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Will the next Treasurer be a (mobile) computer?

| 27-9-2017 | Bas Kolenburg |

It’s in the genes of Treasurers to look ahead, to predict what will be around the corner and to anticipate on the icebergs that your company may hit in the future.

But what about the forecast of the position of the Treasurer itself? Buzzwords these days are disruption, digitization, blockchain, outsourcing, 3D printing, how computers and robots are transforming whole value chains and are taking over ’our’ jobs. So why not replace the guy or girl in “the ivory tower” who is negotiating with banks, takes care of the bank accounts and manages the financial risks of the business? Will there be a disruptive event or technological development that will replace the human Treasurer in the future?

In short my answer is no, but I am certain that the function of Treasurer will be materially different form current and recent historic practice.

Look what already happened between for instance the 1980s till now and how new developments and technological improvements changed the daily life of the Treasurer. Can you imagine to be a Treasurer in the 1980s without a computer trying to generate a daily total cash balance to your CFO adding up all paper daily statements in various currencies on a manual basis? Or running a cash pool notional or physical with frequent cash sweeping combining decentralized entrepeneurship and central grip on cash? Or try to have decent discussion on the cash conversion cycle with all relevant stakeholders and trying to improve the supply chain from a stack of paper sheets?

So in the last 40 years the life of a Treasurer changed already rapidly and dramatically. And that in a world where significant risks and volatility seem to be the new world order. The risks are plentiful: volatile commodity prices, geopolitical changes, higher debt levels, negative interest rates, liquidity bubbles created by central banks to name a few.

But what is ahead of us? I think that the human Treasurer will be there, for a while, for a number of reasons.
1. Systems need to be implemented
In my treasury experience I have not found a single system that was ‘plug and play’. It takes time, funds and resources to get systems do what they need to do. Try to set up a decent TMS within a month? Will be hardly possible.

2. Systems need to communicate with eachother
In a ideal world you have your ERP(s), TMS, trading platform, payment tools, connections to the bank, reconcilation of bank statements working as if it was one system to be managed via one set of buttons. Reality is that all the systems have interfaces that can be complex and need human interference to manage the exceptions from normal practice. I have seen in my career a lot of excel sheets used to manage these interface connections and they are difficult to delete completely.

3. There is no standard business
Very little corporates can say that for the next 10 years or so business, product mix and client base will be the same. So supporting business with the financial risks will need to be customized tailor made as there is no ‘one size fits all’. Although in the future there will be more powerful information tools available to make the right decision.

4. You need to navigate through the wave(s) of regulation
The credit crisis has caused that new rules are introduced almost on a weekly basis. Non compliance to the rules can lead to business disruptions, fines, sanctions and improving transparancy is pivotal to manage these regulations. Humans need to navigate through these regulation jungle.
The stacks of paper required for KYC and anti-money laundering are increasing by the year and it is up to the Treasurer to manage these processes as efficiently as possible.

5. It is key to have access to funding in support of your strategy, business and organisation
Corporates are looking for a more diversified funding base as banks have retrenched from their dominant position from the past. That means that the Treasurer has these days more sources of funding available such as alternative lending, working capital via supply chain financing, foreign capital markets. More sources lead to more complexity which needs human interference to select the best option(s). And although your KPI sheet and fancy business plan can help you with a certain small crowd funding amount, securing financing is still a result from relationship between a financier and a corporate in need of funding.

 

 

Bas Kolenburg

Senior Consultant at Enigma Consulting

 

Business intelligence for cash flows & cash positions

| 10-8-2017 | Treasury Intelligence Solutions GmbH (TIS)  | Sponsored content |

How do strategic professionals decide on the best path to success for their company? The key for strategic finance professionals and the best path to success lies in transparency and real-time reporting across company-wide cash flow and liquidity levels, bank transactions, customer and supplier relations and working capital.

When cash flow visibility is the lifeblood of your company, you want full control and knowledge. Direct access to insights on profitability and potential business risks allow you to make better decisions based on solid business intelligence that is accessible anytime and anywhere. Companies now can experience the power of the Business Discovery Manager – a business intelligence module within the TIS cloud platform. Supplier, salary and treasury payments can be easily analysed along with cash flows, liquidity and working capital via easy-to-use dashboards and reports. The tool, enhanced through state-of-the-art BI technology, enables users to access all strategic insights in a single, flexible, web-based and multi-bank, multi-ERP capable platform, available 24 hours a day from anywhere in the world.

