Posts

Credit Risk Manager CBA Europe N.V. @ Commonwealth Bank

The Credit Risk Manager is responsible for independent credit risk management and oversight of the CBA Europe N.V. risk portfolio. The credit risk portfolio covers multiple industry segments.

CBA Europe N.V. is a public limited company (Naamloze Vennootschap) in the Netherlands and a subsidiary in formation of Commonwealth Bank of Australia “CBA”, an Australian banking corporation.

In the future CBA Europe N.V. intends to become a fully licensed “credit institution”, with authorization by De Nederlandsche Bank (“DNB”), the Dutch Central Bank, to undertake banking business and investment services and activities.

CBA Europe N.V. is part of CBA’s wholesale banking division, Institutional Banking and Markets (IB&M).

The CBA Europe N.V. team has a start-up mentality being pro-active and entrepreneurial.We are committed to investing in our people, systems, processes and policies to ensure our workplace is Diverse and Inclusive, and expect our people to work together to achieve a culture that supports this commitment.

About Institutional Banking & Markets

The IB&M division serves the financial needs of large institutions and governments across Australia and New Zealand and in select international markets, such as Europe. IB&M’s Purpose reflects the unique and pivotal role it plays for the CBA Group and Australian economy: “IB&M combines global connectivity and capability to build a better Australia”. The division is the CBA Group’s centre of excellence for high-value, low frequency, client-tailored solutions. It provides clients with access to capital, risk management solutions and facilitates cross-border trade and capital flows.

About CBA Europe N.V

CBA Europe N.V’s sole focus is on the IB&M division and its wholesale clients. Maintaining a presence in the European market is critical for the CBA Group as it provides the global capability and connectivity that is required to build a better Australia. It supports this by acting as the European gateway to Australia and New Zealand for investment and bilateral trade. To achieve this aim, IB&M focuses on its connections within and unique understanding of the Australian corporate landscape.

Credit Risk Management is part of the Risk Management of CBA Europe N.V. and covers independent credit risk assessment and oversight, reporting, policy development and regulatory governance within CBA Europe N.V.

As we are building up our envisaged banking operations we are recruiting an experienced Credit Risk Manager. This role will be an integral part of setting up the Risk Management infrastructure of CBA Europe N.V., including the setup of key processes and procedures, as well as supporting relevant system implementations.

This role reports to the Head of Credit Risk of CBA Europe N.V. and works together with the Credit Risk Management teams in London and Sydney.

The Credit Risk Manager is responsible for independent credit risk management and oversight of the CBA Europe N.V. risk portfolio. The credit risk portfolio covers multiple industry segments.

The role requires a proactive approach to customer focus, combined with an ongoing assessment of the credit risk process and the credit risk portfolio.

Your Responsibilities

  • Provide advice and credit assessment on credit profile and structuring, risk appetite, policy and process for credit proposals of CBA Europe N.V.;
  • Approve credits up to the designated Personal Credit Approval Authority (PCAA). For clients outside the designated PCAA, recommend as required and providing specialist advice and input to the local Risk Committee or where required to Group;
  • Management of the Credit Risk portfolio of CBA Europe N.V., produce reports and insights that will enable the Bank to proactively manage its exposures in the respective sectors;
  • Contribute to the annual ICAAP processes, providing detail for the Credit Risk Management sections, and support and review calculations as necessary;
  • Prepare Regulatory Reporting and Reviews in regards to the credit risk portfolio;
  • Regularly review the Credit Risk Management governance and reporting frameworks and systems;
  • Providing support and advice to IB&M on European credit risk management issues;
  • Create and maintain a robust control environment;
  • Provide training and development to members in the Risk team and more broadly across the team as required;
  • Act as a trusted advisor to Management and the business;
  • Participate in ad hoc (cross-functional) projects;
  • Positively contribute and collaborate with the CBA group stakeholders;
  • Seek opportunities to discover best practice across the industry and share relevant market and industry intelligence with Management and the wider CBA Group Credit Risk teams.

Your Education, Experience And Skills

  • Master degree;
  • Demonstration of a high level of career on-the-job training (through external providers or in-house at major financial institutions);
  • Proven experience in a risk position exercising credit delegation in a major financial institution with at least 5 years knowledge and experience in credit risk management in institutional banking;
  • Product and documentation knowledge across corporate lending, structured finance, global markets and treasury products;
  • Experience across the key sectors CBA Europe N.V. is operating in: Shipping, Aviation, Natural Resources, Financial Institutions;
  • Experience in Board reporting and Regulatory Reporting;
  • Experience in the performance of ICAAP in a Dutch/European context;
  • Strong stakeholder, customer management and communication skills;
  • Knowledge of Dutch risk regulations;
  • Experience working across an international environment;
  • Ability to adapt and excel in a start-up environment.

