Study Finance – Focus on Your Future

There has never been a better time for business studies students to enhance their practical and ethical knowledge of the finance world. Students, who choose to study finance now have a wealth of business and finance institutions to choose from – all focused on your future.

Undergraduate courses can equip you with the key skills that will maximise your career prospects. Undoubtedly the best place for students to learn the basics and master the key skills required to succeed is in London – widely regarded as the world’s business and financial capital.

London business schools enable students to achieve academic success in a learning environment that gives you the best in terms of facilities, expert teaching, professional placements and the opportunity to study abroad.

The chance to equip you with the academic knowledge to operate in the increasingly competitive world of financial markets is an expensive financial commitment. Employers in this sector demand graduates who are driven and capable of analysing and solving complex problems in banking and finance, whilst possessing the ability to apply the principles of financial management to the sector.

At London business schools there are undergraduate degrees that incorporate both banking and international finance skills, with a balanced structure helping students to build sound academic and practical knowledge and understanding of the markets along with strong commercial awareness.

London business school graduates benefit most from the numerous industry links that are provided as a result of their proximity to the financial city. Graduates can network with other professionals from different backgrounds and industries, providing the perfect environment to exchange ideas and further learning.

Study finance and make the best investment for your career.

International Property Investment – Rewards and Challenges

Many people who consider real estate investing consider the option of international property investment. There are both rewards and challenges to this type of investing. It can be extremely lucrative, and, by definition, your options are unlimited, as you can choose any location in the world for your investment property. On the challenges side, you have to do quite a bit of research into the places you are considering. Here are some of the main things to consider before you think of investing internationally:

How Will You Use the Property?

Is this a place you want to live yourself, or perhaps retire to someday? Or is it strictly an investment? If it’s either of the first two, you want to make sure it’s a place where you’d be comfortable. You should make at least one visit there before even considering any purchases. Ideally, you should visit any location you are considering an investment in, even if you don’t intend to live there. There are simply some things you should see for yourself.

Price vs. Other Considerations

Some investors think mainly of finding a bargain, and these are available. However, you should also think of factors that could possibly be relevant in the future, such as political and economic stability. For example, at this time there are some apparent good values in Eastern Europe, but in many cases the instability of the political situation would make an investment there risky.

Financing International Investments

International financing can be a bit tricky, as you are dealing with banks and governments of more than one nation. You can handle the financing with a local lending institution, as you would if buying something local. You could also investigate a loan from the country where you want to buy. The conditions and restrictions will, of course, vary, depending on your financial situation and how friendly the country is to foreign investors.

There are other options as well. Sometimes the developer of a property will offer you a mortgage to expedite a sale. You have to consider the terms carefully, considering the laws and regulations of the country where the property is located.

Then there are international mortgage brokers, who specialize in providing financing to international investors. This can sometimes be the easiest route to take, as you will be dealing with someone experienced in dealing with such situations. However, be sure to investigate any company thoroughly before making any commitments with them.

Consider the Costs

When investing internationally, there are many costs involved, some of which you might not be aware of if you are new to this kind of endeavor. In France, for instance, fees differ depending on the age of the property (the older the property, the higher the cost).

Taxes vary a great deal from place to place. There can be taxes on purchases, property taxes and taxes on rental income. If you plan to live where you are buying, some countries charge foreigners a special tax. Other places, such as the Cayman Islands, are virtually tax free.

Advantages of International Investing

Despite the challenges, and the research you have to do ahead of time, the advantages to international investing are significant. You are not limited by local economic conditions. You can literally make a list of everything you want, in terms of climate, price, economic and political conditions, culture and so forth and find the place that best suits you.

International property investment can be a rewarding and profitable decision if you make sure to gather the necessary information.

Access to International Finance from the UK Could be the Answer you are Looking For

Following many years of experience since the ‘new 86 Act and its amendments and indeed considerably prior thereto a number of ‘grumpy old men’ ( lawyers, accountants, Insolvency practitioners, financiers and brokers ) agreed to combine their knowledge and experience to create dynamic, cost effective and above all practical solutions to most debt related problems.

Whether you are over-spending or over-trading, borrowing ( from necessity ) out of control, dodging bailiffs and avoiding process servers bearing pressing news from the Bankruptcy Courts, we can help.

