How to Recognize and Avoid Online Fraud Attempts

02-04-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

It’s safe to say that we all have a lot on our minds right now. Unfortunately, whenever there’s a situation that causes people to feel uneasy and panicked, there will be fraudsters and criminals who take advantage.

We have recently seen a surge in demand for our services, and in that surge there have also been vulnerable customers that have been manipulated by opportunists. In addition, the recent uptick in fully remote and online work has also opened doors for online scam and fraud attempts.

At XE, keeping our customers and their personal information safe is our greatest priority. We want to help you to protect yourself from fraud attempts. Take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with some of the most common online scams, and read through our tips to keep yourself and your loved ones safe from fraudulent activity.

Phishing emails

Last year, Microsoft reported that phishing attacks were the greatest online security threat by far, having increased by 250 percent since their previous report.

Usually coming by email, these attacks encourage you to click on a link or attachment and download malicious software, which attacks your device and hacks access to your files. You may also receive an email from someone posing as a trusted figure (such as your employer or a reputable company) and asking you to provide sensitive information.

How to handle these: Verify everything. Reach out to the sender or the company and confirm that this email did come from them. It takes just a few moments, but it can have a huge impact.

Banking and online account scams

Take extra caution when reading an email from a bank. Many scammers send emails or texts that appear to be sent from your bank, highlighting a problem with your account. Often, they will request a verification of your details to resolve the problem. Once they have your details…you can imagine the rest.

How to handle these: Call your bank directly to clarify the issue. Never submit your personal details to this email, or to any email. Most reputable providers will not ask you for sensitive information over email, so that should be an immediate red flag.

Online shopping scams

Online shopping was already on the rise, and now that people are taking the majority of their shopping online, scams in this area have become more prevalent. Scams include selling faulty products, attempting to sell a product to gain bank details, and promising goods at a low price (only for those goods to never arrive and the site to close down after taking your money).

How to handle these: Use your head. If it’s a site or store that you’ve never heard of, research the company and see if you can find verified reviews from other customers. Ask yourself: “Does this seem too good to be true?” If it does, then proceed with caution.

Lottery, competition and inheritance schemes

Say you receive emails stating that you have won monetary prizes in competitions you did not enter, or messages from people overseas claiming that you have inherited money. These are just attempts to obtain your personal details.

How to handle these: Ask yourself, “Did I enter a competition? Do I know these people?” As much as we’d like to believe the fairy tales, winning or inheriting money completely out of the blue is not likely to happen. Once again: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Charity scams

Scams that take advantage of good-natured individuals often make a special appearance around the holiday season, but these could be active at any time of the year. Scammers will pretend to work for a charitable cause and may even exploit news of a current crisis. Scams surrounding COVID-19 are already in circulation, and seek to prey on people’s fears.

How to handle these: Do your research. If you plan to make a donation, make sure you know who you’re donating to and what your donation will be used for. If possible, make donations only through reputable organizations’ secure sites.

How can you avoid future scams?

When it comes to avoiding online scams, there are some key precautions that everyone should take. Pass these along to your friends, family, and clients, and take a critical eye in your own online habits.

  1. Read every email carefully. Emails are the most common scam vehicle. One way to check whether the message is from a reputable source is by checking the URL before you click. Extra characters and misspellings could both point to a suspicious link. If you’re still not sure, treat it as you would any other scam email. If it’s a sender who claims to know you, check with them before sending money or information.
  2. Never agree to send money to anyone you have only met online. Sending money online is not something you should take chances on. Don’t send anyone money unless you know them personally and are certain that they are legitimate.
  3. Never make a financial decision based on a phone call you receive from a person posing as a relative of someone in prison. This is a common scam that relies on you panicking and rushing to send money as quickly as possible. Take a second to consider the situation. Odds are, it won’t make sense once you think about it. If you’re still unsure, verify the situation with another relative or friend.
  4. Never share login credentials with anyone online. No matter what they promise to do for you in return. No reputable organization will ask you for this information.
  5. Be wary of unsolicited contact. If you don’t know the person or organization who has just contacted you, be cautious while you verify who they are. Don’t respond or provide them with anything until you know they’re legitimate.
  6. Update your devices. If you haven’t been doing this regularly, now is definitely the time to ensure that all of your devices are updated with the latest security measures.

