Forget about the hoards of cash held by some US nonfinancial corporations. For most of them, their biggest worry may soon be their debt.
The country has been a stellar performer in Latin America, but now a worldwide scandal about its massive offshore financial industry is putting Panama’s economic growth at risk.
Trends | Shadow Banking
Renaud Laplanche, Lending Club’s founder, chief executive and public face, resigned abruptly in mid-May. His resignation casts a pall over not only the peer-to-peer lender that claims to be the world’s largest online marketplace connecting borrowers and investors, but also the shadow banking industry as a whole.
Nordea Chief Financial Officer Heikki Ilkka, appointed in December after many years with Ernst &Young, talked with Global Finance editors about how the bank is handling negative interest rates and regulatory challenges, and how it deploys technology to satisfy its customers.
Ralph Hamers, CEO and chairman of ING Group, talks with Global Finance about how ING’s lending practices and use of fintech are bolstering the bank—and sustaining the environment.
Alberto Bisin, professor of econo-mics at New York University and fellow at the Econometric Society, studies social, financial and behavioral economics, regulation and income distribution. He spoke with Global Finance on Brexit and other global risks.
Milestones | Argentina
As Argentina prepares to launch a new bond issue in April, marking its return to international capital markets, investors are once again turning their attention to Buenos Aires, which has known 15 years of isolation.
Retail sales in the Middle East are susceptible to lower oil prices and falling consumer demand, but international retail chains still view the region’s long-term investment prospects positively.
Capital Markets | Cross-Border Payments
Forty-five international banks have teamed up with the financial messaging provider Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) to launch an initiative aimed at making cross-border payments faster and more transparent.
Capital Markets | Debt Restructuring
Americans used to like Puerto Rico, a United States territory in the Caribbean, not only for its white, sandy beaches but also because of its high-yield, tax-free bonds.
In the past century, gains in productivity and living standards were made as a result of advances in technology. But where can we expect gains to come from in this century—and are they likely to be gradual or dramatic? The answer depends on whether you believe the optimists or the pessimists.
Trends | Taxation
As part of a crackdown on generous tax incentives across the European Union, in January the European Commission (EC) demanded Belgium claw back €700 million ($762 million) in tax breaks from at least 35 European firms.
Management | Risk Management
Cyberattacks, safety concerns, climate change, regulatory demands, declining oil prices, less demand from China, a crumbling and volatile stock market: There is no lack of risks in doing business, and at the start of 2016, they are ever- present for corporations small and large.
The foundations for economic recovery have been laid by Matteo Renzi’s government, which is tackling fundamental issues at the heart of Italy’s problems. But he has yet to work his magic on public spending.
Trends | Peace Deals
Low oil prices are widening Colombia’s current-account deficit, dampening the confidence of foreign investors and dragging down the economy.
Traditional banks are pulling back from lending to small and midsize businesses. Just as happened in the US, funds are filling the void.
Tom Manning, affiliate partner at Waterstone Management, has been advising global companies on China, and vice-versa, for years. The onetime CEO of Ernst & Young Consulting Asia, Capgemini Asia, Cerberus Asia and Indachin, and former senior partner at Bain, sat down with Global Finance to discuss the nation’s quiet innovation revolution.
The world’s richest countries are getting tougher on corporate tax avoidance. But experts predict that, new guidelines notwithstanding, companies will still find ways around the system.
Hit by a sharp decline in the price of copper, Chile is putting the brakes on public spending with a 2016 budget that aims at keeping costs under control.
José Antonio Ocampo Gaviria, professor at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, says the slowing of international trade since the financial crisis is a major threat to the world economy.
According to the OECD, foreign exchange rate reserves are the stocks of foreign currency denominated assets plus gold, held by a central bank. More simply, they are the assets of the central bank held in currencies outside the home country currency.
Capital Markets | Remedial Measures
The European Commission cites four concrete steps for kick-starting the Capital Market Union
Global Finance interviews senior executives from some of the banks featured in this year’s World’s Safest Banks rankings.
Italy: Sergio Marchionne, the 63-year-old CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), is celebrated as the mastermind of one of the few successful mergers in the industry’s history, the marriage of Fiat and Chrysler.
Capital Markets | Business Funding
In 1957, when the Treaty of Rome was signed and the European Economic Community was established, it was the first milestone in the long path toward free circulation of goods, capital, services and people among European countries.
