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Streetwise Streetwise newsletter: AI startup hits nine-figure valuation, Scotiabank shares under pressure after acquisition streak

Here are the top reads on deals and financial services over the last 24 hours,

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Aggressive acquisition strategy hits Scotiabank’s stock price as investor skepticism mounts: After a stunning run of acquisitions, Bank of Nova Scotia is feeling the heat. Shares of Canada’s third-largest lender are suffering relative to rival Big Six banks, and the pressure is on management to prove its recent spate of deals was worth it. Story (Tim Kiladze, for subscribers)

U.S. company acquires Canadian cloud businesses Bonfire and Questica for $198-million: An American holding company has agreed to buy two Canadian cloud-based businesses for nearly US$200-million, with plans to combine them in a new publicly traded “digital city hall” business. Story (Josh O’Kane, for subscribers)

Alternative stock exchange IEX gets its first listing: On Wednesday, IEX announced that its platform would soon host the shares of Interactive Brokers Group Inc., an automated brokerage firm, which is set to become the only major U.S. stock listed outside of the New York Stock Exchange or Nasdaq. Story (Tim Shufelt, for subscribers)

Nine-figure valuation: A Toronto-based artificial-intelligence software startup with just 38 employees and a handful of customers has surpassed US$100-million valuation after receiving a capital injection led by Montreal financial-services giant Power Financial Corp. Story

Discount broker revamp: Toronto-Dominion Bank is partnering with a U.S. financial technology startup to revamp its online trading platform for retail investors as well as launch a robo-advisory service that will house its own proprietary exchange-traded funds. TD has signed a licensing agreement with Hydrogen Technology Corp., a New York-based fintech company, that will allow TD to use Hydrogen’s proprietary technology to enhance its current discount brokerage, TD WebBroker, for do-it-yourself investors. Story

Open banking opinion piece: The Federal budget delivered by Finance Minister Bill Morneau last February contained a commitment to examine the merits of open banking. While policy-makers are busy examining the issue, this move does not appear to have opened much of a broader public debate among the users of banking services on the benefits of open banking, or what Canadians of all walks of life want from the banking industry. A broader debate is needed. Opinion (Andrew Moor and Dan Dickinson)

MORE FINANCIAL SERVICES NEWS

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Politics: The United States’ most powerful banker, JPMorgan Chase & Co chief executive Jamie Dimon, caused a stir Wednesday when he said he would be able to beat U.S. President Donald Trump in an election. Mr. Dimon immediately walked those comments back and said he isn’t running for the country’s top office. Story

Bragging rights: New York has overtaken London as the world’s most attractive financial center, a survey said on Wednesday, as Britain’s decision to leave the EU prompts banks to shift jobs out of the city to keep access to Europe’s single market. Story

MORE DEALS NEWS

Mining sector: Canadian miner New Gold Inc. is exploring a sale as it grapples with ballooning development costs and operating challenges at its new mine, people familiar with the situation told Reuters. Story

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