If you’re already part of the Commonwealth Bank Group (including Bankwest), you’ll need to apply through Sidekick to submit a valid application. We’re keen to support you with the next step in your career.

We’re aware of some accessibility issues on this site, particularly for screen reader users. We want to make finding your dream job as easy as possible, so if you require additional support please contact HR Direct on 1800 989 696.

Advertising End Date: 30/07/2020

Cultural differences and Trade Finance

| 20-07-2020 | Ger van Rosmalen | treasuryXL

What do Trade Finance and Cultural Differences have in common?
If you want to do business internationally, it is important to understand which risks you could encounter. These are not only payment or transport risks, but certainly also communication risks

This blog is in Dutch language.

Over betaal-en transport risico’s laten mensen zich graag voorlichten en op dat punt gaat men graag met de opgedane kennis aan de slag. Toch levert dat niet altijd het beoogde resultaat op. Hoe komt dat dan? Vaak denken wij Nederlanders met onze buitenlandse zakenpartners hele goede gesprekken te voeren terwijl de nuances van de gesprekspartners volledig aan ons voorbij gaan. We begrijpen niet dat er iets anders bedoeld wordt dan wat er wordt gezegd. Dan kan het zomaar gebeuren dat de deal aan je neus voorbij gaat.

(H)erkennen

Erkennen en herkennen dat er culturele verschillen zijn is een goed startpunt. De volgende stap is hoe maak ik mij die kennis eigen en hoe ga ik dat toepassen in mijn dagelijks werk? Kennis vergaren is kennis in huis halen door gebruik te maken van ervaren trainers/docenten die de cultuur van het bedrijf als startpunt nemen om je vervolgens mee te nemen in jouw wereld van internationaal zakendoen. Met welke delen van de wereld doe je zaken? Leren hoe je met die zakenpartners op een effectieve manier kunt communiceren. Dat kan zijn als je elkaar ontmoet of per email, videoconference of telefoongesprek spreekt. In ieder van deze communicatievormen zijn andere aandachtspunten waar je rekening mee kan houden. Immers bij een telefoongesprek spreek je elkaar maar zie je elkaar niet en gaat het om een andere vorm van communicatie dan wanneer je elkaar via een video conference spreekt. Nu zie je elkaar ook en kan jouw zakenpartner ineens non-verbale signalen afgeven die je in een telefoongesprek niet had gezien.

Culturele verschillen binnen het bedrijf

Culturele verschillen is in mijn ogen een ondergewaardeerd onderwerp in het internationaal zakendoen. Ik ben er van overtuigd wat het bedrijven kan brengen en heb diverse trainingen mogen bijwonen bij bedrijven. Er ging een wereld voor de mensen open, zoveel voorbeelden van miscommunicatie, elkaar niet begrijpen en soms herkenning als voorbeelden worden gegeven hoe het mis kan gaan en ik mensen zie lachen die dergelijke situatie hebben meegemaakt. Ik heb ook een keer een training bijgewoond bij een groot internationaal bedrijf waar ik dagvoorzitter was. Doel was om te praten over culturele verschillen als je over de hele wereld zaken doet. Er waren 20 deelnemers met 18 verschillende nationaliteiten. Het bleek dat culturele verschillen binnen het bedrijf zelf al een groot probleem bleek te zijn. Collega’s die elkaar niet begrijpen, die dicht klappen als wij “Hollanders” de druk even stevig opvoeren. Ik kan u vertellen de trainer heeft die dag niet gesproken over culturele verschillen met buitenlandse zakenpartners maar wel over culturele verschillen binnen het bedrijf. Het was een openbaring en verademing voor de deelnemers om daar over te kunnen spreken. Deelnemers die vanuit hun culturele achtergrond niet snel op de voorgrond zullen treden konden en mochten zich uitspreken. Het is een zeer openhartige training geworden wat de collegialiteit een enorme positieve boost heeft gegeven.

 

Wil je meer weten hoe een beter begrip van culturele verschillen jou verder kan helpen?
Neem dan contact op

 

 

Ger van Rosmalen

Trade Finance Specialist

 

 

Going Cash-Free: Is it Right for You?

