Cash & Working CapitalCOVID-19
July 2, 2020

Cash and COVID-19: A Tale of Two Companies

One company asks, “Where is the cash?” while another reevaluates operational processes. The economic upheaval unleashed by the pandemic divided the universe of companies at a recent virtual meeting of the Global Cash and Banking Group into two camps: Those with ample liquidity that were able to manage cash and conduct business as usual; and those forced to play defense and go “back to basics,” as one member in the latter camp put it. Two member companies sharing very different perspectives…
Cash & Working CapitalCOVID-19
June 30, 2020

US Coin Shortage: Retail Treasury Teams Call for Action, Urgency

Call it a disruption or call it a shortage—not enough coins means pain for retailers and banks.Treasurers of major retailers and restaurant chains sounded loud notes of alarm at a NeuGroup virtual meeting Friday about what many observers are calling a coin shortage. U.S. Bank, the meeting sponsor, described it as a “severe disruption” in the nation’s coin circulation sparked by COVID-19. (People have spent less cash during the pandemic and have exchanged far fewer coins for bills or credit…
COVID-19Investment ManagementRisk Management
June 16, 2020

A “Perfect Storm” in Emerging Markets Shatters Hope for Some Investors 

Treasury investment managers hear sober forecasts and calls for greater action by the IMF.Hardly any of the treasury investment managers who met in early May at a NeuGroup virtual meeting said they owned emerging market (EM) debt—not very surprising given that most companies have been parking cash in high-quality, short-duration investments since the pandemic rattled credit markets. But one manager who does invest in USD-denominated EM debt said he was “bitterly disappointed” in the International Monetary Fund and G7 nations that had…
BankingCOVID-19
June 16, 2020

So far, So Good: US Banking Sector Shows Strength During Pandemic

Banks are as healthy as ever, and  robust investment-grade debt issuance has bolstered the industry’s profitability.The global pandemic has cratered economies and affected businesses the world over. But the US banking system remains healthy because banks are well capitalized, having adhered to rules put in place after the 2008 financial crisis. Equally important: Investment-grade debt issuance by corporates is generating bank profits. That’s some of what members of NeuGroup’s Tech20 Treasurers’ Peer Group heard at a recent meeting from a…
Accounting & DisclosureComplianceCOVID-19Treasury Management
June 4, 2020

Smooth Sailing: One Investment Manager’s Painless Adoption of CECL

Taking a qualitative approach and doing no discounted cash flow calculations produced a calm CECL debut for at least one investment manager.At a recent NeuGroup meeting, the only investment manager whose company adopted the new accounting standard for estimating credit losses in the first quarter described a relatively painless process, giving comfort to some of his peers. The meeting, sponsored by BlackRock, included a presentation by Aladdin on FASB’s current expected credit losses (CECL) methodology. Aladdin offers risk management software…
COVID-19ESGInvestment Management
June 2, 2020

Financing the Fight Against COVID-19: Sustainability Bond Deals

Corporates and banks fuel gains in social and sustainability bond issuance amid the battle against the coronavirus. The coronavirus pandemic may have dampened green bond issuance in the first quarter of 2020, but it has also pushed some corporates to use proceeds from sustainability bond offerings to help fight the virus. Case in point: Pfizer. Heather Lang, executive director of sustainable finance solutions at ESG ratings firm Sustainalytics—which is being acquired by Morningstar—named Pfizer as one of the institutions using proceeds…
Capital MarketsCOVID-19
May 26, 2020

Good Timing: Blowout Bond Deals Before and After the Meltdown

Two debt issues show the benefits of both planning and flexibility when tapping capital markets.Investors clamoring for highly rated corporate bonds before the financial-market meltdown began in late February and again in early May provided opportunities for issuers to do debt deals at very attractive terms under different circumstances. Two members of NeuGroup’s Assistant Treasurers’ Leadership Group discussed with peers the key factors and market dynamics driving their companies’ deals. The similarities. Each company’s offering, one at the start of 2020 and…
Capital MarketsCOVID-19
May 26, 2020

Aligning Investment Strategy With the Shape of the Economic Recovery

Investment managers hear Neuberger Berman’s bull, bear and base case scenarios and the outlook for credit markets.The best path for some fixed-income investors amid the uncertainty created by the pandemic may be to follow the lead of the Federal Reserve and buy assets that the US central bank is buying to keep credit markets liquid. That was among the key takeaways about asset allocation at a NeuGroup virtual meeting of treasury investment managers in late April sponsored by Neuberger Berman.Bull,…
COVID-19Risk Management
May 26, 2020

Risk and the Butterfly Effect on Supply Chains Amid COVID-19 

What small issue now can turn into a larger risk later? And how far away is later? Can a small slipup in the supply chain—such as the inability to get a small part—create a bigger risk down the line? That example of the butterfly effect in action is what one member of NeuGroup’s Corporate Enterprise Risk Management group says he and management have been thinking about lately. The issue, like many things in business these days, is that COVID-19 adds a…
Capital MarketsCash & Working CapitalCOVID-19
May 7, 2020

Pandemic Reveals the Haves and the Have Nots: Asia Report

Examples of the varying effects lockdowns had on businesses, and how they’ve responded. The coronavirus pandemic has provided more proof that crises affect some companies far differently than others. The reasons include what industry a company is in, its business model and how much cash it has on hand—the haves and the have-nots. Perhaps less expected is that business units within the same company may weather a storm better than others. All this and more emerged in discussions among finance…