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AFP Fraudwatch: A Closer Look at GameOver Zeus
Treasury and finance professionals who attended the 10th Annual CTC Corporate Treasurers Forum last week received an in-depth look at GameOver Zeus, the botnet responsible for stealing at least $125 million, including routine $1-million wire transfers. Kory Bakken, Special Agent of the FBI, Chicago Division, discussed how law enforcement brought the botnet down.

06/11/2014

BI & Analytics: Key Tools for FP&A Professionals
The role of the FP&A professional encompasses such activities as planning, forecasting, budgeting, controlling, variance analysis, scenario analysis, communicating goals and results, and decision support. While spreadsheets have been a huge advance and will continue to be a mainstay tool in the FP&A toolkit, modern BI and analytics represent the next generation of FP&A tools.

06/10/2014

Treasury, Finance Get Proactive About Climate Change—Or Else
Treasury and finance professionals who focus less on short-term earnings and more on big environmental and social challenges will be the ones who come out ahead in the long run, argued author Andrew Winston, opening keynote speaker of the 10th Annual CTC Corporate Treasurers Forum.

06/10/2014

Treasury: A Change Agent for the Organization
The concept of treasury functioning as a change agent within the organization was the theme of last week’s 10th annual CTC Corporate Treasurers Forum. With so many treasurers taking on additional responsibilities, it’s no surprise they are seen increasingly as change agents, and this shift was the focus of an opening panel discussion at the forum.

06/09/2014

June 2014 FP&A Newsletter
AFP is pleased to officially launch its Certified Corporate Financial Planning & Analysis Professional (“FP&A”) credential, the first accreditation specifically for FP&A professionals. Also this issue, read how Maersk Drilling USA’s finance team transformed themselves into business partners, and how finance executives find good employees.

06/05/2014

How Sun Chemical’s In-House Bank Mitigates FX Volatility
When Sun Chemical revamped its treasury group, integrating an in-house cash bank with its long-time notional pool was a key component, helping to manage FX exposures.

06/04/2014

AFP Survey: Treasurers’ Strategic Role Continues to Grow
In the aftermath of the financial crisis, corporate boards are paying close attention to liquidity and risk exposures, which have elevated the strategic role of corporate treasurers. This trend that is expected to continue over the next five years, according to a new survey by AFP. Oliver Wyman provided insights and financial support for the 2014 AFP Strategic Role of Treasury Survey.

06/04/2014

Prospects for Canada’s RMBS Market: Will Issuance Decline?
Canada has made several significant changes to its housing finance system in recent years. A new report by Standard and Poor’s (S&P) examined how these changes may affect the market for residential mortgage backed securities (RMBS).

06/04/2014

U.S. Surpasses Taiwan as Offshore RMB Clearing Center
Renminbi payments value in the United States increased 327 percent between April 2013 and April 2014, according to the SWIFT RMB Tracker. That puts the U.S. at third in the world for RMB payments value, excluding China and Hong Kong.

06/03/2014

Canadian Treasurers Report a Buyers’ Market for Borrowers
Low interest rates, strong bank balance sheets and attractive debt and equity markets have combined to help Canadian companies access cheaper funding over the past six months. Treasurers have had much success in negotiating revolvers and issuing various types of debt to reset their capital structure and help fund business operations.

06/03/2014

AFP Fraudwatch: Game Over for Botnet, Ransomware Operators
The U.S. Department of Justice teamed with Europol, the UK’s National Crime Agency, the Microsoft Cybercrime Center, Dell SecureWorks and others to take down the GameOver Zeus botnet and Cryptolocker ransomware.

06/03/2014

FP&A Professional Tells How He Passed the Certification Test
Travis Lockhart, manager of financial planning and analysis with IMC and one of the first applicants to pass the beta FP&A Certification exam, gives his thoughts on the test-taking process.

06/02/2014

This Week in Corporate Finance: Market Shrugs at U.S. GDP Contraction
As we wrap up the fifth month of 2014, we certainly are not in nirvana, but the economic situation in the U.S. certainly continues to improve. We have come quite a way since the nadir of early 2009 when we can post a quarterly GDP number of -1.0 percent and the market merely shrugs and says, “Who cares? That is backward looking. Things are looking pretty good on the horizon.”