We hope this information helps you and your loved ones to stay safe online. If you need anything, our team is here to help.

Neville Lacey

Global Risk and Compliance Director at XE

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page

 

 

 

How to build your emergency fund

26-03-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Emergency situations often strike with very little warning, leaving you very without much time to adapt or plan. Over this past week, people across the world have made major adjustments to their lives in order to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. From organizations shifting to remote work to government-mandated lockdowns, the world this week is a far cry from what many of us thought to be the norm just a month ago.

Money is one of the greatest concerns for individuals during this uncertain time (along with health). A recent poll found that in the United States alone, 18 percent of people have lost jobs or hours. As more and more governments continue to issue orders to shelter at home, lockdown, or quarantine, this figure will only rise in the coming weeks.

Today, it’s the coronavirus. In the future, there’s always the possibility of a natural disaster or other large-scale emergency forcing you to readjust your habits, spending, and way of life. But for this current situation, here’s some of our advice for budgeting and preparing.

Cash or card?

This has been a common question among people concerned about the spread of coronavirus. Some think that it’s good to have a stash of emergency cash. It prevents you from having to worry about a power outage or business shutdown affecting your bank access, and paying in cash means you won’t be handling your card after it’s been in strangers’ hands or touching the same card reader that everyone’s been touching.

On the other hand, some have raised questions about the possibility of spreading COVID-19 through the exchange of cash, particularly if they’re exchanging bills at busy establishments. However, Emily Martin, associate professor of epidemiology from the University of Michigan School of Public Health, stated to the Wall Street Journal that she “wouldn’t expect coronavirus to travel far and wide on money.”

So, what’s the answer? It doesn’t hurt to have a few days’ worth of emergency cash on your person or stashed somewhere safe. However, if going to the ATM or bank would put you or others at risk, don’t make it a priority.

Anything to avoid?

You mean, besides other people?

In times like these, the first instinct is to grab everything, just in case. But this isn’t the best approach. We recommend avoiding the following:

  • Panicking. We know, it sounds ridiculous to tell you to stay calm in a pandemic. But panicking can lead to impulsive, irrational, and irresponsible financial decisions. Take a deep breath and ask yourself, “What do I need to make it through the day? The week? The month?”
  • Buying more than you (and your household) need. As we’ve seen, grocery stores, pharmacies, and other essential establishments will remain open. Take what you need, take a little extra if supplies allow, but don’t hoard. Does one household really need 500 rolls of toilet paper?
  • Bottled water. If (and only if) your tap water isn’t safe to drink, then you should purchase bottled water. Otherwise, you’ll be fine with the faucet.
  • Frivolous purchases. Think of this as an opportunity to look at your spending and subtract from your budget. For example, many of us won’t be going to concerts, festivals, or bars anytime soon. And you probably won’t need to buy as many clothes if you’re spending all of your time at home. If you can, take this money and put it in your savings, or put it toward other, more pressing expenses.

What if I don’t have an emergency fund?

You’re not alone. Though common advice is to have 3 to 6 months’ worth of emergency money in savings, less than one-quarter of people actually have that. If you’re not happy with the state of your emergency savings, get started now. If you are still working and receiving an income, try to adjust your budget to allocate some or more to your savings each month.

Under normal circumstances, here’s what we’d recommend:

  1. Look at your current budget. Figure out how much you’re making, and calculate all of your normal expenses such as rent, bills, and how much you tend to spend on fun non-essentials.
  2. Calculate what you can save. If you have quite a bit of money left over after expenses at the end of each month, you can set your own goal for how much you’d like to shift to savings. If your budget is limited, calculate how much you could feasibly contribute to a savings account each month.
  3. Put your money into a separate account. If your employer pays through direct deposit, set up an automatic deposit to your emergency savings account. Otherwise, deposit it yourself, and hold yourself accountable. You can withdraw if you need to, but don’t skimp on your savings.
  4. Regularly assess your savings plan. Your saving plan shouldn’t stay the same forever. Every so often, take some time to review. You should reassess your budget and plans any time your financial situation changes, as well as a regular review at least once per year.