If it is hopeless financially we’ll advise you how to regain control and ‘let you down’ as easily as possible. If there’s a way through e.g. unofficial or official Voluntary Arrangements ( corporate or personal ) we’ll assist. We buy the most important commodity you need at this time which is time itself.

As we do that we’ll set about sorting you ( or your firm or company ) out e.g. re-financing your business, consolidating your loans, re-mortgaging, replacing your debentures, negotiating with the revenue and the VAT , local authorities. as well as all your creditors etc.

If its saveable we’ll save it, if it isn’t we’ll investigate and help you to minimise the consequences.

IT’S NEVER AS BAD AS YOU THINK, BUT REMEMBER NOTHING IS SO BAD THAT IT CAN’T GET WORSE, the most destructive thing you can do is to ignore the problem. ‘

Accounts Receivable Financing – Exporting to Africa

Several agencies of the US government support departments that have mandates to help you increase your export sales and minimize risks with regard to the sales of products and services to Africa. These departments exist within US agencies such as the Export-Import Bank of the United States, the Department of Commerce, and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation. All are supported by a relatively recent law called: The African Growth and Opportunity Act. The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) was signed into law by President Bush on May 18, 2000 as Title 1 of The Trade and Development Act of 2000. The Act offers tangible incentives for African countries to continue their efforts to open their economies and build free markets.

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) has been modified three times to increase exports to Africa.

In the first modification, AGOA was changed in to substantially expand preferential access for imports from beneficiary Sub-Sarahan African countries in several ways: 1) The term “fabric” was previously interpreted by U.S. Customs as excluding components that are “knit-to-shape” (i.e. components that take their shape in the knitting process, rather than being cut from a bolt of cloth); now knit-to-shape apparel will qualify for AGOA benefits. 2) The definition of hybrid cutting was broadened to include cutting of fabric in the U.S. and/or AGOA countries. 3) The volume cap on duty-free treatment for apparel made from fabric made in AGOA regions or, for lesser developed beneficiary countries from fabric made anywhere was doubled. 4) Botswana and Nambia were specially designated as less developed countries.

In the second modification, AGOA’s periods for preferential treatment for African imports to the US were expanded.

In the third modification, known as AGOA “1V” was expanded and liberalized again. In essence, US laws were created to increase US exports to Africa and imports from Africa to the US.

Pursuant to AGOA the US organized a U.S.-Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Forum hosted by the Secretaries of State, Commerce, Treasury, and the U.S. Trade Representative. The Forum serves as the vehicle for regular dialogue between the United States and African countries on issues of economics, trade, and investment. This fosters a unique cooperation between US agencies, African countries, and US businesses that desire to increase export sales to Africa with minimal risk.

How does this work? It involves the Export Assistance Centers of the US Department of Commerce to assist you with your marketing and sales efforts to Africa and financial support from the Export-Import Bank of the United States to Banks that participate in and finance the export of goods and services to Africa in a variety of programs.

The Export Assistance Centers are part of the U.S. Commercial Services which is the trade promotion of the International Trade Administration (a part of the US Department of Commerce). Their mission is to provide 1) market research in the form of country specific commercial guides; 2) industry sector analysis; and 3) internal market insight reports. They provide trade counsel and advocacy through every step of the export process. They sponsor trade events that promote your product or services to qualified African buyers. They provide introductions to qualified buyers and distributors. They will help settle disputes and negotiate tariff issues. Once described as “glorified matchmakers” they will go as far as possible to help you export safely to Africa- even to the US Ambassador to facilitate these objectives, if appropriate.

And they help with the nuts and bolts of exporting to Africa such as setting up meetings for you with up to 5 prospective buyers per day, selecting drivers, translators and hotels. When you go to Africa to sell your goods or services you will not be making a cold call; you will be meeting with pre-qualified people when you participate in this program- all at a nominal cost to cover the agency’s expenses.

It is necessary for you to actually travel to Africa and meet face to face to successfully export to Africa. This is a cultural necessity. African businesses do not operate like American businesses where we trust negotiations conducted over the telephone and internet, and often transact without ever meeting the buyer or seller.