Market Trends | Intellectual Property
A European patent regime with unitary effect and a Unitary Patent Court is set to come into force as early as 2017, making it simpler and cheaper for international corporations to defend their intellectual property rights.
According to the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA), a derivative is a risk transfer agreement, the value of which is derived from the value of an underlying asset. More simply, a derivative is a contract between two parties where one party agrees to take on the risk of losses associated with a particular asset—such as a physical commodity or an agreed amount of currency.
Newsmakers | US
In the United States, a real estate developer turned politician is stealing the thunder of many more-seasoned statesmen.
Regional Report | Latin America
The large economies on the east coast of Latin America—Brazil, Venezuela and Argentina—are slumping badly. Things are far different out west.
Neil Shearing, chief emerging markets economist at Capital Economics, visited Global Finance on September 10, just as Standard & Poor’s cut Brazil’s public debt to junk level. We asked him about the outlook for that country and other emerging markets.
Commodities | Oil prices have only slightly recovered from a new record low set at the end of August. But they are still 60% below their peak of 2014, which is putting pressure on US oil companies, with many pundits predicting a rapid overhaul of the industry.
Regional Report | As relations between Cuba and the United States get friendlier, the economic outlook of the island is also improving.
At this point, it’s pretty much assumed that hackers are going to break into corporate computer networks. Global Finance talked with Michael Morris, chief Technology Officer of root9B, which offers cybersecurity services to corporate and government entities, about the war on digital attackers—and how businesses can retake some ground.
Major rating agencies are chasing each other in downgrading Brazil, as the country struggles with recession, a spiraling devaluation of the real and a damaging political crisis.
BBVA’s President and COO Carlo Torres Villa on the explosive growth of online banking and mobile banking.
As analytics aimed at helping companies make use of all their data proliferate, companies worldwide are embracing these new technologies and finding ever-more-innovative ways to use them. Those that fail to do so risk being left on the sidelines.
Global Finance talked with Peter Blair Henry, dean of New York University’s Stern School of Business, about the urgency of bold reform and global trade to help developing nations.
Newsmakers | Mexico
In June, Jaime Rodríguez Calderón became the first independent candidate to be elected a state governor in Mexico, winning office in Nuevo León.
Cover Story | Supplement
As data sharing becomes more common, individual privacy seems to be more luxury than norm. But corporations working with big-data analytics must pay attention to how many personal details they gather about their customers, lest they cross the invisible line of what is acceptable and what is not—and anger their client base.
Trends | FX Commodities Q&A
Petr Grishin, head of macro research and chief economist for Eastern Europe at VTB Capital, discussed the ruble, oil prices and Russian trade with Global Finance.
Big Data | Chief financial officers have been modeling profit and loss statements for years, but in an era of big data they face a different and increasingly complex task.
Global Finance had a chance to interview Sim Tshabalala in April. The joint chief executive of Standard Bank Group answered questions about Africa’s growth and the substantial demand for banking services on the continent.
Global Finance sat down with Luiz Carlos Angelotti, MD and head of investor relations at Brazil’s Banco Bradesco, to discuss the bank’s bullish approach to investing despite the country’s economic downturn.
Management | Hedging
The dramatic slide in oil prices over the past year or so has once again underscored the value—and perils—of hedging. Some companies and governments bet on a fall in the cost of crude and thereby obviated large losses. Others did not make out so well.
Special Report | The Caribbean
The Caribbean’s economies are expected to improve this year on the back of growth in tourism, but the economic climate remains frail with the drop in oil prices proving a mixed bag for countries in the region.
The annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank in Lima, Peru, in October, will provide world leaders with the right stage to discuss poverty and inequality and suggest ways for Latin American economies to foster growth less dependent on commodities, according to former president of Peru, Alejandro Toledo.
Global Finance talked money laundering, Cuba and banking regulation with David Schwartz, president and CEO of the Florida International Bankers Association, a nonprofit representing financial institutions in the US, Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe.
Global Finance sat down with José Francisco de Lima Gonçalves, a professor of economics at São Paulo University and chief economist at Banco Fator, to discuss his views on Brazil in 2015.
Banking | Europe
In its first round of QE, the ECB said that the bonds of only seven European financial institutions were eligible—until further revision, which won’t happen until at least April 15.
Management | Corporate Reporting
For Petróleo Brasileiro, or Petrobras, as the giant Brazilian oil company is called, the time to present audited 2014 results, including the write-downs associated with the highly publicized historical corruption scandal, is running out.