However, we recognize that now is not a normal circumstance! In our current situation, here’s what you can do to get your emergency fund started ASAP:

  • See what expenses you can cut. Normally, experts recommend canceling Netflix or other streaming services, but we understand if that’s not doable right now! Instead, take a look at reducing gym memberships or shopping expenses, and take a look at your fixed costs if you need to.
  • Sell a few things. If you have some nice pieces in the back of your closet that you rarely wear, or a few video games that you don’t play anymore, selling those online could help you get a little extra money.
  • Can you find additional income? We understand that this is a difficult time to find employment, even more so than usual. However, if you are really hurting from a lack of income right now, look into essential businesses that need more workers or look for remote work. That said, don’t forget to keep your health and safety a priority.

Ultimately? Anything is better than nothing. Don’t think that you need to have an elaborate plan or a large nest egg for your emergency fund. Every fund starts somewhere, and the sooner you start, the sooner yours can start growing.

If you already have an emergency fund…

…and you don’t need to dip into it just yet, take advantage of this time to continue to build yours. If you’ve been able to cut your expenses during those long days at home, take what you would have spent on non-essentials and add it to your rainy day fund. This situation has offered a lot of us a very close look at what can happen to our lives and finances. If you’re managing to get by now, let’s make sure that you’ll still be fine next time.

If you do need to use your emergency fund? Don’t make yourself feel guilty. This is why you created the fund, after all. Take a deep breath, figure out what you’ll need, and let your emergency fund help you through this.

It’s a tough time right now, and many people feel like there’s no end in sight. But this current situation isn’t going to last forever. We can’t control the world’s future, but we can plan ahead for ourselves (along with a bonus backup plan) to help ourselves face future obstacles.

This is an unprecedented and uncertain time for all of us. We understand the impulse to panic, to overspend, and to worry that we may not have enough to stay safe or keep our loved ones safe. But for most of us, all we can do is prepare ourselves and (safely) support others in any way possible.

Good luck!

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page

 

 

 

Webinar and Q&A: Protect your bottom line from further impacts

| 24-03-2020 | XE.com

COVID-19 Webinar and Q&A on Wednesday March 25, 2020 at 5.00 pm – 5.30 pm CET

As the markets react to the global pandemic, the XE teams have been inundated with calls from concerned businesses who are looking for support during this volatility.

Throughout these turbulent times, our partner XE wish to share insights into how businesses with any exposure to international currencies can look to protect their bottom line from further impacts.

Register Now and and submit your questions, and the XE experts will look to answer the common challenges during the live session. XE may not have all of the answers, but they can look to provide some support to issues regarding currency exposure.

Date, time and registration

Date: March 25th, 2020

Start time: 5.00 pm – 5.30 pm CET

Register here

 

Do you a question that you’d like one of the XE Experts to answer during the session? Please provide details and XE will endeavour to respond during the session. You can submit your question at the registration page.

 

 

 

XE shares 5 Best Practices for Working Remotely

19-03-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Within the past few years, remote working has seen a significant rise in workplaces around the world. Some workplaces have shifted to fully remote operations, while others offer remote work as an optional perk for employees with long commutes. Since 2005, remote work has grown by 140 percent, and many employees identify remote work opportunities as a major perk when considering whether to work for a company.

More recently, within the past few weeks in fact, remote work has gone from a modern workplace perk to a necessity for businesses concerned about protecting their customers and employees from the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus). For the office workers who are now carrying out their duties from home and the managers who are now virtually leading spread-out, remote teams, this presents a difficult new challenge.

To remain safe and healthy during this uncertain situation, XE wanted to take this time to share some of their advice for those of you who’ve suddenly been thrust into working (and managing) from home.

1. Keep a structure.

It’s easy to stick to a schedule in an office. Even if you don’t have set hours, there’s usually at least a clear window for when it’s time to work and when you’re off duty. When you’re working remotely, it can be hard to maintain the same level of organization.