06/02/2014

How Treasurers and CFOs Can Set Up Their Teams for Success
Workers are happiest—and most motivated—when they feel that they accomplish something meaningful at work. These accomplishments do not need to be major breakthroughs, but making sure your team is set up to succeed is the mark of a good manager in just about any field.

05/30/2014

May 2014 Futures in Finance Newsletter
This month, AFP officially launched the Certified Corporate Financial Planning & Analysis Professional (FP&A) credential and introduced the first class of certified FP&A professionals. This new certification program is the first of its kind and specifically designed for the FP&A function. Also this month, we review the results of the 2014 AFP Compensation Survey.

05/29/2014

DOL Postpones Conflict of Interest Proposed Rule

The Department of Labor (DOL) expects to re-propose the “Conflict of Interest Rule-Investment Advice” in January 2015. Also in January 2015, DOL expects to issue notices of proposed rulemaking about the safe harbor for the selection of annuity providers for individual account plans, as well as including lifetime inco

05/29/2014

New Booz Allen CFO Discusses Upcoming Challenges
On July 1, Kevin Cook is set to become the chief financial officer of Booz Allen Hamilton. Currently Booz Allen’s senior vice president and corporate controller, Cook will take the reins from current CFO and Chief Administrative Officer Samuel Strickland, who is retiring.

05/29/2014

Mobile Deposit Usage Surges in Canada
Canadians have deposited more than one million checks via mobile phones since the Canadian Payments Association (CPA) approved the check image rule last year, according to data from NCR. The rule allowed for mobile remote deposit capture (RDC).

05/28/2014

AFP Survey: In Finance Profession, Good Raises Reach Staff Level
Finance salaries continue to rise in North America, even among non-executive staff. According to a survey released Wednesday by AFP, average salaries in finance departments of corporations increased in 2013, reflecting continued modest growth in the U.S. economy. Financial professionals at the staff level reportedly saw the biggest bump in compensation.

05/28/2014

European Treasurers Share Concerns over Bitcoin
Last week at the annual General Assembly of the Association of Corporate Treasurers—Suisse Romande (ACTSR) in Geneva, Switzerland, a representative from the Bitcoin Foundation gave a presentation on Bitcoin. The presentation led to a candid discussion among European treasurers about the controversial virtual currency.

05/27/2014

Legislation Seeks to Limit Corporate Inversion: What To Know
U.S. Congressional Democrats in both the House and Senate have unveiled legislation that would make it more difficult for U.S. businesses to avoid domestic tax exposure by shifting their headquarters outside United States tax jurisdiction through a foreign firm merger.

05/23/2014

AFP Fraudwatch: Retail Treasurers Increase Cyberinsurance
Treasurers of retail chain stores said they expect their companies will spend as much as triple the amount they already pay for cyberinsurance in the wake of the Target security breach. That’s on top of devoting additional employee hours preparing reports to show senior management and board members their cybersecurity measures.

05/23/2014

May 2014 Payments Newsletter
This month, we bring you exclusive coverage of the recent AFP Treasury Advisory Group (TAG) Meeting and the 2014 AFP Retail Roundtable, both of which were held this month in Dallas. The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and EMV were major topics of discussion.

05/22/2014

Heidrick & Struggles on What Makes a Great Treasury Leader
When it comes to effective treasury leaders, there’s no “one size fits all,” say two partners with the executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles.

05/22/2014

Leadership in Treasury: Darren McCallon, Treasurer of TrueBlue
In the latest installment of the Leadership in Treasury series, Darren McCallon, vice president of finance and treasurer of TrueBlue in Seattle, reveals how he successfully transitioned from staff to management.

05/21/2014

Fed Study: Fees, Gates Could Cause Money Fund Run
A recent study authored by Federal Reserve economists concluded that rules currently being proposed to prevent money market fund runs could instead have the opposite effect. Rules that impose restrictions on immediate redemptions, known as gates, and fees during periods of shortened liquidity, the study cautions, “may threaten financial stability by setting up the possibility of preemptive runs.”

05/21/2014

Unified Field Theory: Making the Case for FP&A Standards
Organizations lack widely accepted FP&A standards and principles, and the range of inputs and methodologies can lead to widely varying results that can adversely impact strategic decisions. In response, a new whitepaper, On the Same Page: The Case for FP&A Standards, addresses the need for clear-cut standards and definitions in FP&A.