Do you want to find out more about this interesting topic?
Do you want to discover the benefits and functions of the Business Discovery Manager in detail?

Treasury Intelligence Solutions (TIS)

You can request the TIS Factsheet via the red button.

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From Fintech to Regtech… from potentially disruptive to leaner compliance opportunities

| 31-5-2017 | François de Witte |

On 18/5/2017, I attended a seminar covering the topic “From Fintech to Regtech… from potentially disruptive to leaner compliance opportunities” organized by The Finance Club of Brussels, the Free University of Brussels (ULB), the Solvay Finance Society and Thomson Reuters.

Introduction

Fintech describes a wide range of innovation in financial technology, going from payment systems to lending and trading platforms.
Fintechs are seen in many cases as potential disruptors of the traditional intermediation of heavily regulated banks and other financial institutions See also my articles on PSD2 further down.
However Fintechs can also be enablers, helping banks and financial institutions to streamline their regulatory reporting and compliance, or help the disruptors in coping more easily with compliance in the future.

Setting the scene

Fintechs are playing an increasing role. The investments in Fintechs exceeded EUR 25 billion in 2016, and they bring a real digital revolution. Fintechs are perceived to foster the Digital Revolution, but equally to increase the digital divide in our society between the skilled and/or wealthy and those who are not.

Regulatory compliance is time-consuming and expensive for both financial institutions and regulators. The volume of information that parties must monitor and evaluate is enormous. The rules are often complex and difficult to understand and apply. There is a lot of data to be analyzed. Much of the process remains highly labor-intensive, or still depends heavily on manual inputs.

The Regtechs can be considered as an outgrowth of Fintec. Regtech use digital technologies— including big data analytics, cloud computing, robotics, behavioral analysis, blockchain technology and machine learning to facilitate regulatory compliance. Amongst  other things, Regtech applications automate risk management and compliance processes, enable companies to stay aware of regulatory changes around the world, facilitate regulatory reporting and support strategic planning.

In recent years banks have seen opportunities to ask Fintechs to solve their large regulation and compliance issues. They can change the paradigm of banks from heavy IT releases to agile sprints, from integration to standardizing protocols, from static functions to workflows.

Hence financial institutions are more willing to consider using Fintechs for getting more efficiency. During the seminar, somebody of the panel mentioned: “Collaboration is the best innovation”. Banks can also help Fintechs thanks to their experience in managing large databases, managing risks and providing the required critical mass.

We have seen some applications recently in areas such as the KYC (Know Your Customer) domain.

Regtech – some other considerations

However, as mentioned during the seminar by Antonio Garcia Del Riego, Head of EU Corporate Affairs at Banco Santander, in Europe there remain obstacles in using Fintechs. The Bank Regulators in Europe expect the banks to deduct the goodwill from the core capital of the banks. This implies that software investments cannot be capitalized and need to be written off immediately in the P&L. A second challenge is the ability to attract digital talent, given the fact that the regulators limit the way in which the remuneration can be paid, whilst startups can be very creative here.
For the regulators, there also remain challenges. Once banks will have automated their reporting, the regulators will have to follow. They also will have to attract digital talent, to treat all these data in an automated way. If they do not succeed in this, they might challenge the use of Regtechs, and this is not what we want.

Regtechs can potentially offer similar benefits to regulators as they do to financial institutions. We recently observed that some (quite few) Regtech providers have emerged to serve the significant needs of regulators. There have seen recently some examples in Fintechs bringing behavioral models to the regulators, or new cognitive technology or the use of Blockchain technology (smart contracts), to trigger automatic alerts for the regulators when the banks exceed some thresholds.

Some regulators are taking initiatives to foster innovation. In 2016, the FCA (US) created its “regulatory sandbox,” a space where financial services companies are encouraged to test new products without regulatory consequences. Recently the Australian Securities and Investment Commission also created its regulatory sandbox, suggested to establish a new regtech liaison group, comprising industry, technology firms, academics, consultancies, regulators and consumer bodies, and announced that it would host a Regtech hackathon later in 2017.

Other countries have also taken steps to support Fintech and Regtech innovation. The Monetary Authority of Singapore is in the process of developing a regulatory sandbox. We might expect other regulators to also take similar initiatives.

Conclusion

Thanks to their digital technology, Regtechs enable banks and other financial institutions to reduce the burden of compliance. However some steps need to be taken to create a level playing field and some topics will have to be clarified.
One can ask oneself the question how far these innovations can become game changers, awakenings for the banks, or even force them to more transparency and predictability towards regulators.

