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How Businesses Can Hedge Cross-Border Balance Sheet Exposures
This article addresses one particular category of currency risk: the risk associated with carrying financial assets or liabilities denominated in a currency other than the functional currency. Such assets and liabilities are reported on the balance sheet in the functional currency at values that reflect spot exchange rates at the end of each accounting period.

04/15/2014

Why Treasurers Must Embrace – and Finance – Sustainability
Sustainability is no longer about corporate citizenship or philanthropy. It’s absolutely critical to the life of companies—and sustainability starts with treasurers. That’s the message Andrew Winston will deliver at the CTC Corporate Treasurers Forum. Winston, author of the “The Big Pivot,” will explain why it makes financial sense for companies to embark on sustainability projects right now.

04/15/2014

AFP Fraudwatch: How Treasury Should Respond to Heartbleed
By now, you have probably heard about the Heartbleed bug—a serious vulnerability in recent versions of OpenSSL, software that millions of websites use to encrypt communications with users. Making matters worse is the fact that an easy-to-use exploit that allows criminals to abuse the vulnerability is being widely traded online.

04/14/2014

Bitcoin Breakdown: Pros and Cons of Accepting Bitcoin Payments
As the buzz over Bitcoin has grown, corporates have taken notice and are looking at how it can apply to their businesses. Could Bitcoin eventually disrupt traditional B2B payments?

04/11/2014

Mobile Payments: Why Merchants Have the Power
Many mobile payment apps and mobile wallets fail to connect with consumers because they focus too much on the payment and not on the customer experience. However, some retailers have had success with their own mobile apps because they understand what appeals to the customer. There may be mobile payment opportunities for other retailers as well, if they are able to discern what would make their customers want to pay with their phones.

04/11/2014

Former Canadian Finance Minister Flaherty Dies
Former Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty passed away Thursday afternoon at the age of 64. Multiple reports said he suffered a heart attack.

04/10/2014

April 2014 Risk Newsletter
Currency devaluations across the globe are challenging multinationals. John Hintze examines how MNCs are dealing with this latest FX hurdle. Meanwhile, new AFP research finds that credit card fraud is up—as is security spending to fight it, while Ira Kawaller explains how businesses can hedge cross-border balance sheet exposures. There’s an enterprise planning case study from Crate & Barrel, plus more news and best practices.

04/10/2014

Durbin Amendment Isn’t Helping Retailers Much, Study Finds
When Congress passed the Durbin Amendment back in 2010, their intent was to lower retailers’ interchange fees from accepting debit cards. But a new survey by the Richmond Fed found that, since the rule took effect in 2011, debit acceptance costs for sales $10 or less have actually increased.

04/10/2014

The 4 Leadership Traits Spencer Stuart Seeks in Treasurers
Philip Murphy, consultant at executive recruiter Spencer Stuart’s financial officer practice, believes treasurer candidates can differentiate themselves as effective leaders in four ways.

04/09/2014

Third Time’s a Charm: Same-Day ACH to Settle 3 Times Daily
NACHA President and CEO Jan Estep revealed more details on her organization's new, phased-in approach to same-day ACH.

04/09/2014

Industry Group Outlines New Project to Speed E-Payments

The Remittance Coalition, a group of payments industry players that works to increase the efficiency of B2B payments made and reconciled by U.S. businesses, shared more details of its much-anticipated B2B Directory project.

04/07/2014

This Week in Corporate Finance: Economy Seeing Gradual Improvement
We continue to live in an interesting world where we can’t quite gain enough evidence and insight to clearly see the path we are on, but the general feeling is one of gradual improvement. This week’s employment report continues to reinforce this Goldilocks narrative; not too hot but not too cool.

04/07/2014

Derivatives End-Users Fear Margin Requirements Could Hurt Capex
A survey administered by the Coalition for Derivatives End-Users—a partnership of organizations representing corporate end-users of OTC derivatives, including AFP—analyzed corporate practitioners on how margin requirements could affect their businesses. More than 67 percent of surveyed CFOs and corporate treasurers responded that margin requirements could hurt their companies’ capital expenditures.