09-07-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Let’s try something. Reach out to your friends, family, or roommates and ask if anyone has $50 they could loan you. Did anyone have that much money on them? Or did they say that they needed to go to the bank, or ask if they could electronically transfer you the money?
In recent years, it’s become increasingly common for people to not carry cash around with them, or to just carry a little bit in the case of emergencies. While there are exceptions, the majority of consumers have moved to using their credit and debit cards and other forms of electronic, cashless payment.

At the end of 2019, 70% of consumers in a survey answered that they preferred card payments to cash, with 38% of card users citing inconvenience as the main reason they preferred cards to cash. And it’s not just consumers who are looking to go cashless. Corporations like Starbucks, Sweet-green, and even Amazon have all implemented cashless measures at their physical locations. Whether you’re tired of the inconvenience of cash, want to keep track of your transactions, or you’re worried about the possibility of your cash carrying germs, you may be considering taking your payments completely cashless. Let’s take a look at what that could mean for you going forward.

Why go cashless?

Many people around the world have enjoyed the benefits of transitioning away from cash and toward electronic payment methods. These are some of the most popular reasons for making the switch:

  • It’s convenient. No more lugging that heavy wallet around, and no more digging around trying to find the right bills. If you’re short on time and want a quick transaction, all you need to do is swipe a card.
  • It leaves a paper trail. Does anyone keep a record of every single time they pay with cash? When you pay electronically, on the other hand, you have a built-in record of everything you’ve purchased, when you purchased it, and how much it cost. If you’re trying to budget, this makes it easier for you to see exactly how much you’re spending and where your money’s going. Or if your balance is lower than you expected, you’ll be able to see where the money went—or if your account information has been compromised.
  • Some cards come with benefits.From discounts to rewards, cash-back points, airline miles, and more, using your card frequently now could bring you a lot of benefits in the future.

Why you might want to keep a little cash

Even as technology continues to advance, it’s not likely that cash is going anywhere anytime soon. 88% of surveyed consumers stated that they still use cash sometimes, and here’s why:

  • Data security and privacy are a concern. With technological advancement comes new data security worries, and the world of payments is not an exception. E-commerce sites can be breached, and card information can be stolen. Or, after buying online, you might start seeing targeted advertisements based on your purchase and search history.
  • Cashless payment isn’t always a guarantee. Some vendors (particularly smaller, local businesses) only take cash. Or if they accept card payments, they might have a required minimum or add a small additional service fee to the transaction. Or maybe a store or restaurant’s card reader could go down for the day, and you’ll need to find an ATM. It might be small now, but these fees can quickly add up—and your card might end up being more of an inconvenience in these establishments.
  • You could spend more! When you have cash in your wallet, it’s easy to keep track of how much you have left, and how much you’ve spent. When all you need to do is swipe your card, it can be easy to lose track of what you’ve purchased and what’s left in your account.

Could my cash be contaminated?

In the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic, this has been a question on everyone’s minds. Can cash carry the virus? Which payment method is the least likely to put you at risk of cross-contamination?

You’ve been told to try to avoid coming into contact with high-touch surfaces (such as door handles, handrails, and tables). Since cash frequently changes hands, you might be worried about the chances of your money carrying some harmful germs.

It’s true: coins and bills can potentially carry viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens. It’s not the most common method of transmission, but it can potentially happen. If it gives you peace of mind and makes you feel less anxious about the possibility of cross-contamination, prioritize electronic payment and card payments, since your credit and debit cards can be wiped down. If you do need to handle cash, wear gloves if possible, and always wash your hands after coming into contact with new, potentially infectious objects.

In conclusion…

From buying a house to transferring money overseas, there are a few situations where paying with cash obviously isn’t the best move. If you enjoy the convenience of electronic payments and want to make the transition into a completely cashless lifestyle, you’re not the only one ready to make the switch. As long as you know what works for your purchases and your lifestyle, there’s no reason not to explore alternate methods of payment.

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 multi billion-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

 

 

 

Overwhelmed by FX Administration? Your Provider Can Help With That

02-07-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Foreign exchange isn’t always about the big trades. For many organizations that deal with international currencies, they find that their FX needs start small. It may not seem like it, but your routine, day-to-day operations could be a larger FX risk exposure than you think.

Whether your ordinary operations are taking up time and resources that could—and should—be devoted to other matters or your current processes aren’t as efficient as they could be, one important step to managing your organization’s FX risk is taking a look at how your organization is handling transactions.

If you feel that you’re having trouble handling your transaction volume or you’re not handling your international payments as well as you could be, don’t worry: this is where your FX provider can help you out.