  • Set work hours. If working hours haven’t already been established by your employer, establish set working hours. Treat these hours like you would any other hours at work. You wouldn’t stop working in the middle of the day to spend a couple of hours reading or gaming, right? And this goes both ways—in addition to establishing when you’re on the clock, make sure to give yourself the same hours off that you would normally have.
  • Establish your workspace. Even if you don’t have your own personal office, you can take over your desk or clear out a spot at your table and dub it the “work zone”. Do you normally like to spread out across your desk in the office? Find a way to do the same at home.
  • Don’t get distracted by household chores.It’s one thing to take 30 seconds to move the laundry from the washer to the dryer, or to check on the pot roast in your slow cooker. It’s another to vacuum the living room or make a quick pharmacy run during “work” hours. Make sure to focus on your work. It can be difficult if you have family members home with you, but find a way to communicate that you’re at work and not to be disturbed—whether it’s a sign on the door, a locked door, or a pair of noise-cancelling headphones.

2. Communicate everything.

Suddenly, it’s no longer as easy as leaning over to ask your teammate a question or stopping by another coworker’s office for a quick catch-up. Most conversations will happen in writing, and the lack of body language, facial expression, and intonation can easily breed misunderstanding.

You don’t need to micromanage, but you should aim to communicate more frequently and more specifically than usual. What would seem clear in a face-to-face session might not be as clear in a quick email, and you won’t have the benefit of overhearing pertinent conversations when you’re working remotely. Ask yourself: is there any ambiguity here? Could anything I’m saying possibly be misunderstood? Odds are, you’ll be able to say yes to both questions. Communicate as frequently as possible. There’s no such thing as too many details.

3. Take measures to prevent isolation.

In addition to putting a jump on your business communications, don’t forget to frequently reach out to your team on a personal level. In 2018, 21 percent of remote workers reported that they were concerned about feeling isolated, not just informationally but also socially.

We’re not encouraging you to put yourself or anyone else at risk. But along with frequently reaching out to other members of your team to communicate and collaborate, consider other ways to boost connectivity. Some managers have implemented “team lunch” conference calls for everyone on their team to virtually eat together and catch up. While this may not be feasible for your team to do every day or even every week, talk with your team and work out some ways to create socialization.

4. Be patient.

Let’s face it. Technology has revolutionized the modern workplace, but it can create its fair share of issues. Just this morning, the massive influx of remote workers in Europe caused Microsoft Teams’ chat tool to briefly go down.

These events can be frustrating, but they are inevitable when working from home, and even more so when you and your colleagues are not accustomed to regular remote work. Understand that technical difficulties are bound to happen—especially within these initial days—and that some people may take some time to adjust to the new status quo. It can be easy to get annoyed, but think instead of what you can do to help your teammates through the transition.

5. Take time to breathe.

New updates about coronavirus are constantly pouring in, and it can be easy to feel distracted and even overwhelmed by the news, particularly for those who have preexisting health problems or worry about the safety of their loved ones.

In most office settings, you’re free to step out for some air if you need a breather. Just because you’re not in the office doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t let yourself have breaks if you’re feeling overwhelmed. Build breaks into your schedule and communicate with your team and managers if things are growing difficult for you.

For managers and higher-level employees, make sure to check in with your teams and direct reports during this tumultuous time. This is an uncertain, overwhelming, and even scary time for a lot of people, and it can be hard to focus on everyday work in these circumstances. Be mindful of the situation and aim to work with your teams, not against them.

For many of us, this is one of the most frightening, challenging things we have experienced in our adult lives. Along with taking the right measures to stay hygienic and prevent the further spread of pathogens, the best thing we can do right now is work together to ensure that our customers and those relying on us have our full support, with whatever we can offer.

Source

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page

 

 

 

Currency Moves Caught You Off-Guard? You’re Not Alone.

12-03-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

In the past few years, the financial markets had just about lulled participants to sleep. Equity markets delivered steady returns, interest rates remained low, and global currencies adhered to ranges and experienced relatively muted volatility. But that’s no longer the case.

You’re not alone if you were jolted awake by all the recent market volatility. Few anticipated the unprecedented market movements of the past three weeks.

There was no definitive announcement on February 14 that in three weeks’ time:

  • US equity markets would plunge, taking the DJIA, Nasdaq, and S&P 500 all down nearly -25% at their lows,
  • The US Federal Reserve would execute a surprise 50 bp rate cut,
  • US 10-year and 30-year bonds would fall to record low yields, and
  • Oil prices would plummet -26% in one day after OPEC and Russia fail to reach an oil production accord.

