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Opinions and views from expert CFOZone members.

Tag >> risk management
Dec 01

CFOs must better communicate global risk management strategy

Posted by dbedell in risk mitigationrisk managementRiskcompliancechief financial officerCFO



Although chief financial officers, risk managers, and other corporate executives recognize the importance of strategic risk management, many are as yet unable to put it into full practice and linking it effectively with overall corporate strategy is a still-elusive goal.

Nov 24

Caterpillar issues Yuan-denominated paper

Posted by Stephen Taub in yuan-denominated bond, risk managementRisk, renminbi, Hong Kong, debtDealsChina

Stephen Taub

China is slowing making inroads into another major market--debt underwriting.

Caterpillar said its financial services subsidiary raised about $150 million in a yuan (also known as renminbi) denominated medium term note. The issuance was conducted in Hong Kong and bought by institutional investors.

Nov 11

What boards expect from their CFOs these days

Posted by annearf in risk managementRiskFM GlobalCFOcareerboard of directors


Attention finance executives: The relationship between CFOs and their boards is changing significantly from what it was a few years ago. And to be effective, you'd be wise to prepare yourself to address the questions and issues boards are focused on.

That's according to Jeff Burchill, CFO and senior vice president of FM Global, the Johnston, RI, insurance giant.  Burchill says that after the economy tanked in 2008, boards switched from a focus on top-line growth and winning market share to an emphasis on cost containment--whether to close facilities, for example, or which assets to dispose of--for obvious reasons. But now, the interest is swinging back to strategy and top-line growth. (Burchill plans to discuss these observations in more depth at the MIT Sloan CFO Forum in Boston later this month).

Nov 04

Bank risk management is still important

Posted by dbedell in risk managementRiskFDICcounterparty riskCDS spreadsCashBanksAite Group


Even as companies begin to show signs of optimism in the state of the economy, and as the Fed announces the investment of a further $600 billion into quantitative easing, it is important for businesses to remember that the US banking markets are still at risk, and to manage that risk accordingly.

Of the more than 7,000 banks that make up the smaller banking market in the US, there have already been 139 failures this year, according to data from the FDIC, highlighting the importance of actively monitoring risk with your banking partners.

Oct 25

Improve proxy statements to better define risk management

Posted by dbedell in S&P; 500risk oversightrisk managementRiskDeloittecorporate governancecompliance


Companies are focused on compliance with new proxy disclosure rules, but they may not be providing the whole picture of the company’s risk management strategy, according to a new report out by corporate advisory firm Deloitte.

In analyzing proxy statements by 398 S&P 500 companies, Deloitte found that although companies were meeting basic compliance requirements for risk oversight, they fell short of providing vital information on risk management practices—information which could provide greater comfort to regulators, investors and other stakeholders into risk mitigation efforts at the company.

Oct 14

Women on corporate boards: More open to change than men

Posted by annearf in risk managementdirectorscorporate boardscompensationcareer/managementboards


 Does it really make any difference if there are more women on boards? 

 A study from Heidrick & Struggles and WomenCorporateDirectors of 400 directors indicates the answer is "probably", at least if you're talking about attitudes towards a number of important issues.  On the one hand, it found that men and women directors respond in much the same way to some key topics.  At the same time, there are a quite a few notable issues where male and female directors most definitely seem to be on Mars and Venus.

Sep 15

Wall Street's Tea Party

Posted by Stephen Taub in risk management, ISS, Institutional Shareholder Serviceshostile takeoverDealsCashBarnes & Noble

Stephen Taub

Voters are not the only ones mad as hell and willing to throw out incumbents, no matter the qualifications or smarts of the challenger.

Shareholders are also apparently upset with seemingly entrenched management they deem unresponsive to their interests.

Aug 11

Bank risk management needs improvement

Posted by dbedell in risk managementrisk analyticsRiskeuropecounterparty riskbank failures


Bankers in Europe are not confident in their risk management practices, according to a recent study by Oracle.

The study of 450 financial services and IT professionals at European banks found that almost half of respondents reported that they lacked confidence in the accuracy of counterparty and risk data that they used for risk analysis-a disturbing figure given the ongoing financial concerns in the region.

Jul 23

Retirement plans shift focus

Posted by dbedell in risk managementRisk, retirement benefits, Pension Protection Actiondefined contribution plansdefined benefit plansCash


US companies have undergone a big shift in how they are structuring retirement benefits packages for new employees in order to reduce cost and risk, according to a study by consultancy Towers Watson.

The study, which encompassed 642 US companies and data from 1998 to 2008, analyzed changes to defined benefit (DB), defined contribution (DC), retiree medical and retiree life insurance plans. It showed that companies across a range of industries are shifting from defined benefit to defined contribution plans, and are reducing overall benefits to new salaried employees.

Jul 22

Building microfinance into an asset class

Posted by dbedell in small businessrisk managementRiskmicrofinanceDealscorporate governance


The $44 billion global microfinance industry got a boost recently as private equity investor BlueOrchard attracted $195 million to a new fund aimed at helping microfinance lenders modernize their organizations, improve governance and risk management, and develop into fully-fledged financial institutions.

The knock-on effect is that as the industry as a whole becomes more standardized, with stronger, regulated and rated institutions, this should attract more investment and help turn microfinance into a recognized asset class, which in turn is good news for small businesses both in the US and globally that benefit from microfinance lending.

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