What can go wrong with day-to-day transactions?

Depending on how many your business makes each day, these typical, everyday operations could be taking up a large portion of your business’s time and resources. This time and resources could be more valuably spent elsewhere. Assess your operations and think carefully—are there any areas of your business that you think you’re neglecting because of how much time you need to devote to minute transactions? Are you missing out on the bigger picture because you’re too focused on the small things? When you assess your foreign exchange risk exposures, remember to consider everyday operations as well as the larger scope.

In addition, elaborate, inconvenient processes could end up causing trouble for your business. If, for example, you rely on employees to take care of manual data entry or transactions, there’s always the chance that human error could cause some unnecessary delays, or worse.

This is a common problem for fast-growing SMEs. Founders and owners want to monitor international payments and ensure that everything is being taken care of according to their standards, but they don’t have the time to monitor and physically process everything the way they’d like to.

Who should you turn to in order to ensure that your payments are being taken care of in a way that is efficient but still effective and up to your standards? This is where your FX provider comes in.

How can your foreign exchange provider help?

As we’ve said before, your foreign exchange provider does much more than help you find the best exchange rates. FX providers offer a wide range of products and services to assist their clients with their overseas payments, and one of these services is processing (or even automating) payments.

For example, your provider may be able to create a system that grants some users administrator rights to do the processing work while reserving payment authority for specific individuals. They can also offer secure, reliable, and straightforward processing, and they should be able to help you trace delayed payments. Depending on the volume and nature of your payments, they may also be able to help you automate them, or at least vastly cut down on the amount of time and resources it takes to make a transaction.

Finding the right solutions can take time, and it starts with the right FX provider. If your current provider doesn’t offer these solutions, or you haven’t found theirs to be as effective as you’d like, it’s important to shop around until you can find the provider that can help you to manage the administrative side of your transactions while maintaining the right level of quality and security.

At XE, they provide a broad range of currency services and products to businesses around the world. XE experts will work with you to ensure that your foreign exchange procedures are the right ones for your business and its needs.

 

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

 

 

 

Alternative Risk Finance in a hardening insurance market

| 30-06-2020 | Mark Roelands | treasuryXL

Insurance premium rates are reported to increase on average with about 2% in Europe, confirming the overall market trend of a hardening insurance market. Some markets have, however, seen double-digit growth in premiums, like D&O and Motor Third Party Liability. Other markets witnessed important coverage elements actually being excluded from cover, making the premium comparison apples and pears. As Covid-19 is impacting claims experience across all lines as well as causing negative investment returns, the hardening insurance market trend is expected to continue and get worse in 2020. Premium increases are to be expected and retention levels are expected to be increased.

It is therefore critical to work with your insurance broker in time to understand and mitigate effects for the treasury and insurance function. What is the action plan when retentions are being driven upwards or when cover is disappearing? What alternatives are available next to traditional insurance? Will your organisation be forced to retain risk above the risk appetite or accept double digit premium increases?
Although retaining additional risk may not be the worst solution, as premium increases may not reflect the actual risk that is being transferred and there are awareness benefits to being exposed to risks, the possibility to transfer alternatively is very valuable in the current hardening market.

Captive insurance

A captive is an in-house insurer, enabling efficient and centralized risk pooling while providing cover to operating companies and thereby bridging the gap between corporate and local risk appetite. Key arguments for establishing a captive are to smooth the impact of hardening insurance markets as well as provide additional flexibility in cover. The current market environment is therefore a textbook example for establishing an insurance entity. However, a captive is a licensed insurance company that comes with added costs and a compliance burden. This is especially true since Solvency II became active in 2016. As a general rule of thumb a minimum threshold of captive premium of EUR 2Mio would be required for a Dutch based captive, allowing for claims expenses (70-80% claims ratio), operating costs as well as building some reserves. Establishing a captive in other jurisdictions can make sense, as the route to licensing might still be feasible in 2020 (for the Netherlands at least 6 months are to be expected) as well as the opportunity of some more light-weight operational structures.

An interesting alternative to the fully owned, traditional captive is a Cell Company; either an Incorporated Cell Company (ICC) or Protected Cell Company (PCC). These alternatives provide the benefit of a shared structure (including initial capitalisation) and enable a ring-fenced environment for your organisation. In order to arrange that ring-fencing, specific legislation is required, which is found in Malta in the EU. Guernsey (leaving tax considerations aside) might be very interesting as well. Ireland and Luxemburg did give some hints for establishing cell company legislation but after Brexit this was delayed indefinitely. A Cell Company can provide the same functionality as a fully owned captive, but treasury and insurance will have to work with legal and tax to get a solid business case in place in order to address questions proactively.
Both Aon-Willis and Marsh have Cell Companies and would be able to assist, but insurers can also facilitate this (which has a lock-in effect) while there are also more independent providers like Artex, SRS (completing the top 5 of largest captive managers 2020) and firms like Atlas or Robus which can potentially be of added value as well.