04/04/2014

NACHA Requests Comment on Addenda Record Expansion
NACHA is requesting comment on the possible expansion of the number and types of addenda records available for use with ACH payments. The electronic payments association is considering expanding these records to make it easier for more end-users to receive and interpret payment related information on a timely basis.

04/03/2014

April 2014 FP&A Newsletter
FP&A professionals can never get enough spreadsheet tips. In this issue of FP&A newsletter, data visualization expert Randall Bolten offers no less than 19 tips for short- and long-term payoffs.

04/03/2014

AFP Fraud Survey: Card Fraud Up, As Is Security Spending
Credit card fraud increased last year despite heightened interest in reducing security risks, according to the 2014 AFP Payments Fraud and Control Survey, sponsored by J.P. Morgan. In response, companies appear to recognize this growing threat and are gearing up for the shift in credit/debit card liability from issuers to merchants.

04/03/2014

AFP Fraudwatch: FBI Takes Down ATM Skimming Gang
The FBI has indicts 17 people for their involvement in an international ATM skimming and money laundering scheme. Also, Sally Beauty admits its recent breach was larger than anticipated, and two banks drop a lawsuit against Target and Trustwave just a few days after filing it.

04/03/2014

Mosaic's Treasurer Reveals His 6 Crucial Skills for Leading
Cris Barros was named assistant treasurer and later treasurer of Mosaic, though he had virtually no previous experience in treasury. But what he did have was the right combination of people skills and management experience that allowed him to lead the team effectively.

04/02/2014

Survey: Budgeting Processes Generally Costly and Ineffective
Planning, budgeting and forecasting is still too costly and ineffective at most organizations, according to a new Deloitte survey. The survey found that companies take up to six months to a year on their main budgeting processes but make changes at the last minute.

04/02/2014

Case Study: Becoming a Finance Business Partner
In 2011, Maersk Drilling USA's finance team designed a specific strategy on how they could become the business partners they needed to be to add value to the bottom line. The team also made it a point to execute the strategy without adding more resources.

04/01/2014

Report: SEC to Finalize Money-Market Fund Final Rule by May
The Securities and Exchange Commission is a few steps closer to completing new rules for money-market funds (MMFs), with a vote expected by the end of April. However, the SEC is reportedly considering complaints it has received from the MMF industry and is looking into exempting certain MMFs from having to float their share price.

04/01/2014

Trial and Error: Developing a Managerial Style for Treasury
How Sarah Schaus, assistant treasurer and assistant vice president of Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America developed her managerial style.

04/01/2014

Bitcoin Breakdown: IRS Declares Bitcoin a Property
The Internal Revenue Service said last week that it will treat Bitcoin as a property for tax purposes, rather than a currency. The classification means that Bitcoin and other virtual currencies will now be subject to capital gains taxes. Meanwhile, Mt. Gox claims to have discovered about 200,000 bitcoins in an old digital wallet.

03/31/2014

Wal-Mart Accuses Visa, Banks of Colluding over Interchange Fees
Wal-Mart is suing Visa for $5 billion for allegedly colluding with some of the largest U.S. banks to fix interchange fees for retailers. The suit claims that banks have agreed to not compete with each other for merchant acceptance.

03/28/2014

Case Study: How Crate & Barrel Put Enterprise Planning to Work
Enterprise planning brings the high-level, long term strategic goals of an organization in line with the operational forecasts. Crate & Barrel implemented an enterprise planning solution by connecting these pieces.

03/28/2014

RMB Payments Surge in Australia
Renminbi payments are booming in Austrialia, according to SWIFT data. Nevertheless, the RMB fell behind the Swiss franc as payments currency in February. RMB payments have increased by 248 percent in Australia over the past year.

03/27/2014

March 2014 Futures in Finance Newsletter
This month, we have a report from the first meeting of the Stockholm FP&A Club,which brought together Swedish financial planning and analysis professionals and provided them with an outlet to discuss the latest trends in FP&A. AFP has also recently partnered with Villanova University and Rice University to offer prep courses for the FP&A Certification.  Also, the AFP Advisors Network looks at how independent consultants can set their pricing, CFO Coach Cindy Craft provides tips on creating a resume that works, and more.