05/21/2014

Obey or Pay: It’s Time for Treasurers to Act on FATCA
With the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) scheduled to take effect on July 1, many treasury departments are making sure they know what they need to do to comply. Not surprisingly, the law was a major topic of discussion at this week’s AFP Treasury Advisory Group meeting in Dallas.

05/21/2014

Treasury Best Practices: Improving Bank Account Management
Without streamlining its roster of banks, treasury cannot do an effective job of administrating accounts and keeping track of all relevant account information. That’s the key takeaway from the second installment of AFP’s Treasury in Practice series, Improving Bank Account Management: Best Practices, underwritten by KeyBank.

05/20/2014

Enabling CFOs to See the Strategic Value of Treasury
Many CFOs are still unaware of the strategic value of treasury, members of AFP’s Treasury Advisory Group noted at their latest meeting. And because of the excessive turnover at the CFO level throughout the business world in recent years, treasury departments are striving to demonstrate the value they bring to their organizations.

05/20/2014

AFP Launches Certified Corporate FP&A Professional Credential
AFP has officially launched its Certified Corporate Financial Planning & Analysis Professional (“FP&A”) credential, the first-of-its-kind certification program specifically for FP&A executives. The launch coincides with the introduction of the first class of certified FP&A professionals.

05/20/2014

Businesses Urge Congress to Oppose Raising PBGC Premiums

After two years of Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation premium increases, companies, business groups and pension trade associations asked Congress to oppose additional premium increases.

05/20/2014

Today’s Most Important FP&A Challenge: Supporting Innovation
The 2014 Key Issues survey by The Hackett Group found that risks related to competition, regulation and talent are gaining momentum and affecting the role of finance and general and of financial planning and analysis groups in particular.

05/19/2014

Interest Rates May Finally Rise—Much to Consumers’ Chagrin
Prior to last December’s meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, the Fed was purchasing $40 billion per month in agency mortgage-backed securities and $45 billion per month in longer-term Treasury securities. By the time the FOMC met in March, the monthly purchasing had slowed to $25 billion in agency mortgage-backed securities and $30 billion in longer term Treasury securities.

05/16/2014

Turmoil in Ukraine is Wreaking Havoc on Treasury and Finance
Treasury and finance executives whose companies do business in Russia, the Ukraine, and other former Soviet republics are feeling the effects of the Crimean crisis on their bottom lines. The turmoil has caused the ruble’s exchange rate to plummet, making it more expensive for companies to import goods and to service existing debts. The crisis is also making it more difficult for companies to borrow money. In addition, sanctions against individual banks are complicating cross-border payments.

05/16/2014

Study: Higher PBGC Premiums Would Harm GDP, Jobs, Consumers
A new study found that additional premiums for the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation would severely impact the U.S. GDP, the job market, and consumer purchasing power.

05/15/2014

Fear of the Unknown: EMV Tops Retail Treasurers’ Concerns
Treasurers at the 2014 AFP Retail Roundtable in Dallas said Thursday that their biggest concern is EMV migration. They cited cost, customer resistance, and nagging doubts that switching to the chip-and-PIN equipment is the right technology to fight future fraud attempts.

05/15/2014

CFO Coach: The Evolution of Interviewing
Technology has evolved the interviewing process. Video interviewing will create seamless conversations via technology that will dramatically change the hiring landscape.

05/15/2014

AFP Fraudwatch: Post-Target, Treasurers Get Proactive
Fraud has always been a concern for treasurers, and in the post-Target environment, it has only become even more of a priority. At the latest meeting of AFP’s Treasury Advisory Group in Dallas, practitioners discussed the new fraud issues they face, and the steps they are taking to address them, in the wake of the Target security breach.

05/14/2014

CTC Releases New Guide on Managing Supply Chain Risk
In a new guide, Leadership in Treasury: Managing Risk in the Supply Chain, underwritten by Reval, AFP’s Corporate Treasurers Council explores some of the ways that treasurers can use their skills and insights to support strategic management of risk in the supply chain. Though it is unlikely that most treasurers will be responsible for implementing supply chain risk management policies outside finance, they can still help to identify, evaluate and suggest mitigation techniques across the entire organization.

05/13/2014

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