Parametric Insurance

Next to captive insurance, parametric insurance is a promising route to follow.
Parametric insurance has historically been connected to weather insurance (e.g. rainfall exceeding a threshold leading to a pay-out) as well as longevity cover for pension funds (in the form of Insurance Linked Securities, Longevity Swaps). Parametric products enable a highly transparent and quick risk transfer and enable the route to other markets than the insurance market. A parametric product can be structured in an insurance structure but in a derivative structure as well. Conceptually an insurance-linked derivative will not be different than the plain vanilla currency instruments that are traded.

Covid is also attracting significant attention for parametric cover, as lockdown measures can be clear-cut triggers for parametric cover. Most importantly, for parametric cover clear risk information and data analysis is required and both are increasingly available. Increasingly better data and analysis techniques enable to minimise basis risk i.e. the risk in which an incident occurs but the derivative trigger is not being met. For instance site-specific weather stations are set up to ensure rainfall or water level at your organisations’ sites are being monitored. Increasingly, non-weather risks are being covered, for instance Ryskex GmbH and Axis Capital have worked together to develop  parametric cyber-insurance cover.

Where traditional insurance has deductibles and exclusions, parametric risk transfer has basis risk which needs to be managed. Next to that other operational processes may be impacted, claims management for instance and therefore it is recommended to make a well founded and analysed decision.

Roadmap

Starting financing risks in a different manner is not a decision to be made in isolation and to be done quickly. It is a structural decision requiring a structured approach. In our practice, we use our Risk Finance Framework which is composed of (1) Foundation, the objectives to be met (2) People & Organisation, matching the organisation, policies and people involved (3) Processes, adaptive, effective and efficient (4) Data and Technology, the business case based on solid risk information.

In our view, this provides a very practical and structured approach allowing stakeholders like tax and legal to be involved throughout the process. Back planning from a January renewal date, it is critical that conversations with your broker and insurers are taking place in order to ensure no last-minute surprises are presented as a treasury or Insurance professional. In parallel, the (internal) business case can be analysed in order to make a decision.

Therefore, it is recommended to start preparations early, or actually on an asap basis.
Alternative Risk Financing can be highly interesting, but it is not an instant go-to solution and requires some preparations.

 

 

Mark Roelands

Risk and Compliance Specialist

 

 

How Can Your Business Address FX Risk?

25-06-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Last week, we encouraged businesses like yours to look beyond currency exchange rates when developing your foreign exchange risk management procedures. This week, we want to take that discussion a little further: what else is out there for businesses looking to improve their FX risk management? One common misconception is assuming that FX risk management is more narrow than it is. That is to say, many businesses might think that any FX strategy beyond purchasing the required currencies at the current spot rates would be currency market speculation. The truth is, there is a wide range of foreign exchange tools for businesses to reduce their risk exposures and improve their operations.

What about hedging?

Of all of the FX strategies and tools, hedging may be the most widely misunderstood. It’s a common misconception that currency hedging serves to second-guess how foreign exchange markets could potentially move in the coming days and weeks, but that’s not its. In FX risk management, hedging is a valuable tool to help insure the business against possible unfavorable movements caused by market volatility. It’s one aspect of a comprehensive FX risk management plan, not the entire strategy.

Like any other strategy, the importance of hedging for your business depends on your business and its exposures. Depending on your FX risk exposures, your organization may not need to make hedging a central part of its risk management plans. Your FX risk management strategies shouldn’t be based on a generalized idea of currency risk; they need to fit your organization’s unique risk profile.

What other products are available?

In short, this will depend on the FX provider. When researching FX providers, don’t just ask them about the rates they offer or what kind of advice they can provide on hedging strategies. Take some time to read up on the full suite of products and services they offer, and consider whether they would be valuable for your business both in the day-to-day and in the long-term.

At Xe, a number of products and services are offered to businesses to aid in their international payments as well as their FX risk, available as a standalone or API. Some of our products include:

Don’t go too far—in the coming weeks, we’ll be taking a closer look at our business offerings and the benefits they could bring to your operation.

