National Bank proposes its S&P Income Trust Index™ Notes

Montreal, 22 March 2006 - 

·  Principal fully protected by National Bank at maturity
·  Unlimited return at maturity
·  Weekly secondary market maintained by National Bank Financial

National Bank is offering its clients its S&P Income Trust Index™ Notes, an investment solution that combines full principal protection with an unlimited potential return at maturity over an 8-year term.

The Notes’ return is linked to the performance of a portfolio of securities with the objective to track, for the portion invested in the market under the applicable investment policy, the performance of the S&P Income Trust Index™, which comprises 72 of the largest income trusts in Canada. 

The product is intended for investors who want to reduce the risk related to investing in income trusts, while benefiting from the high growth potential of these vehicles. For investors who already hold income trust units, these Notes are an opportunity to consolidate a portion of their profits and reinvest the proceeds in a diversified, principal-protected solution.

Each Note costs $100 and the minimum investment is $2,000. At maturity, on April 14, 2014, investors could receive an unlimited return potential over and above the principal amount.

S&P Income Trust Index™ Notes can be purchased from National Bank Direct Brokerage at 1‑800‑363‑3511 (toll-free) or (514) 866‑6755, National Bank Financial at 1‑800‑361‑8838 (toll free) or (514) 875‑6800, or any investment advisor or financial planner in Canada.

The S&P/TSX Income Trust IndexNote (the “Note”) is a principal-protected investment redeemable at maturity.  Variation in the benchmark portfolio of the Note, which corresponds to the variation in the return of the underlying assets, will have a direct impact on the interest payable.  It is thus  possible that no interest  will be paid.  An investment in the Note is subject to a number of risk factors.  A management fee of 1.25% per annum and a combined trailer fees of  0.50% per annum will  accrue daily and be deducted monthly in arrears.  In addition National Bank will pay a selling fee of $5.00 per Note to the dealers and advisors whose clients purchase Notes. Complete information related to this issue of the Notes is included in an Information Statement which will be sent to the investors prior to the closing date.  Potential purchasers should consult the Information Statement before investing in the Notes.

The S&P/TSX Income Trust Index™ is intellectual property of Standard & Poor’s. Standard & Poor's and S&P are trademarks of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. TSX is a trademark of The Toronto Stock Exchange(TSX). These trademarks have been licensed for use by National Bank of Canada. The Notes are in no way sponsored, endorsed, sold or promoted by Standard & Poor’s or The Toronto Stock Exchange. Standard & Poor’s, and the TSX have no obligation or liability in connection with the administration, marketing or trading of the Notes.

About National Bank
National Bank of Canada is an integrated group that provides comprehensive financial services to consumers, small and medium-sized enterprises and large corporations in its core market, while offering specialized services to its clients elsewhere in the world. National Bank offers a full array of banking services, including corporate and investment banking. It is an active player on international capital markets and, through its subsidiaries, is involved in securities brokerage, insurance and wealth management, as well as mutual fund and retirement plan management. National Bank has more than $105 billion in assets and, together with its subsidiaries, employs 16,993 people. The Bank’s securities are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (NA: TSX). For more information, visit the Bank’s website atwww.nbc.ca.

Information (The telephone number provided below is for the exclusive use of journalists and other media representatives):

Denis Dubé
Director – Public Relations
National Bank of Canada
Tel.: (514) 394-8644