More solid than ever and always as agile, Laurentian Bank sets its sights on
the future with confidence - 2010 Annual Meeting of Shareholders

MONTREAL, March 16 /CNW Telbec/ - At Laurentian Bank's Annual Meeting of Shareholders held today at the Monument-National, the Bank presented an overview of the excellent results posted during its fiscal year ended on October 31, 2009. In fact, fiscal 2009 saw records broken for the third consecutive year, including in terms of the organization's profitability. More specifically, the Bank registered a net profit of $113 million, representing an increase of more than 10% over the previous year.

"Laurentian Bank is the only Canadian bank that registered increased profits per share during each of the five previous years, and it has done so most recently within a context of unprecedented uncertainty," underlined Mr. Réjean Robitaille, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Not only did the Bank successfully navigate its way through the crisis, but it weathered the storm on a more solid footing than ever. Indeed, our balance sheet has never been more robust, and the accelerated growth of our loan and deposit portfolios testifies to how well we executed our strategies."

Stronger Positioning Within the Banking Market

In 2009, the Bank solidified its positioning within the markets in which it is active, notably among its retail clients who enjoy the benefit of the third largest branch network in Québec. The institution remains Canada's leading provider of banking products to financial intermediaries via its B2B Trust subsidiary. It is also a well recognized player in the area of Institutional Fixed Income brokerage, thanks to the ever-expanding operations of Laurentian Bank Securities.

Furthermore, since this past summer, the Bank has gained exceptional new visibility in the metropolitan Montréal area after winning an exclusive contract from the Société de transport de Montréal for the operation of automatic banking machines (ABMs) throughout the city's subway system. With the 72 ABMs located in the Metro, the Bank now has a total of 406 machines available to its clientele.

Fiscal 2009 was marked by a number of major distinctions bestowed upon the Bank as well. Based on a Léger Marketing survey, Laurentian Bank was ranked as the second most admired financial institution by Québecers for the second consecutive year, and it figured among the 20 most responsible corporate citizens in the province according to Responsible Investment Group. Moreover, the Québec Federation of Chambers of Commerce selected Laurentian Bank as one of the 20 enterprises inducted into the Québec Business Hall of Fame in view of its contributions to the development of the province.

A Winning Combination of Solidity and Agility

The Bank is currently in a more solid position than ever, having posted combined growth of its loan and deposit portfolios nearing $5 billion in 2009. This solidity has, in turn, allowed the institution to show outstanding agility in its product offerings.

At the end of the assembly, Mr. Robitaille took time to pay tribute to the Bank's 3,600 employees. "All of our personnel contribute to furthering the fundamental values that are at the very heart of our identity," he emphasized. "And the progress we have made has positioned us to assure the Bank's sustained development in 2010 and beyond. More solid than ever and always as agile, Laurentian Bank has its sights set on the future with confidence."

About Laurentian Bank

Laurentian Bank of Canada is a banking institution operating across Canada and offering its clients diversified financial services. Distinguishing itself through excellence in service, as well as through its simplicity and proximity, the Bank serves individual consumers and small and medium-sized businesses. The Bank also offers its products to a wide network of independent financial intermediaries through B2B Trust, as well as full-service brokerage solutions through Laurentian Bank Securities.

Laurentian Bank is well established in the Province of Quebec, operating the third-largest retail branch network. Elsewhere throughout Canada, it operates in specific market segments where it holds an enviable position. Laurentian Bank of Canada has more than $23 billion in balance sheet assets and more than $14 billion in assets under administration. Founded in 1846, the Bank employs more than 3,600 people.

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited members of the media/

SOURCE Laurentian Bank of Canada

For further information: For further information: Gladys Caron, Vice-President, Public Affairs, Communications and Investor Relations, (514) 284-4500, extension 7511, gladys.caron@banquelaurentienne.ca

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Laurentian Bank of Canada

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