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

 

 

 

Trade Finance and ICC Incoterms

| 24-06-2020 | Ger van Rosmalen | treasuryXL

Still up to date every day: “yes do not worry sir, the container will arrive within a few weeks, i hope, it is now the rain season and roads are like rivers”. Many logistics managers are not waiting for these kinds of messages and the irritation grows when they wonders what ***** of Sales has had in mind to deliver this customer on a DAP basis.

This blog is in Dutch language.

De frustratie van iedere logistieke of customer service medewerker is als Sales iets verkoopt zonder zich echt bewust te zijn van de gevolgen en implicaties van die afgesloten deal.

Sales wil geen risico nemen als het op betalen aankomt en heeft van de koper in de binnenlanden van een Afrikaans land wel een Letter of Credit (L/C) als zekerheid gevraagd. De koper wilde die zekerheid wel geven maar dan moesten de goederen wel op DAP basis afgeleverd worden. “Geen punt” volgens Sales.

DAP wil zeggen “Delivered at Place” dus de verkoper moet alle kosten en risico’s voor zijn rekening nemen voor aflevering van de goederen op die overeengekomen plaats ergens in de binnenlanden van dat Afrikaanse land! Sales gaat er maar vanuit dat Logistiek het wel regelt maar weet niet wat voor onmogelijke uitdaging dit is als je je realiseert dat in Afrika sommige geasfalteerde wegen zomaar 5 km buiten de stad overgaan in onverharde moeilijk begaanbare wegen! Zo ook in deze casus, de dure machine moet eerst nog afgeleverd worden in de binnenlanden van dat Afrikaanse land want daar vindt het overdrachtsmoment plaats, aflevering van de machine door afgifte van een “Goods receipt” dat later onder het L/C aangeboden moet worden om betaling te verkrijgen onder het L/C!

Het was toch echt slimmer geweest om de machine af te leveren op basis van een andere  Incoterm, liever geen E- of F-term, maar bij voorkeur een Incoterm uit de C-Groep, maar welke? Het is belangrijk dat iedereen binnen het bedrijf, Sales, Finance en Logistiek de impact begrijpen van iedere afgesproken Incoterm.

Het bepalen van Incoterms strategie bij inkoop en verkoop is maatwerk; praat er over met een specialist!

 

 

 

Ger van Rosmalen

Trade Finance Specialist

 

 

FX Risk: It’s Not Just About the Exchange Rates

18-06-2020 | treasuryXL | XE |

Let’s face it: for individuals and businesses alike, exchange rates are one of the most important factors of international money transfer. Having a favorable exchange rate can make a significant difference in how much money you need to provide in your payments, and knowing that you’ll always get a good rate can make a difference in your day-to-day transactions as well as your long-term strategic planning.

However, in the world of FX and FX risk management, one common mistake we see is businesses solely looking at the rates they can get from their FX providers, and failing to look past the rate to other determining factors. But what are these factors, and what should businesses really be looking for in their FX providers?

Why shouldn’t you only look at the rates?

To clarify: we aren’t saying that you shouldn’t look at the rates offered by potential providers. They just aren’t the only thing that will affect your business’s exposure to currency risk.

FX providers don’t just help you make currency exchanges. They offer a wide range of other products and services to help organizations manage their international payments as well as manage their FX risk, and having a narrow focus on the exchange rates can prevent you from seeing the bigger picture and understanding how the FX provider can help your business as a whole.

Think about all of the ways in which your business engages with international currencies, and look at all of your potential FX risk exposures. They don’t all have to do with the exchange rates, right? The right provider for your organization will have product offerings that address your organization’s specific needs.

It’s also important to assess potential providers with a discerning eye, and with the mantra, “If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.” If a provider offers fantastic rates that noticeably stand out from the rates offered by the competition, carefully consider why that might be. Are they able to offer these fantastic rates at the cost of offering other essential products and services to their clients? Don’t be afraid to ask the detailed questions.

Rate comparisons can also be misleading. The foreign exchange markets are constantly moving, and it’s not uncommon for the rates to change multiple times per day. Unless you’re comparing rates at one precise moment, it’s possible that you don’t have a completely accurate comparison between the two. A rate that looks stronger now might not be that way in a few hours.

As a final note, keep in mind that one service that many foreign exchange providers offer is watching the rates for you. If there is a particular rate that your business wants for its transactions, look into providers with a “rate alert” option so you won’t spend all of your time being preoccupied by checking for the best rate.

What else should you look for?

