is the second time Caisse centrale Desjardins has issued bonds in the United States. This issue was done under Caisse centrale Desjardins's €5 billion global covered bond programme set up to help meet the liquidity needs of the Desjardins caisse network.

The Caisse centrale Desjardins February 28 bond issue was carried out through a syndicate of firms with RBS Securities Inc., Barclays Capital Inc., BNP Paribas Securities Corp., Citigroup Global Markets Inc., and Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC. acting as joint book-running managers. The co-managers were BMO Capital Markets Corp., CIBC World Markets Corp., Crédit Agricole Securities (USA) Inc., Desjardins Securities Inc., J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Natixis Securities Americas LLC, RBC Capital Markets, LLC, Scotia Capital (USA) Inc., and TD Securities (USA) LLC.

The covered bonds have not been registered under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), or any state securities laws; and unless so registered, the notes may not be offered or sold in the United States except pursuant to an exemption from, or in a transaction not subject to, the registration requirements of the Securities Act and applicable state securities laws. The covered bonds were offered only to qualified institutional buyers pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act and to non-U.S. persons outside the United States in accordance with Regulation S under the Securities Act. This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy such securities.

About Caisse centrale Desjardins

Caisse centrale Desjardins acts as treasurer for Desjardins Group and as its financial agent on Canadian and international markets. As treasurer, Caisse centrale Desjardins also develops and implements liquidities and asset liability management strategies for the Group. Caisse centrale is also responsible for meeting the liquidity needs of the Group, as well as increasing and diversifying its sources of funds on national and international markets.

About Desjardins Group

Desjardins Group www.desjardins.com is the leading cooperative financial group in Canada with assets of $190 billion. Drawing on the strength of its caisse network in Québec and Ontario, and its subsidiaries across Canada, it offers a full range of financial products and services to its 5.8 million members and clients. Desjardins specializes in Wealth Management and Life and Health Insurance, in Property and Casualty Insurance, in Personal Services, in Business and Institutional Services. As one of the largest employers in the country and among Canada's Top 100 Employers for 2012TM, Desjardins is supported by the skills of its 44,645 employees and the commitment of nearly 5,400 elected officers. A new education and cooperation program is now available to Desjardins members and the general public. For more information, visit www.desjardins.com/co-opme.

SOURCE DESJARDINS GROUP

For further information:

Information (for journalists only):
André Chapleau
Media Relations
514-281-7229, 1-866-866-7000, ext. 7229
media@desjardins.com

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