 

François de Witte – Founder & Senior Consultant at FDW Consult

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More articles on this subject:

PSD 2: A lot of opportunities but also big challenges (Part I)

PSD 2 : The implementation of PSD 2: A lot of opportunities but also big challenges (Part II)

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“Systems om je bank buitenspel te zetten” – Verslag van mijn Financial Systems presentatie

| 23-5-2017 | Pieter de Kiewit |

Dit is een verslag en korte samenvatting van mijn presentatie die ik mocht houden op het Financial Systems evenement. Afgezien van een gênante vertraging door mijn gebrekkige Powerpoint skills was het een prettige sessie afgerond met een pittige discussie tussen experts in de zaal. Eerst een korte samenvatting:

Als Feyenoord fan ben ik dit jaar gelukkig en weet veel van voetbal, ook al speel ik het niet. Daarin ligt een parallel in mijn werk als treasury recruiter. Maandelijks krijg ik van circa 100 experts persoonlijk college en zie een veelvoud aan cv’s. Ik denk dat ik hierdoor inzicht heb in systemen die worden gebruikt om treasury processen te managen en ik zie de afgelopen decennia interessante ontwikkelingen die de laatste jaren in een versnelling zijn geraakt.

Zonder namen te noemen van leveranciers, ik doe geen software sales, heb ik een lijst gemaakt van diensten en producten die de gereedschapskist van de treasurer kunnen vergroten en afhankelijkheid van zijn bank verkleinen. Toen ik deze lijst opstelde, viel me op dat er tussen de vakgebieden cash & werkkapitaal management enerzijds en funding anderzijds interessante ontwikkelingen zijn zoals bankonafhankelijke betaalplatforms, crowdfunding en het bankkosten inzichtelijk maken. In het managen van risk zie je bijvoorbeeld trade finance in blockchain en partijen die FX transacties tegen ongebruikelijk lage marges bieden.

Banken daadwerkelijk buitenspel wordt lastig en is volgens mij ook niet het streven. Banken bashen vind ik een zeer onsympathieke hobby. Daarbij is de Fintech wereld ook nog niet volwassen met alle bijbehorende consequenties. Voor de drukbezette treasurer, voor de DGA en CFO die maar incidenteel te maken hebben met het vakgebied kunnen deze ontwikkelingen nogal onoverzichtelijk zijn. Helaas is er geen oplossing die snel inzicht verschaft. Wel denk ik dat er mooie kansen liggen voor degene die vooraan wil meelopen in ontwikkelingen.

De discussie die zich ontspon tussen financiële lijnmanagers en treasury experts ging, onder andere, over de vraag of bankkosten daadwerkelijk inzichtelijk zijn en wat de toekomstige rol van de banken zal zijn. De Powerpoint presentatie is onder dit artikel opgenomen. Ik verheug me op verdere events waar discussie rond dit thema kan worden verder gevoerd.

Pieter de Kiewit

 

 

Pieter de Kiewit
Owner Treasurer Search

 

 

Klik hier als je de presentatie van de sessie wilt bekijken.

 

 

 

 

Financial Systems 2017 – Event with a Treasury Twist

| 12-5-2017 | Pieter de Kiewit | treasuryXL | Sponsored content |

In 2016 Treasurer Search, as a sponsor partner, was a guest at our booth during the annual event “Financial Systems” in Nieuwegein and they will be present again this year. The event will open its doors on May 18th, and you can read more about this event on https://financial-systems.nl/. We asked our expert Pieter de Kiewit, owner of Treasurer Search to look back on last year’s event and tell us what to expect this year.

Looking back on last year

Last year, we as Treasurer Search (together with treasuryXL) were able to give part of the event a treasury twist by organizing a workshop that was well appreciated. Four interim managers presented their top tips about treasury software selection and implementation (see https://www.treasuryxl.com/news-articles/treasury-technologie-impact-het-kwadraat).

Looking forward to the 18th of May

Everything is prepared and ready to go.This is what we have planned this year.

We will be present again on the stand and information market of treasuryXL. Their stand will be the meeting point for the treasury community. We will again facilitate knowledge exchange and networking. We believe that, between all ERP, bookkeeping, credit management and other systems, there should be room for treasury management systems, cash forecasting software, payment and other software. A treasury pavilion, together with a Fintech component must be worth a visit.