So now that we’ve established that rates aren’t the only offering you should look for, you’re probably wondering what else you should be looking for. Ultimately, that depends on your foreign exchange risk and what your business is looking for.

Once you’ve created your FX risk management policy, consider what your organization can’t do alone. That’s where your foreign exchange provider can help you. Some of the features you might want to look for include:

  • Specialized services for your sector or business operations
  • Support services to aid when something goes wrong
  • Comprehensive online services that can be accessed anywhere, any time of day
  • Transparency and clear communication
  • Services that can simplify complex business processes
  • Fast transaction speeds

Don’t be afraid to shop around for the right foreign exchange provider. If you want the best solutions for your business, it might take some time before you find the provider that has the expertise and products to address your risks.

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

 

 

 

Trade Finance and Compliance | How to properly assess risks

| 15-06-2020 | Ger van Rosmalen | treasuryXL

“As a result of the stricter regulations, the financial sector has been forced to hire large numbers of people. Then, in practice, after intensive investigation on every report, it appears that more than 99% of the cases are false alarms! This results in frustrating and mind-numbing work for highly skilled workers.”  Now the combination of Trade Finance and Compliance / AML (Anti Money Laundering) has been my focus for some time. I was always assuming that Compliance / AML supports the business (customers / products), but because of the stricter regulations, I think the business appears to be supportive of Compliance / AML.

This blog is in Dutch language.

Als je kijkt naar Trade Finance dan zie je dat de definitie vanuit de toezichthouder(s) en de vooraanstaande Wolfsberg Group een breed begrip is. Onder standaard Trade Finance Producten worden verstaan:

  • Documentair Betalingsverkeer: zoals Letters of Credit en Documentaire Incasso’s. Bij deze standaard producten wordt gewerkt met handelsdocumenten zoals facturen, vervoersdocumenten, verzekeringsdocumenten en oorsprongsdocumenten. Door banken wordt gecontroleerd of deze in overeenstemming zijn met de onderliggende handelstransactie. Daarnaast zijn deze producten onderworpen aan internationale regelgeving uitgevaardigd door de ICC Internationale Kamer van Koophandel. Deze regels samen met de gebruikelijke internationale bancaire praktijk hebben ervoor gezorgd dat de banken de “financial crime“ risico’s beter kunnen controleren.
  • Open Account: betalingen; het overgrote deel van de wereldhandel wordt afgewikkeld op “open account” waarbij er een simpele betaling plaatsvindt via het bancaire betalingssysteem voor geleverde goederen of diensten. Hier is de betrokkenheid van de banken ten opzichte van de onder punt 1 genoemde producten gelimiteerd tot de afhandeling van een zogenoemde “clean payment” en is men zich niet altijd bewust van de onderliggende transactie. Banken kunnen hier slechts de standaard AML en sanctie screening op de betaling uitvoeren.

Onder “financial crime” risico wordt verstaan o.a. witwassen, fraude, belasting ontduiking, omkoping, corruptie en terrorismefinanciering. De algemene perceptie is dat Trade Finance door de toezichthouders wordt gezien als een hoog risico. Maar in hoeverre klopt dit? Ten aanzien van “Open Account” betalingen is dit in veel gevallen juist en ben ik van mening dat we juist alert moeten zijn op het hoog risico bij “Open Account” betalingen. Echter in de gesprekken die ik had met de toezichthouder werd “Documentair Betalingsverkeer” juist gekwalificeerd als een normaal risico.

Het verschil zit hem voornamelijk in de mogelijkheden om bij documentair betalingsverkeer veel meer controles te kunnen uitvoeren”, wat bij “open account” betalingen niet het geval is. Veel van de genoemde risico’s bij Trade Finance om illegale verplaatsing van gelden te maskeren zijn bij “open account” zeer hoog. Denk hierbij aan: over-facturering, onder-facturering, meerdere facturen, te weinig verscheept, teveel verscheept, opzettelijke verduistering van het type goederen en spookverschepingen.

Al deze bovengenoemde aspecten worden bij “Documentair Betalingsverkeer” veel eerder gesignaleerd omdat de fysieke handelsdocumenten uitgebreid door de banken worden gecontroleerd. In de eerder genoemde gesprekken met de toezichthouder merk ik een grote nuancering. Waar de toezichthouder spreekt over “richtlijnen” worden deze bij Compliance afdelingen vaak vertaald in eisen en regels. Banken zeggen te voldoen aan de regels (of waren het richtlijnen?) van de toezichthouder en vaak ook The Wolfsberg Group principles.
Wat is The Wolfsberg Group? Zie hieronder de beschrijving die ik op hun website heb gevonden:

“The Wolfsberg Group is an association of thirteen global banks which aims to develop frameworks and guidance for the management of financial crime risks, particularly with respect to Know Your Customer, Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorist Financing policies”.