Yet all of these events happened, leaving corporate finance departments, treasury groups, CFOs, and business owners to contend with the consequences.

Since February 21, three of the most commonly used currencies by North American corporations (CAD, EUR and JPY) have seen moves of 3.6% to 9.5%. Here’s a summary of the moves:

  • CAD -3.6% weaker against USD, trading above 1.3700 for the first time in nearly two years. What triggered this? The unexpected oil price plunge which was exacerbated by continued equity sell-off. Just three weeks ago, the CAD was at 1.3205.
  • EUR +6.1% against USD, trading at 1.1495 on March 9 after being at 1.0785 just three weeks ago. Exporters can enjoy both the 6% rise in spot and also the forward point premium, which makes locking in forward rates attractive. Importers have been left wondering what to do. Many decision-makers are frozen, hoping the spot rate will reverse. The charts remind us that just one year ago, EUR was at 1.1500 and two years ago 1.2400.
  • JPY +9.5% against USD, made more stunning as the JPY had a surprise 2% weakening to 112.00 on Feb 21 following weak GDP data, to only to be reversed dramatically by coronavirus safe-haven flows. These took the JPY to below 102.00 on March 9 with incredible speed. To quantify this, the FX option market which use FX Option volatility as a key measure, has seen 1-month JPY ATM option volatility spike nearly 10% (unheard of!) to 21.5% after being 11.8% on Friday.

 

What’s the takeaway from all this?

As a business, it’s important to recognize that FX risk is real and has many potential impacts to your results. Regardless of whether your company benefited or was hurt by these market moves, FX risk can:

  • Raise import costs,
  • Reduce export sales margins,
  • Make your product less competitive, and
  • Possibly disrupt your 2020 business plans.

To illustrate the financial risk, here are example payables or receivables denominated in CAD, EUR, and JPY. There is the P/L impact looking at both 2/21 to 3/9 period, as well as considering if the currency trends continue:

If P/L swings of this magnitude cause you corporate nausea, please know you can take actions to mitigate them. FX volatility is a risk you can manage.

 

Source

 

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page

 

 

 

What’s Money Transfer Really About?

05-03-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

There are some situations where cash just won’t cut it. This is where we enter the wonderful world of money transfer. What is money transfer? It’s simple: it’s any form of payment that doesn’t involve cash.

Money transfer comes in two forms: payment and transfer. When you use you debit card at a store or your boss gives you your paycheck through direct deposit, you’re experiencing small-scale money transfer. When you’re sending money to another account or person, whether it’s across town or across the world, you’re also making a transfer.

When would you need an international money transfer? If you’re:

  • Purchasing property overseas
  • Sending tuition or spending money to a student studying abroad
  • Making an international move
  • Preparing for an exotic trip

…then money transfer is the way to go. Your money is in good company: experts estimate more than $2.5 quadrillion moves around the world each year.

Don’t let the technical details overwhelm you. Online money transfer is a quick, simple, and secure process for any of your currency exchange needs.

Is one money transfer method better than the others?

If you’ve been looking into making a transfer, there’s no doubt you’ve run across several different methods for your transfer. In addition to money transfer, you’ve probably also heard about:

  • Wire transfer
  • Money order
  • Balance exchange
  • Bank transfer

These options may seem more or less interchangeable—after all, at the end of the day, your money is moving where it needs to go, so does it really matter how it gets there?

Yes, it absolutely does. Choosing a money transfer over some of these other methods can influence:

  • The speed of your transfer
  • Your currency exchange rate
  • Whether or not you incur any additional fees during your transfer
  • The ease of the process
  • The amount you can transfer
  • Where you can transfer
  • The currencies you can exchange.

When you make a money transfer through Xe, you can trust that your money will reach its destination quickly, securely, and with no tacked-on fees.