Parallel session together with treasuryXL

As to our parallel session, we were contemplating various topics. Last year’s operational approach was well appreciated, so we will again present the practical aspects of newest technology. This year’s parallel session has the topic “Systems om je bank buitenspel te zetten” (Technology to put your bank at the side-line)
‘Until recently the banker was an indisputed advisor and bank fees were not open for discussion. But times change and technology contributes to this development. It creates possibilities to re-arrange funding, cash and risk management. Costs are safed, risks are limited and information becomes more comprehensible. As specialised recruiter and active member of the treasury community I will share my vision on contemporary, relevant technology with you in an interactive session. What will your next conversation with your bank be about?’

Free registration with code

Admission to the event is free. We do appreciate your visit. When registering via https://financial-systems.nl/aanmelden/, choose the option ‘gratis registreren met code’ and use the following registration code: TXL2017
This will help us analyzing the visitor population and adjust the program to your background.

I look forward to seeing you at Financial Systems, together with treasuryXL,

 

Pieter de Kiewit

 

 

Pieter de Kiewit
Owner Treasurer Search

 

 

Singing from the same hymn sheet

| 26-4-2017 | Hubert Rappold | Sponsored content |

Hubert Rappold from TIPCO Treasury & Technology, puts the case for a treasury information platform (TIP), which acts as an information hub for the treasury department and reduces companies’ reliance on “Excel-based monstrosities” that are doomed to fail.

 

A typical treasury department runs a number of systems: a treasury management system for day-to-day operations, a trading platform, a market information system, electronic banking software and so on. So why on earth would you really need a separate treasury information platform (TIP)? After all, the data already exists in a multitude of other systems. Well, that is certainly true but also part of the challenge. If there is no single place where all the data can come together to create your reports at the press of a button, you will most likely be forced into a mediocre data warehouse solution also used by other departments or into a ‘handmade’ spreadsheet-based solution with all its drawbacks.

On top of that, even in an ideal world, when all your data is in a single system, there are circumstances where it is almost certain that you will need to integrate additional data. Just think about acquisitions. lt usually takes years before the systems are harmonised. So what do you do in the meantime?

Requirements of a TIP

A TIP needs to fulfil a range of requirements in order to satisfy the needs of treasury departments.

  • lt needs to be easy to use
  • lt needs to integrate existing data sources
  • lt needs to have a flexible reporting engine
  • lt needs to be easy to maintain
  • lt needs to be extensible

What happens if these requirements are not fulfilled is quite easy to imagine. Your reporting will be cumbersome, error-prone and data quality will be poor. Ultimately, the reporting project will fail and a new generation of interns will develop yet another Excel-based monstrosity doomed to failure.

Let’s look at these requirements in greater detail:

  • If it is not easy to use, it will not be accepted by your users, resulting in poor data quality and frustration. The benchmarks are spreadsheet­based solutions. If the handling is as easy as in these systems, then your users will be happy.
  • If it does not integrate existing data sources, you force users to duplicate entries, resulting in frustration and hence in poor data quality. Of course this is not a one-way street. Think about the FX exposure captured by your subsidiaries as part of the forecasting process and locally contracted FX transactions. Your risk manager will be more than happy to have this information in his or her treasury management system. Think about payment advices. Collect this information and you can use it to optimise the funding of your cash pools. Your TIP will act as an information hub for the treasury department, passing data back and forth between various systems.
  • If it does not provide a flexible reporting engine, you will not be able to react to ever­changing requests from internal and external sources and will essentially resort to time­consuming, cumbersome and error-prone spreadsheet reporting. Flexible not only means that it covers all functional aspects. lt also means that even without being an IT guru you should get meaningful information out of the system. However, be on your guard if you are told that you will be able to create sophisticated reports within minutes without any training. That only works well in promotional videos. Invest some time in proper training and be the master of your reports.
  • If it is not easy to maintain, you will be frustrated by the administrative overhead of the system instead of working straight on the analysis of the data. lt needs to be straightforward to add new users, companies and company groups. Whether via manual input or interfaces, the data needs to end up in your reporting solution without delay, without reprogramming, and without any external expertise.
  • If it is not extensible, you will be forced to install even more systems if a new function is required, such as cash flow forecasting, bank relationship management and guarantees. Therefore, think ahead. Before selecting a system, clearly state what you want it to do now and in the future.

Outline of system architecture

Below, I have outlined how such a system could fit into your existing system environment and what the interactions are between these components.

The TIP acts as the information hub between the various systems. lt receives and passes on data to and from other systems. Based on this data, all the reports are created without any need for manual consolidation.

