Every organisation, large or small, faces the risk of something going badly wrong and harming others and the organisation itself. Getting whistleblowing right saves time, money and resources. Larger, multi-national organisations tend to recognise the benefits of well promoted whistleblowing arrangements, but their effectiveness has, until now, been harder to prove. What is whistleblowing? Someone blows the whistle when they tell their employer, a regulator, customers, the police or the media about wrongdoing, risk or malpractice that they are aware of through their work. It can inform those who need to know about health and safety risks, potential environmental problems,

LIBOR Transition – Summer Reading (and some actions)

The transition away from LIBOR is picking up pace with a number of important publications being published over the past week or so, just in time for us to take them to the beach – or the back garden, which is probably warmer in the UK right now… These publications will no doubt be shared widely in the coming weeks but, as many of you have expressed an interest, we (with thanks to our colleagues at the LMA) have attempted to provide a summary of the key publications below. Please do read them and respond where appropriate. LIBOR transition is

How Long for Low Interest Rates?

The BIS has released its Annual Economic Report (https://www.bis.org/publ/arpdf/ar2018e.htm) in which it notes that the burden of resolving the GFC has been borne by central banks. They have acted to reduce short term interest rates by money market operations, and to reduce long interest rates by on market purchases through Quantitative Easing.  The latter is now being unwound but, to date, unwinding of central bank QE in the USA and the EUR block has had little effect on long term rates and expectations of future rates (see Graph 1.3 in the Report) remain low. However, BIS identifies potential problems due

Delaying Payments to Suppliers Helps Companies Unlock Cash?

Jack Large has brought to our attention a Wall Street Journal article titled Delaying Payments to Suppliers Helps Companies Unlock Cash. Jack argues the case for the suppliers caught funding their customers working capital. We all know the games played in the UK where budget holders sit on invoices until they want to pay them, then put them into the AP system and claim all paid on time. Well, on time from when they put them into the AP system. The attractions of the game are clear. The budget holder can massage budget compliance while claiming he is managing the

The value of an environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) strategy

Your correspondent attended a regularly held symposium at London Business School focused on all things PE. The event was held under the Chatham House rule. Unsurprisingly the world of business rarely changes irrespective of an ownership structure. Market volatility, investor fads, talent management are familiar of course, but what caught my eye was a weighty segment of the day devoted to ESG. The academic perspective featured some LBS research that was illuminating. Corporations not governments can be the agents of change (world’s 10 largest companies by revenue bigger than 180 smallest countries’ combined gdp) All the research suggests that using

Australia’s New Payments Platform – a guide for the international treasurer

Australia has recently followed the lead of the UK’s Fast Payments Service and Singapore’s Fast and Secure Transfers to introduce its own real time payments service – the New Payments Platform (NPP). The NPP will provide significant advances in the ability to transfer Australian dollars, within country, relative to the existing payment platforms available. Key features of NPP payments are: Payments are virtually instantaneous – with a service level agreement that funds will reach the beneficiary’s account in approximately 10-15 seconds There is no limit on the size of transactions which the NPP can process subject to the correspondent bank

Well worth venturing out in the snow for

Under the title ‘Brexit – the final countdown’ and with just over one year left until ‘Brexit date’ on 29 March 2019, the ACT breakfast briefing on 1 March centred around the key question: what will Brexit mean for corporate treasurers? Well worth venturing out in the snow for This was the succinct description of the event by one of the delegates. And despite what were probably the most adverse weather conditions in which the ACT has ever run an event in London, the very respectable delegate turnout proved once again our membership’s high interest in Brexit implications on corporate

IFRS 9: hedge accounting heaven or hell?

IFRS9 was billed as being heaven-sent to corporates who undertake to hedge market risks, presenting not only new opportunities to hedge many more exposures but also to make current hedging mechanics that bit easier. And if IAS39 had never existed, heaven IFRS9 would certainly be. Unfortunately, IAS39 did exist and has done so since 1998. Having become familiar with IAS39, IFRS9 Hedge Accounting adoption may turn out to be hell for some corporates. Systems, auditors, hedge documentation and treasury policies have evolved to ensure compliance with IAS39. Those just about getting comfortable with IAS39, including myself, who do not expect