Saillant detail: Het verbaast mij dan weer wel dat een simpele Googlecheck snel laat zien dat alle van de 13 genoemde banken boetes hebben gekregen voor het niet naleven van hun eigen “principles”.

Duizenden mensen zijn inmiddels aangenomen om 99% nutteloze checks te doen omdat we wel graag die 1% duistere praktijken boven water willen halen. Daar zijn niet alleen de banken de dupe van maar ook het grootste deel van het bedrijfsleven wat te goeder trouw zijn transacties wil afwikkelen. Belangrijk is dan ook dat bij Trade Finance transacties altijd een importeur of exporteur betrokken is, die relatie is van een bank. Het is essentieel dat de bank de ondernemer én zijn onderneming én activiteiten goed begrijpt! Toezichthouders verwachten van de banken dat zij de kennis van handelstransacties kunnen vertalen naar risico’s. Een gevolg kan zijn dat banken een intensiever contact onderhouden met klanten en er meer informatie-uitwisseling zal moeten plaatsvinden. Daarnaast is het van belang dat de beoordeling van risico’s wordt gedaan aan de hand van objectieve criteria en de persoonlijke mening van beoordelaars niet de boventoon mag voeren. Dit is onethisch en onprofessioneel.

Twee voorbeelden uit de praktijk ter verduidelijking

  1. Heel jammer dat een bank een Letter of Credit transactie van een ondernemer met een Afrikaans land niet wilde faciliteren alleen op basis van het feit dat ze amper te eten hebben in dat land!
  2. Of dat de export van gebruikte vrachtauto’s naar een politiek stabiel land ook op Letter of Credit basis niet werd goedgekeurd met als reden dat deze voertuigen zouden kunnen worden omgebouwd tot militair voertuig. Dit werd slechts gebaseerd op een persoonlijke veronderstelling en getuigt bovendien van gebrek aan kennis van zaken. Temeer ook omdat de betreffende exporteur zelf gebruik maakt van een geavanceerd Compliance/AML/Sanctie systeem vergelijkbaar met wat de banken zelf ook gebruiken en zelfs goede contacten heeft met het FIU ( Financial Intelligence Unit Nederland) inzake verdachte transacties.

Dat niet alles door systemen wordt afgevangen mag dit voorbeeld duidelijk maken waarbij een Nederlandse exporteur een “Open Account” betaling ontvangt van een Duits Ingenieursbureau en zonder “red flags” op de rekening wordt geboekt. Achteraf bleek dat de betaling weliswaar uit Duitsland kwam maar dat de goederen direct naar een (dubieuze) Scheepswerf in Rusland werden getransporteerd. Het grootste risico zie ik altijd nog bij de “open account” betalingen. En door vooral in gesprek te blijven met relaties, aandacht voor de klant, weten wat er speelt en gezond verstand laten prevaleren samen met geavanceerde (Compliance/AML/Sanctie) systemen die ongebruikelijke transacties zichtbaar maken zou Compliance in mijn ogen weer ondersteunend moeten worden aan de business (klanten en producten) en niet andersom.

Conclusie

Ook ondernemers doen er goed aan om hun eigen verantwoordelijkheid te nemen en te beseffen, dat men niet meer wegkomt met een simpele Googlecheck en wat financiële data om een relatie met een nieuwe afnemer of leverancier aan te gaan. Het is voor een bank een geruststelling als de relatie aantoont dat zij zorgvuldig te werk gaat en gebruik maakt van ook voor het MKB beschikbare Compliance/AML/Sanctie software. Toegang tot deze informatie voordat je een handtekening onder een contract zet helpt niet alleen van financiële risico’s te beperken maar beschermt ook de reputatie van de ondernemer.

De internationale handel is zeker in deze uitdagende coronatijd gebaat bij een optimaal samenspel tussen de toezichthouder met duidelijke heldere richtlijnen, banken die deze vertalen naar werkbare procedures en ondernemers die de noodzaak van extra controles begrijpen en daarnaar handelen. Zo kunnen we samen ondernemend Nederland nog beter stimuleren in dat waar we van oudsher goed in zijn, succesvol handel drijven in binnen én buitenland.

 

 

Ger van Rosmalen

Trade Finance Specialist