Benefits of a TIP

  • The TIP receives the data from other systems and passes it on to other systems. This reduces the number of interfaces between systems and hence the overall complexity.
  • The reports are created from a single common data source. There will never again be any more mismatches between different reports as they are all created from the same set of data.
  • lt becomes less costly and less risky to replace components of your system architecture. If you need to replace one of the components, you can be sure of having a minimal impact on the overall system architecture. If you use a new treasury management system (TMS), you only need to replace a few interfaces between the TIP and the TMS. If you switch to a new market information provider – no problem, just replace the interface to the TIP. lt will pass on the data in the established way to all the other systems involved.
  • lt becomes easier to add new functionality: If you require a new function, for example, cash flow forecasting, it is also easier to update or extend a lightweight TIP instead of relying on the next release cycle of your TMS provider.
  • lt becomes easier to add acquisitions: Even if newly acquired companies are not integrated into your system infrastructure, they can use uploads or simple screens to provide their data.

Selecting a TIP

Usually, a TIP is selected because there is one burning issue that needs to be solved, for example, a group-wide overview of bank accounts or cash flow forecasting. If you select a TIP for any of these functionalities, always ask yourself what could be the next burning issue. These are usually identified by analysing the existing spreadsheet-based solutions. Any of these is a good candidate to be replaced by the TIP.

With this list in mind, look at the existing providers and make sure that they cover all your needs and not only the one that currently causes most of the pain. Also make sure that the system provider has treasury experience. Just think about cash flow forecasting. Most system vendors will tell you that planning is part of their system. However, a closer look will show you that basic functionality is missing; for example, the connection to the financial status as the starting point of the forecast or the display of credit facilities according to their maturity structure. Basic things, if you are treasurer, but a different world for the average system provider.

Also make sure that the system has an intuitive user interface, especially where large amounts of data are captured, for example, for the cash flow forecast. lt should be as easy as a spreadsheet­based solution in order to gain the acceptance needed. Interfaces should exist to all relevant standards and systems. Last and definitely not least, a large customer base that happily acts as references is a must. If this does not exist, the chances are high that the system provider will develop the system at your expense.

Look at your current treasury reporting. If you encounter lots of spreadsheet-based solutions, if you see files transferred via e-mail, if a lot of manual work is needed to create reports and if you find yourself tracking down differences between different reports time and again, you should consider a treasury reporting solution like TIP.

For more information please refer to TIPCO Treasury & Technology

Hubert Rappold – CEO at TIPCO Treasury & Technology

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Financial Systems 2017- Smart technology for smart professionals

| 25-4-2017 | treasuryXL

 

Op 18 mei is het weer zo ver. Dan opent de Financial Systems voor de 7e keer haar deuren in Nieuwegein. Deze vakbeurs brengt ieder jaar opnieuw aanbieders van IT toepassingen en professionals uit de diverse financiële vakgebieden bij elkaar en is daarmee het grootste  kennis- en netwerk-evenement op dit snijvlak.

Wat kunt u verwachten?

Financial Systems is een vakbeurs in combinatie met een kwalitatief hoogwaardig programma. De bezoeker krijgt een compleet overzicht van de Nederlandse markt voor IT-toepassingen en diensten die bestemd zijn voor financiële professionals, zij het in banking, corporate treasury of andere financiële dienstverlening. Sinds 2011 wordt de vakbeurs jaarlijks georganiseerd door Alex van Groningen in samenwerking met Next Level Academy. Meer dan 1000 finance professionals bezochten de beurs in 2016.

Honderden vakgenoten onder een dak

Wij nodigen je namens Alex van Groningen en Next Level Academy uit om de Financial Systems gratis te bezoeken, je kennis & ervaringen te delen met honderden vakgenoten en je te laten bijpraten over de laatste marktontwikkelingen op het gebied van IT en Finance. In diverse hoogwaardige sessies worden relevante topics besproken door toonaangevende experts. Denk daarbij aan ontwikkelingen op het gebied van robotica, kunstmatige intelligentie, big data en analytics.
Een dag vol ‘tips and tricks’ om je business naar een hoger plan te tillen’,

Programma

Het programma begint om 11 uur met diverse netwerk activiteiten op de beursvloer van het NBC Congrescentrum en verschillende parallelsessies in de diverse zalen. treasuryXL is aanwezig met een stand en zal ook een parallelsessie organiseren met de titel ‘Systems om je bank buitenspel te zetten” Een korte beschrijving die daarover in de beursgids zal verschijnen is als volgt:
Tot voor kort was een bankier, als een arts, de onbetwiste adviseur en zijn kosten waren grotendeels onbespreekbaar. Tijden veranderen en technologie draagt daar aan bij. Dit levert de mogelijkheid financieringen, cash en risk management anders in te richten. Kosten worden bespaard, risico’s beperkt en informatie wordt inzichtelijk. Pieter de Kiewit is gespecialiseerd recruiter en actief lid van de treasury community. Graag deelt hij met u in een interactieve sessie zijn visie op huidige relevante technologie. Waar gaat uw volgende gesprek met uw bank over?