What exports are needed in Africa? You can read the research reports to find out specifically what is in demand. At the top of the list you will see products that purify water. Africa has a huge water infrastructure need. There is also a great interest in security related devices such as high tech devices to prevent theft of vehicles and increase recovery of stolen vehicles. Textile manufacturing equipment and telecommunications equipment also head the lists. Certain medical devices are also in demand.

What are some of the challenges regarding creating or increasing your export sales to Africa? It is difficult to qualify buyers; there are limited credit reporting facilities in Africa; African companies’ auditing and accounting systems are not “world class”. And it is difficult to ascertain who will actually pay as promised in you negotiations. To minimize these risks it is prudent to work with the Export-Import Bank and their correspondent banks and insurance brokers for international trade transactions to Africa.

There are specific Export-Import Bank standards for short-term and medium term credit; these may be located on their website at exim.gov. Financing guarantees and insurance are available for short term financing in 44 Sub-Sarahan African countries. They facilitate more competitive terms for African buyers. After the US correspondent bank has reviewed and approved you for financing, you can use these guarantees and insurance to minimize your accounts receivable financing risk when extending credit to African buyers. This applies to transactions wherein you have successfully delivered your products or services to African purchasers.

Unfortunately, there presently is no way to insure against contract frustration, also known as transactional risk. In other words, you take the risk of default if a prospective African buyer cancels the transaction before it is completed. You are at risk regarding disputes such as delivery or product specifications until they are resolved. And you cannot avoid devaluation of currency as a political risk either.

On the other hand, commercial risks such as insolvency, bankruptcy and protracted default are covered risks utilizing these programs; also covered are political risks such as war, revolution and insurrection.

The bottom line: you can use accounts receivable financing to export to Africa to increase your sales, minimize risks, and increase your working capital when you work with the appropriate US agencies, their correspondent banks and insurance brokers.

Role and Responsibilities of the International Monetary Fund

The international monetary fund is the organization of the United Nations that bears the responsibility to promote the monetary cooperation and the international trade. It came in to existence in 1945, at the United Nations Monetary and financial Conference. Till today, it has 186 nation-members.

It works by surveillance, lending and technical assistance. The surveillance involves the partnership between the international monetary fund (IMF) and its member nations. They, after accessing the economic status of the members, offer a detailed advice, and help them to formulate strong and workable economic policies. Lending constitutes the provision of financial aid to the needy countries on low interest rates. Moreover, it offers technical assistance in the fields like banking, fiscal and economic as well as exchange rate policies. It helps the members to fight against the threats of terrorism.

The major responsibility of international monetary fund is to even out the world currencies and to devise plans of economic adjustment for the nations that need an economic reorganisation. Its membership is available to the countries who agree to abide by the terms regulated by the board, comprising of the members of every nation. The general obligatory terms include avoiding the manipulation of exchange rates and abstaining from the discriminatory currency practices.

It emphasises on an orderly management and adjustment of the exchange rates. The adjustments play an active role to provide assistance to the developing countries to meet with the heavy exchange demands that are imposed by the high import prices, declining export earnings and development programs.

Its creation is seen to prevent the castigatory currency devaluation and trade limitations, which have been the major cause of the economic depression. In other words, the role of international monetary fund is to create a financial and economic stability. Economic stability is about giving breathing room to the countries. A program coupled with IMF financing is designed by the national authorities to mediate financial stability. Many countries buy gold bullion to keep stocks for their currency.

IMF is playing an active role in reducing poverty in the third world counties or the under developed countries. It is working independently or in cooperation with the World Bank and other organizations. Its programs include the poverty reduction and growth facility (PRGF) and debt relief to the heavily indebted countries (HIPC).

It efficiently addresses the balance-of-payment problem. Any member facing this problem can apply to the IMF for the needed foreign currency from the reserves. The member may use this foreign exchange for the period of five years, and then return the currency back to the IMF resources. The advantage of using these resources is that IMF offers low market rates of interest for using these funds.

In the year 2000, the managing director and the members of the IMF settled on several leading policies that included the endorsement of the persistent non-inflationary economic growth, enhancement in the stability of the international finance system and pondering over the core macroeconomic and financial areas. Moreover, keeping in view the situation of the global economy in the next few years, IMF has pre planned and has started making the arrangements to add to its resources.