July 14th, 2014
A Fitch Ratings report says it’s unlikely the United States will adopt the complete International Financial Reporting Standards any time soon.
Parts of the standards may be accepted, but hurdles remain in three joint project areas – financial instruments, insurance and leasing.
Fitch says the (U.S.) Financial Accounting Standards Board and the International Accounting Standards Board are finding differences in financial products and in how to apply the standards to be the key challenges to adopting the standards for financial instruments. U.S. accounting representatives to the joint projects also raised concerns about the likelihood that the insurance standards affect both insurers and non-insuring issuers. Read the rest of this entry »
May 22nd, 2014
It’s become so fashionable to bash the value of an MBA that there must be a touch of schadenfreude in the accounts of once highly paid professionals sending out resumes for jobs paying half — or less — than what they previously earned.
Yet the situation is hardly as dire as many of the reports would have us believe. While it is true that demand for MBAs has declined, an analysis of online job postings by Wanted Analytics found the reduction in the last few months was only 3% over the year before. That’s far better than the alarming report last fall from Michigan State’s Collegiate Employment Research Center, which predicted MBA hiring would plummet 25%. Read the rest of this entry »
December 24th, 2013
Optimism is running high among CFOs and other top finance executives who say 2014 is going to be a good year for the country, their own company, and hiring. The annual Business Outlook Survey by the Association for Financial Professionals found 52% of finance executives predicting the year may get off to a bumpy start, but it will pick up steam in the second half. This is the largest percentage of optimists since before the recession in 2008. The largest share expect the year will see a 2.1% growth in GDP. But 11 percent are are even more positive, and predict a 3% rise in overall national growth. The survey also revealed that finance executives now expect their companies to begin hiring, both in U.S. and abroad, with 43% anticipating expanding U.S. payrolls. AFPOnline.org
December 3rd, 2013
Do you know how much your company spends processing invoices? Twenty percent spend between $6 and $15 per bill, while a surprising 7.3% spend more than $16, up to $25 for each invoice.
A report on the cost of A/P processing says companies that process paper invoices could save significantly by switching to an electronic processing system. How much? Well, a survey by Iron Mountain says 31.1% of firms processing electronic invoices spend less than $2 per. Compare that to the 12.2% of their paper using counterparts who spend that little.
By going electronic, a mere .5% of companies spend from $16 to $25 per invoice.
CFODailyNews.com says companies don’t even have to fully automate to see savings. “In fact,” writes Jennifer Azara, “Many companies find they have better success with a phase-in approach rather than making all their suppliers jump in with both feet.”
December 1st, 2013
In a world where buy and sell orders can be executed in milliseconds and billions of dollars can be moved around the globe in less time than it takes to read this article, one type of transaction remains true to the world of pen and ink. Prospective investors in hedge funds almost universally must complete printed application forms that often can be 50 or more pages.
And that’s only part of it. Hard copies of bank statements, investment reports, tax returns, passports, and more had to be submitted with the application. All this, then, is reviewed by fund administrators and manually entered into the fund’s electronic system before a dime can be transferred. Read the rest of this entry »
November 1st, 2013
Finance leaders of some of the world’s largest companies are growing ever more concerned about their ability to recruit, retain and develop talent in their finance organizations. While nearly three-quarters of them have a talent strategy, 4-in-10 admit they are not optimistic about meeting talent demands in the future. Deloitte’s 2013 Global Finance Talent Survey found that “that the talent strategies in place today are insufficient, and finance leaders are finding them difficult to execute.” What’s more finance departments are finding themselves in a time of significant change, asked to meet new business needs and to work more closely — collaborate and partner — than they ever have before. However, Deloitte reports that finance departments were not designed for partnering and most have not placed much emphasis on those skills in hiring. Now, finance has new talent needs. Deloitte’s report examines the question: “Business leaders are inviting the finance team to step into a more strategic role,
but is finance ready to deliver?” Deloitte
September 4th, 2013
Private equity investment funds can be held liable for the unfunded pension liabilities of their portfolio companies under a decision by a federal appeals court in Boston.
Ruling that equity funds are engaged in a “trade or business” under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), the court overturned a district court decision to the contrary. Read the rest of this entry »
August 13th, 2013
Confidence among U.S. finance and accounting workers spiked nearly 10 points in the 2nd quarter to 63.1, the highest since 2007, according to the Finance and Accounting Employee Confidence Index.
Overall confidence increased 9.7 points to a six-year index high of 63.1. It’s the highest confidence level among all the industries tracked by Randstad in the quarter, which include engineering, IT and healthcare. The Index is compiled by The Mergis Group, a Randstad subsidiary. Read the rest of this entry »
August 6th, 2013
The 100 largest alternative investment managers controlled more than $3.1 trillion at the end of 2012, with real estate managers handling the largest share.
The Global Alternatives Survey, compiled by Towers Watson, found real estate funds had 34% of the total global investment, followed by direct private equity fund managers with 23% ($717 billion). Hedge funds and funds of hedge funds had $612 billion and $176 billion respectively.
Pension funds, by far, comprise the largest share of the total, accounting for 36% of the total assets managed by the 100 largest managers. The next largest share, at 19%, comes from wealth managers; insurance companies, at 9%, rank third. Fifteen years ago, pension fund assets amounted to just 5%. Read the rest of this entry »
April 26th, 2013
With 80% of companies in the U.S. using an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, and accounting software so ubiquitous and sophisticated even novices can keep books, you would think an accountant’s job would have gotten easier.
Not so. Remarkably, two-thirds of U.S. businesses still reconcile accounts manually, contributing to an average 48 hour workweek for management-level accounting and finance workers. Even non-management staff are putting in an average of 42 hours. Read the rest of this entry »