Programma informatie is te vinden via deze link.

Locatie

Financial Systems wordt gehouden in het NBC Congrescentrum in Nieuwegein. Deze centraal gelegen locatie is voorzien van alle moderne faciliteiten om het evenement tot een groot succes te maken. Bovendien beschikt het NBC over 1.200 openbare parkeerplaatsen. Het NBC is vanaf station Utrecht CS in slechts 15 minuten te bereiken met de sneltram.

Partner worden of exposeren

U kunt ook partner worden of exposeren. Meer informatie is te vinden op de website.

treasuryXL biedt u ook mogelijkheden om uw bedrijf of diensten te promoten. Voor meer informatie kunt u contact opnemen met Annette Gillhart, Community Manager treasuryXL.

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New revolutionary tool on the market: Online Treasury Toolbox

| 14-4-2017 | Jan Vermeer | Sponsored content |

Treasury Services has launched a revolutionary online Treasury Toolbox. The Toolbox supplies transparency in the increasingly complex world of derivatives pricing and analysis tools are available to replace consultancy services by online analysis tools.

What exactly does the online Treasury Toolbox offer?

  1. Independent Valuation Tools: Tools for building, analysing, pricing and comparing financial transactions and derivatives according to the latest market practices via multiple curve bootstrapping.
  2. Business Analysis Tools: Tools for analysing business projects or series of committed and anticipated business cash flows. The tools will analyse the risks, calculate the market cost price (fair value) of the risks, and it will calculate effective hedge(s) from a risk management perspective.

Upon the launch of the Toolbox, pricers for collateralised interest rate derivatives and an FX Risk Analyser have been made available. This will be extended to more pricing tools and analysers; also the number of currencies supported will be extended.

Why is there a need for Independent Valuations?

  1. Regulatory Requirements: With the continuous aim to shape a more stable banking system, authorities require independent and daily valuations. EMIR, IFRS, MiFID, AIFMD, UCITS and KID PRIIPS are examples of external stakeholders that require independent valuations.
  2. Enhanced Collateral Management: The tools can serve as an independent source to supply a correct calculation of collateral to be exchanged on outstanding derivatives.
  3. Challenge the Counterparty Price: Derivatives pricing has become a “black box” for many organisations. Not only the mathematics to be used, but also the input variables are unknown to many organisations. The tools supply a correct fair value calculation for collateralised derivatives.
  4. Reduction of Reputational Risk: By making use of tools that make a correct fair value calculation, unpleasant surprises can be avoided because you are in control.
  5. Risk Management: These online market practice tools increases the adequacy of risk management and values with extensive risk-return information.
  6. Outsourcing: These tools make it possible to outsource the increasing complex processes related to fair value calculations and risk analysis.

What is interesting about the online Toolbox of Treasury Services?

  1. Best Practice Valuations: These tools make use of the latest insights in the market of how derivatives and structured products should be priced and analysed (via multiple curve bootstrapping; including liquidity spreads and credit spreads).
  2. Transparency: Together with the online training “Modern Bootstrapping” in the Treasury Academy, Treasury Services supplies transparency of how these calculations are performed according to the latest insights in derivatives pricing. The tools perform the calculations and the analysis exactly as explained in the training “Modern Bootstrapping”, which is also precisely how investment banks are pricing.
  3. Auditable: By giving insight into the mathematics as well as the input data in the models, the solution of Treasury Services has become auditable.
  4. Cost Effective: You can chose between different reasonably priced subscriptions.
  5. Instant Availability: The tools can be used on any device, from any location and at any moment through the secured online SAAS platform.
  6. Advanced Portfolio management: Transactions can be saved in a portfolio and all reports can be exported.

