Money laundering and terrorism financing are serious issues that banks must address, especially as too many financial institutions are complicit in enabling the flow of unlawful funds. Unfortunately, the need to act decisively has also resulted in a disabling tightening of trade finance, sorely needed for economic growth. The new Asian Development Bank Scorecard seeks to ameliorate the inadvertent consequences of AML and CFT compliance.
Little is more valuable to financial-market participants than accurate predictions of future growth. With interest rates on the rise in the US, investors are anxiously looking for indications of an impending recession. But what are yield curves really telling us about future growth prospects—in the United States and also in Australia? Is dreaded recession in the cards, or is modest slowdown more likely?
Chinese president Xi Jinping calls it the “project of the century”. Part of his roadmap to Chinese prosperity, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), presents opportunities not only for Corporate China but for financial institutions and corporates the world over.
At the end of August, leading ratings agency Moody’s downgraded 18 banks and two finance companies in Turkey. According to the agency, the downgrades “primarily reflect a substantial increase in the risk of a downside scenario, where a further negative shift in investor sentiment could lead to a curtailing of wholesale funding”.
The push on global trade to continue accelerating has not let up; but without sufficient trade finance, it will be restrained from keeping up the pace. With increasing appetite for purchasing pools of receivables—but a keen awareness of the associated risks—a growing number of banks are turning to Excess of Loss (XoL) trade credit insurance. How are banks leveraging this type of insurance to grow their trade-finance portfolios?
The decade following the financial crisis unleashed a torrent of regulatory requirements. Financial institutions have spent billions on technology and operations to achieve regulatory compliance; the frequency of new requirements is high. Despite all of this, regulators have not been satisfied with the quality of the data and level of transparency. How can banks and regulators strike a balance between the costs and the benefits of regulation?
Infrastructure that is up to code is vitally important to sustaining a country’s economy, but even developed countries are falling behind in their infrastructure investment. Effective infrastructure investment needs to be a combined effort of governments, multilateral development banks and private investors, but it lags behind in its appeal to private investors. What measures can be taken to draw more private-sector financing into this crucial foundation of economic growth?
The good news is that economic growth globally is strong, with a few exceptions, as the world shakes off the effects of the Great Recession. But economists are uneasy about troubling undercurrents, such as protectionist trade policies, that could whip up into a global trade war. Most are hoping that trade relationships can be repaired, acknowledging that the time is now to rebuild rather than burn bridges.
The global financial crisis triggered many changes to the world’s financial system, including the ascension of alternative finance: financial channels, sources and instruments that exist beyond the traditional. Spurred on by the capital needs of fast-growing small and medium-sized firms and prospective real-estate buyers, alternative finance has mushroomed over the past 10 years into a multi-faceted, ever-evolving financial powerhouse capable of overcoming barriers to obtaining finance.
Financial services firms in the UK have more questions than answers about how Brexit will affect their operations. The uncertainty extends to London’s position as a global centre for dispute resolution, as it is possible that English court decisions will not be automatically enforceable in the EU. As the case study in this article demonstrates, English courts will endure as the best option for fast and fair resolution of international cases.