03/27/2014

Hancock Holding Company Becomes Accredited Provider of AFP Service Codes
The Association for Financial Professionals (AFP) announced that Hancock Holding Company has become an accredited provider of the AFP Service CodesTM ––the standard that corporate treasury departments use for comparing bank services.

03/26/2014

Fed Survey: POS Mobile Payments on the Rise
Consumers using mobile phones to make purchases at the point-of-sale (POS) tripled in 2013, according to recent data from the Federal Reserve. Smartphone users making POS mobile payments jumped from 6 percent in 2012 to 17 percent in 2013—even as the proportion of overall smartphone users engaging in mobile payments remains constant.

03/26/2014

What Corporate Treasurers Can Learn from their Nonprofit Peers
Treasury departments for many nonprofit organizations have to deal with many compliance challenges that corporate treasury functions often do not need to worry about. Given that rogue organizations and individuals frequently attempt to route their funds through these international nonprofits, global law enforcement agencies frequently place these organizations under a microscope.

03/26/2014

Canadian Treasury & Finance Pros React to Flaherty Resignation
Jim Flaherty, who has served as Canada’s Minister of Finance since 2006, surprisingly announced his resignation last week. Flaherty, who has been in politics since 1995, said he will be entering the private sector. Upon hearing the news, treasury and finance professionals praised Flaherty for the work he has done over his lengthy career.

03/25/2014

AFP Releases Second Payables Strategy Guide
AFP has released the second installment in its two-part series on creating a payables strategy. Underwritten by Fifth Third Bank, the new guide offers an even more in-depth look at how a payables strategy can help a company prevent unnecessary expenses, possible regulatory compliance failures and an inability to benefit from technological enhancements.

03/25/2014

AFP Fraudwatch: Sally Beauty Breach May Have Affected All Locations
This week, research by Brian Krebs indicates that the Sally Beauty breach may be much larger than the retailer is letting on, the California Department of Motor Vehicles appears to have incurred a card-not-present breach, and wealthy customers of the UK's oldest private bank fall victim to an old-school scam.

03/25/2014

Strike Back: Appeals Court Overturns Interchange Fee Ruling
Banks scored a big win last week as the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a federal judge’s ruling last summer, which had struck down the Federal Reserve’s cap on debit interchange fees. The appeals court’s said the Fed reasonably interpreted the law, doing its best to overcome the “ambiguity” of the Durbin Amendment.

03/24/2014

Currency Devaluations Challenge Multinationals Selling Abroad

Currencies around the world have weakened relative to the U.S. dollar, a boon to multinationals buying supplies in dollars but less so for companies selling into those markets, and a reminder to corporates to manage currency risk proactively.

03/21/2014

CFO Coach: Prime Resume Real Estate
On average, how long does it take before you stop listening to the person who is talking to you and begin mentally going over your remaining “to do” list, think about what you’re going to say next, or plan how you can tactfully extract yourself from the person and the conversation? Think about that the next time you are working on your resume.

03/21/2014

March 2014 Payments Newsletter
This month, we look at the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), the Mt. Gox meltdown, the importance of having an enterprise payment strategy that works in harmony with your working capital strategy, new revelations about the Target breach, NACHA's new plan for same-day ACH settlement, and more.

03/20/2014

Yellen: Fed May Raise Rates by Spring 2015
U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen made some waves in her news conference Wednesday when she said that interest rates may begin to rise about six months after the central bank concludes its bond-purchasing program. With the Fed expected to end quantitative easing in the fall, the rate hike would therefore begin in spring 2015.

03/20/2014

Was Wintry Weather Behind the Economic Slowdown?
Did harsh weather affecting much of the United States this winter put a chill on business activity, or was the slowdown in factory orders, the labor market, construction and vehicle sales a sign of another cool-down in the economy? That was the question as momentum seen last fall dissipated in early 2014.

03/19/2014

Report: Canadian Dollar Tops List of Most Volatile Currencies
The Canadian dollar (CAD) surprisingly tied with the Brazilian Real (BRL) to top FireApps' list of the most volatile currencies in the fourth quarter of 2013. But for the first time ever, the euro (EUR) was not on the list.


03/19/2014

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