If you want to read more about Treasury Services or their online E-Learning programs please click on the links.
You can find the entrance to the online Treasury Toolbox here: http://www.treasuryservices.be/treasury-toolbox

 

Jan Vermeer 

Senior Consultant at ILFA Group

 

Basel III and the impact on cost of hedging

| 30-3-2017 | Arnoud Doornbos | Treasury Services |

Corporates will save hedging costs and administrative costs significantly if they shift their hedging activities to exchanges such as CME (Chicago Mercantile Exchange).
In the summer of 2007 a large number of defaults on U.S. mortgage loans did arise. The banks were hit hard by the global domino effect that resulted. A major financial crisis which was followed by an economic crisis led to a revision of the capital requirements of Basel I and Basel II.

New Basel III

The core of Basel III is that many banks have to hold more capital and liquidity to their outstanding investments than they used to in the past. The rules are implemented as from 2013 and should eventually be fully effective in 2019.

Basel III will be a huge challenge for banks in the coming years. The impact on the pricing of financial products and transactions between banks and their clients will be significant.
Since July 2008, the Basel Committee for Banking Supervision has been working on Basel III for all banks worldwide. The European Commission has introduced three Capital Requirements Directives which contains concrete actions and requirements in terms of risk, capital and liquidity management within a bank. The new requirements, part of Basel III, aim to improve the quality and level of capital reserves of banks.

The capital requirements of certain products have increased and banks are encouraged to create additional capital buffers during good economic times so that they are better positioned to absorb losses during periods of economic stress.

Impact of Basel III on liquidity management

Besides sharpening the capital requirements Basel III has a major impact on liquidity management. The new liquidity standards are based on a stress test. In addition Basel III also introduces new long-term liquidity standards that reduce the mismatch between the maturities of assets and liabilities.
Banks will have to increase their reserves sharply in the coming years. Previously, banks only had to keep 2 % capital to their outstanding investments. Now with Basel III this capital requirement has been increased to 7 % (4.5 % hard buffer and an additional 2.5 % margin in bad times) . As a result banks will probably not distribute their profits in the coming years but will add to their capital buffers. Furthermore many banks will have to issue new shares in order to attract extra money in order to meet the new demands.

Counterparty risk

Within Basel III it has been determined that capital must be held for the credit risk on a counterparty a bank is exposed to in OTC derivatives or equity financing transactions. In addition, market participants are encouraged to take one central counterparty (clearing houses) for OTC derivatives. Any time a bank takes a risk against another party the probability of default exists. To offset this concern, and to support on-going stability within the interbank market, banks have long emphasized the importance of measuring and managing counterparty risk. Now banks have becomes noticeably less comfortable trading with other counterparties including other banks.

The recent deterioration in credit ratings that has hit many U.S. and European banks has led to a heightened sensitivity over counterparty risk. These apprehensions may not be voiced directly, but they become evident when front office trades that would have cleared in the past, no longer do because credit lines have been reduced. There is increasing focus on limiting exposures, even among global banks. And that is starting to affect the way we do business.
CVA (Credit Valuations Adjustment) desks have grown in popularity, as banks seek more effective ways to manage and aggregate counterparty credit risk.
The market has changed now in terms of how counterparty credit risk was calculated. Now, no client is assumed to be truly risk free. Different prices are now expected for different clients on that same interest rate swap, depending on variables including the client’s rating and the overall direction of existing trades between both parties.
On all new interest rate, FX, equity, or credit derivatives, CVA desks price the marginal counterparty risk for inclusion into the overall price charged to the client. CVA is a highly complex calculation.

CVA looks at default through the spread of the counterparty. A swap facing a single B credit that trades at 1200 in CDS is going to be charged a lot more than the same swap facing a AA counterparty. The CDS spread is normally a core input of CVA pricing.

What we see in practice is that in the manual process, the CVA desk team of a bank often passes along suggestions to the salesperson for improving the credit risk in a trade and enabling the sales person to offer the trade at a lower credit price. Examples of that would include improving the collateral agreement with a client, or inserting a break clause.
In the traditional CVA approach, a bank accepts a new trade, takes a fee and uses that fee to buy good hedges for all the risks in that trade. These hedges should eliminate all of the bank’s risk, but this is not necessarily the case once Basel III is taken into account.

Basel III does not recognize all types of hedges that the bank might want to use. Therefore the regulatory capital for certain trades will not be zero, even if the bank has used the full CVA fee to hedge all its risks.
The first impact Basel III has on CVA desks is on pricing. Pre-deal pricing needs to be reviewed to ensure the costs of imposed regulatory capital are covered. If not, additional pricing may need to be added. And the decision on which risks are efficient to hedge also becomes affected not just by strategic or business reasons, but also by the regulatory capital impact.
As part of Basel III’s updated regulatory capital guidelines, a new element has been added: V@R on CVA. Regulators have specified very precisely how the underlying CVA must be calculated for this charge. Banks will therefore need to decide whether to adjust their pricing and balance sheet CVA to match the Basel III rules, or to use different CVA calculations for pricing and regulatory purposes.

