Manulife Bank launches mortgage contest for Manulife One

Online program tells Canadians how to benefit from flexible mortgage account

WATERLOO, ON, Oct. 18, 2002 — Manulife Bank is offering its clients the opportunity to “Win a ‘mortgage-free’ month while learning how to be mortgage free for life.”

The Bank’s online contest invites consumers to take a few minutes to learn about a unique mortgage product before they answer a simple question. On December 2, five names will be drawn from the correct responses and five cheques for $1,500 each will be sent out, just in time for the holiday season.

“It’s really a ‘learn and earn’ kind of contest,” says Roman Fedchyshyn, President and CEO of Manulife Bank of Canada. “The Manulife One flexible mortgage account is a truly unique product – there is no account exactly like it in Canada today. We want Canadians to take a couple of minutes to understand what makes the account so different and how it works, so they’ll see how it can take years off their mortgage and save them thousands in interest. It’s happening in Australia and in the U.K.”

Based on products first launched in Australia, then later in the United Kingdom, the Manulife One flexible mortgage account launched in 1999 is truly unique in the Canadian marketplace.

It is an all-in-one personal borrowing and chequing account that combines a client’s chequing and short-term savings accounts with their mortgage. The result: every time a client receives a paycheque or makes a deposit — rather than depositing the money into a chequing account where the money sits “idle”, earning the client virtually nothing — that income pays down the outstanding balance of their mortgage account. When the client needs to use that money for
monthly expenses, the funds can be easily withdrawn and the balance is
automatically increased.

Since interest is calculated on a daily basis, every extra dollar in the account reduces the client’s debt and their related interest payments. Over the years, the flow of income through the account could save clients thousands of dollars in interest and help them pay off the mortgage years sooner.

Before Manulife introduced Manulife One, an outside research firm did in-depth analysis of the Canadian market. The researchers concluded that a typical Canadian could pay off a 20-year mortgage in 13 or 14 years and save $20,000 to $30,000 without doing anything differently than they are today, except for making their income work for them first, every day, Mr. Fedchyshyn said.

And Canadian clients love it, he said. In the past year, more than 90 per cent of Manulife One customers said they were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the account.

As a result, earlier this year Manulife Bank introduced a consumer challenge.

“We’re so confident they’ll like the account that we’ve invited Canadians to try Manulife One, and if it doesn’t do what we said it would, they can move back to their old way of banking and we’ll cover up to $500 of their costs,” said Mr Fedchyshyn.

The “Win a Mortgage-free month” contest runs to the end of November, 2002 and is available across Canada, outside Quebec.

About Manulife Financial

Manulife Financial is a leading Canadian-based financial services group operating in 15 countries and territories worldwide. Through its extensive network of employees, agents and distribution partners, Manulife Financial offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and wealth management services. Funds under management by Manulife Financial were Cdn$139.8 billion as at June 30, 2002.

Manulife Financial Corporation trades as ‘MFC’ on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under ‘0945’ on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at