Source

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page

 

 

 

Coronavirus Concerns See Equity Markets Suffer As Investors Head for Safe Havens

27-02-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Coronavirus took the headlines again with the World Health Organisation warning that the world should prepare for a pandemic. The WHO stated it was too early to call the outbreak a pandemic but countries should be “in a phase of preparedness”. As with before, the Dollar and Swiss Franc are benefiting from their safe-haven status, with CHF hitting a 4-year high against the EUR. Both strengthened against most major currencies, as risk-averse investors fear that if the virus becomes a pandemic it will have a significant negative impact on global growth.

GBP/USD fluctuated around 1.29 for the day, despite US Equities collapsing yesterday, as investors adopt a risk off approach. Long-term bond rates fell sharply as worries about a recession increased. The 10-year treasury note is not far from its 2016 record low of 1.32%. In turn, Gold has continued to climb higher, hitting fresh multi-year highs and edging ever closer to the $1,700 mark. Despite the fear amongst wall street, the US Dollar has shrugged off the negativity as it moved higher thanks to its safe-haven status.

EUR/USD moved towards 52-week lows yesterday, falling to 1.0804 yesterday. Coronavirus related events in Italy had affected the EUR, with around 50,000 people under lockdown and the death toll rising to four. The pair   however recovered towards the end of the day, hitting one-week highs of 1.0850 as the S&P 500 closed in on the low of 2020.

GBP/EUR appears to be relatively stable as investors assess the impact of coronavirus to be potentially greater within Europe than it is in the UK. Also, news that the UK budget – which is due to be announced on March 11th – could be bigger than expected should help the Pound remain relatively well supported against the Euro and other major currencies. In the meantime, the market keeps one eye on the build up to the UK-EU trade talks, due to commence next week. Some potentially positive news for the Pound yesterday was reports that the EU’s latest draft mandate indicates the EU will not be pushing for ‘dynamic alignment’. Dynamic alignment is essentially a requirement for the UK to adhere to a certain set of laws and standards, set by the EU, in order to have a free-trade agreement. Today, the EU leaders will be holding a general affairs council, with the Brexit Strategy on the agenda. This could provide greater detail around the EU’s position ahead of next weeks’ talks, any demands that may emerge from the agenda could have implications for the Pound.

Source

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

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Huge number of countries with an array of recession forecasts

20-02-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Widespread weakness continues to weigh on a huge number of countries with an array of recession forecasts in the wake of global weakness due to pandemic, trade wars and trade deleveraging.

Hong Kong having slipped into recession last year seems as if this is likely to be repeated in the wake of the Coronavirus and months of political unrest. Hong Kong GDP already contracted at an alarming 3.2% in the middle of 2019 and key signals from economic data are already pointing at a continued slow-down of their fiscal situation. Japan is widely believed to enter a recessive environment as well suffering a huge typhoon and then a big tax increase and straight away afterwards the virus also affected their growth. There is a chance the UK could slip into recession following a protracted Brexit process and, if trade deals are not as positive as expected, the additional costs will threaten growth during the course of the year. Germany produced a string of contracting economic figures during the end of 2019 as it wore a sustained decline in manufacturing sector and auto sales. Italy was in a technical recession for half of 2018 and has not really recovered where they have seen weak productivity, big debt figures and unemployment and these do not appear to be being restored quickly. China continued to slow during the trade war and this led to a forecast of GDP growth of 5.8% which sounds very high, but when compared to the figures of 6.6% and 6.1% in the last two years respectively it is certainly a big reduction. Add to these, significant stresses in the economies of Turkey, Argentina, Iran, Mexico and Brazil and the picture for global growth could be gloomy.

In the UK, the situation is finely balanced and after the prolonged Brexit situation our attention returns to stalwart economic data production. We saw prints in jobs and earnings data and there are small positive signs there as earnings rose slightly. We are waiting for inflation data which will be a potent conversation in context of the UK’s buoyancy. Expectations are a significant rise in Retail Price Index figures year on year but a reduction month on month. Consumer Price Index figures are pointing at a slight increase year on year but a big reduction month on month. Lastly, Producer Price Index looks set to largely balance out so that is good news for the near future if forecasts proves to be accurate.