EMIR / Dodd-Frank

The Dodd-Frank / EMIR financial reform bill gives a new set of derivatives rules that either will clean up the market or send the world spiraling off the deep end. The truth is probably somewhere in between. The crux of the derivatives regulation is the requirements that standardized swaps be centrally cleared and traded on a Swap Execution Facility, or SEF. This moves derivatives from bilateral agreements between bank and client to centrally cleared products where credit risk is no longer bank-held, but is centralized in a clearinghouse where daily margin is managed. Once clearing is in place, customers no longer are locked into a single dealer, long and short positions can be netted, and SEFs can begin to match buyers and sellers without having to worry about the credit lines of each counterparty or dealer.

This will begin the migration of the derivatives business from a principal-based OTC market toward an agency-based bid/offer SEF market.

Treasury Services’ analysis:

  • Hedging is penalized decreasing the liquidity in the markets leading to increased costs to hedge financial risks for corporations. This is further emphasized by the penalization of the interbank markets through requirement of more capital, and additional constraints on liquidity on interbank transactions.
  • There will also be an increase in administration costs for corporates costs due to EMIR.
  • Corporate credit by banks is penalized: More capital is required in general. For back-up facilities on commercial paper programs it is required that banks will have to have 100% of liquid assets whilst these facilities are fully undrawn. The cost of carry will obviously be invoiced to the client. The ability of the bank to borrow long term will determine the availability of back-up facilities.
  • Restrictions in maturity mismatch (including for repayments) are introduced. This may mean that the risk of borrowing short term to finance long term investments will be transferred to the corporate sector.

The advantages of the OTC market compared to exchanges has become questionable. High cost savings can be achieved by shifting your hedging activities to exchanges such as Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME).
Shifting hedging activities to an exchange such as CME requires changes in your risk management function. This supplies the possibility to bring the cost of hedging back in your control.

 

Arnoud Doornbos

Associate Partner

Financial Systems on May 18th, 2017: Smart technology for smart professionals

| 16-3-2017 | Financial Systems | treasuryXL | sponsored content |

Once more the Financial Systems exhibition will open its doors on May 18th in Nieuwegein, The Netherlands. As the years before it will be the most outstanding event where finance and IT meet each other. treasuryXL will promote the event on a regular basis and we will be present at the event with our own booth.

Financial Systems brings together financial professionals and IT suppliers in an inspiring environment and combines an exclusive exhibition with a very valuable day programme. Visitors get a deeper insight in the IT solutions that are available on the Dutch market and can meet all sorts of service providers for the financial sector. The event is organized by Alex van Groningen in cooperation with Next Level Academy since 2011 and visited every year by about 1000 finance professionals.

Meet hundreds of fellow specialists

During Financial Systems you can meet hundred of fellow specialists of different financial and IT sectors and share your knowledge and experience with them. Update your know-how of the latest market developments, learn about relevant, latest trends in Finance and IT, such as Fintech, robotics, artificial intelligence, big data and analytics, brought to you by outstanding speakers.

Why visit?

  • In just one day you will gain plenty of information about latest trends in your discipline
  • Meet new, innovative IT partners
  • Visit free presentations about newest technologies for all kind of financial disciplines
  • Exchange know-how with other experts on IoT, analytics, big data and more and renew your network contacts
  • Inspiring keynote presentation of trendwatcher and futurist Richard van Hooijdonk

Programme

We will publish the complete programme of the day as soon as it is known in detail.
You will have a wide selection of case presentations, product pitches, inspirations sessions, expert sessions, product presentations and panel discussion rounds in various parallel sessions.
There will be an exhibition space with approximately 40 booths, where you also can find us.

Location

Financial Systems will take place at the NBC Congrescentrum, Blokhoeve 1, 3438 LC Nieuwegein​ which offers modern facilities and a large parking space.

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Register for free via https://financial-systems.nl/aanmelden/, choose the option ‘gratis registreren met code’ and use the following registration code: TXL2017

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For more information on promotion possibilities please contact:

Annette Gillhart – Community Manager treasuryXL

[icon icon=”envelope” color=”” size=”tiny” with_circle=”0″ link=””] info@treasuryxl.com
[icon icon=”phone” color=”” size=”tiny” with_circle=”0″ link=””] 06-21303744

 

 

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