The Treasurer November 2000

Message from the Managing Editor

Most consultants and audit firms know that frauds in treasury are far more common than many treasurers realise. For various reasons, it seems to be taboo for the corporate victims of fraud to admit to the crime. However clever the fraud has been (and many are not actually very clever at all), there is shame in admitting that it has happened to you. It implies poor financial control that could have an adverse effect on the company that could ultimately cost more than the original crime. This month’s magazine features an extremely interesting article by Andy Noad of the City of London Police that hopefully will make those silent victims feel that they are not alone after all. Andy’s experience of policing the financial markets makes fascinating, if sobering, reading. It would be good to think that his words might encourage more victims to report those small crimes rather than just sweep them under the carpet. Readers may also want to refer back to September’s article on fraud, by Manson Garrick (page 16 of that edition). Another important issue for treasurers is to ensure compliance with the various regulations to which we are subjected. Back in July, the Association held one of its most successful short conferences ever on the subject of the impending FAS133 (and another event is in the pipeline for 2001). Now that FAS133/138 has become a reality, many companies, advisors and system suppliers are still struggling with the practical implications. This month’s Spotlight on the new standards has probably come at an opportune moment for many. It is interesting that, in some ways, the revisions required are benefiting companies in that they are having to review all their structures, procedures and systems, which may turn up unexpected benefits. This month’s international focus is on the advantages and disadvantages of using offshore centres for various treasury activities. This section has been edited by Rod Roman of Ernst & Young, who has also contributed one of the articles. I am extremely grateful to Rod for supporting us in this way, and for giving up his time to assemble a most interesting set of articles. Readers, particularly those studying for the Association’s examinations, may be interested to note that our old ‘Back to Basics’ section has been replaced by ‘Treasury Essentials’, a series of articles written by the team at bfinance, which provide step-by-step guides to key treasury practices. We follow last month’s article on Eurobonds with a guide to medium term notes. Finally, I would draw your attention to developments in the education department of the Association which are addressed by David Creed (on page 67) and Richard Raeburn (on page 69). VALERIE HAWKES

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