Looking over the pond at the US inflation and housing data, there appears a mixed bag of results expected. Housing starts seem to have an expectation of a big contraction but there looks as if the Producer Price Index data will be a move higher, which will push an increase in costs to consumers over time and increase inflation more generally but this has a likelihood to manifest in the requirement of tools to mute this price pressure, namely interest rate hikes. This would need to be a sustained factor for this conversation to play out in this way within the Federal Reserve.

Source

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page

 

 

 

Inflation Data for EURUSD

13-02-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Markets have once again turned risk averse overnight, with the Chinese city of Hubei the latest outbreak focus. With a European tech conference cancelled, as well as fears in South Korea and Japan. The medium and long-term impacts are still non quantified. Currency markets do not like uncertainty.

And so, the now go-to bellwether currency is the USD, which moved above the psychological level of 99.00 which has been touted for some days. As a consequence most currency pairs have moved lower against the Greenback. One of the more notable casualties is the most liquid pair – EURUSD. Generally regarded as a low volatility play, it’s has now moved down over 13.5 % in the last two years, and tests key support.

GBPEUR has gained momentarily as a result, and indeed UK importers can be buoyed by a much healthier session for GBP across the board. Risk bearing currencies like AUD, NZD and CAD have all suffered as a by-product, and will be dictated to by Geopolitical fears related to the Coronavirus outbreak.

Yesterday did not help the EUR on the data from with Industrial production numbers much lower than expected at -2.1%, a huge shift. And this fragility for the single currency will today be magnified by German CPI inflation releases. For the EURUSD traded pair, the release of US CPI inflation numbers later in the session could have a similar push/pull impact.

Back to the UK and today we see PM Boris Johnson reshuffle his cabinet, and whilst not significantly market moving; the emphasis will be closely eyed for negotiations with Brussels.

One final thing to note is the release this morning of the RICS house price balance numbers here in the UK. This number has shown a positive swing, the post UK. election decision clearly has people moving on up. Long may it continue.

 

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page

 

 

 

Why your Business Needs a Long-Term Strategy to Mitigate Against Currency Risk

06-02-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Market volatility puts your business’ profitability and cashflow at risk to adverse movements in the currency you are exposed to.

Many businesses, particularly at the smaller end, are not aware they have an exposure to foreign exchange risk. Or, if they are, they may have never quantified the size of the risk they face.

Currency market exposure comes in different forms. Any business selling goods and services overseas will be concerned that a rise in the value of the US Dollar could damage their competitiveness in those markets. Conversely, if you’re importing anything from overseas, a fall in the value of your local currency will make those imports more expensive.

FX markets are difficult to forecast at any time, but even more so when you look beyond 6 months. While economists and market commentators can predict all they want, the reality is they never get it consistently right which makes relying on forecasts a risky strategy for your business.

How your business can mitigate against currency risk

Your best bet in combating the uncertainty that comes with fluctuating exchange rates is to have a long-term FX strategy in place.

An FX strategy involves paying attention to and managing risk, and ensuring your business has the right mix of products and services in place to help reduce your exposure to market fluctuations.

This is where working with a trusted international payments provider, like XE, comes into play. The right provider will be able to work with you to develop a strategy and will advise on the most suitable products and services to deliver favorable outcomes to your business’ profitability.

Ready to learn more?

A team of Foreign Exchange Specialists at XE have compiled an essential FX guide for US businesses – stepping you through the three key factors to understand about foreign exchange and how it affects your business, so you can make an informed choice when selecting the right partner to help you manage your international payments and mitigate against FX risk.

Get in touch with XE.com

About XE.com

XE can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. XE Business Solutions provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help businesses access competitive rates with greater control.

Deciding when to make an international payment and at what rate can be critical. XE Business Solutions work with businesses to protect bottom-line from exchange rate fluctuations, while the currency experts and risk management specialists act as eyes and ears in the market to protect your profits from the world’s volatile currency markets.

Your company money is safe with XE, their NASDAQ listed parent company, Euronet Worldwide Inc., has a multibillion-dollar market capitalization, and an investment grade credit rating. With offices in the UK, Canada, Europe, APAC and North America they have a truly global coverage.

Are you curious to know more about XE?
Maurits Houthoff, senior business development manager at XE.com, is always in for a cup of coffee, mail or call to provide you detailed information.

 

 

Visit XE.com

Visit XE partner page