Western Financial Group Acquires Two Additional Alberta Agencies

HIGH RIVER, AB, July 5, 2004 /CNW/ (TSX � WES, WES.DB.A) � Western Financial Group (�Western Financial Group� or �the Company�) announces the acquisitions of Page Insurance Ltd. in Drumheller, Alberta and Bru Agencies Ltd. in Hanna, Alberta.

�These well known and respected offices each enjoy the largest market share in their communities. Western Financial Group will now have a presence in two more important markets in southeastern Alberta,� said Scott Tannas, President and Chief Executive Officer of Western Financial Group. �I am also very pleased that Ray Page and Ron Poole from Page Insurance and Roger Bru from Bru Agencies will continue to lead their offices, and will add significantly to the insurance expertise of our network, particularly in the agriculture and transportation sectors.�

The acquisitions add approximately 7,000 customers to the Western Financial Group network bringing the total to more than 180,000.

Western Financial Group is one of the leading Western-based financial services networks operating in Western Canada. With offices in towns and cities across the West, the Company provides more than 180,000 customers with insurance, investment and banking services through its WFG Agency Network, Bank West and The Western Mutual Fund Company.

The Common Shares of Western Financial Group are traded on The Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol “WES” and the 9% Debentures trade under the stock symbol “WES.DB.A”.