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Country Risk Information

Z-Score Creator Predicts Bank-Based Credit Bubble, Impact on Trade Creditors

A market bubble appears to be forming in bank- and financial institution-based credit that could trigger a spike in bankruptcy filings within the next couple of years, according to Ed Altman, PhD, inventor of the famed bankruptcy prediction Z-Score model and instructor at the upcoming summer session of NACM’s Graduate School of Credit and Financial Management (GSCFM).  That is likely ... Read More »

Country Risk Climate:  TRENDS TO KEEP AN EYE ON

Canada – lower interest rates, lower CAD; Denmark – a leaf out of the Swiss book; European Union – full steam ahead with QE; Portugal – paying off IMF debt early; Saudi Arabia — nervousness about the royal succession; Yemen – chaos in a failed state. CHINA:  The widely advertised slowdown was not exactly big news when details were announced. ... Read More »

Ex-bankers Suspected of Business Intelligence Hack on Wall Street

A new approach to profiting from cyber-crime has seen confidential company information being syphoned from corporate communications then used to ‘game’ the US stock market, possibly by former traders.   The cyber-espionage ring – dubbed FIN4 – has been targeting individuals who have access to insider company data including executives, consultants, legal counsel and analysts for the past year, in a ... Read More »

Chinese Slowdown Really Starting to Hurt

The Chinese are slipping towards what might be called a recession despite the fact the economy is growing at a 7.4% pace.  Anywhere else in the world these numbers would be hailed as a major accomplishment but for China this is close to disastrous. The ability of the country to keep pace with the demands of a billion and half ... Read More »

Country Risk Climates:  Trends to Keep an Eye On

Argentina – a new government confrontation with farmers; Ecuador – massively growing indebtedness to China; India – the long-awaited interest rate cut; Madagascar – the government resigns; Switzerland – a shock decision by Nationalbank; Uganda – heavy pressures on the shilling. CROATIA:  President-elect Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic will have to accept a possibly contentious cohabitation with the incumbent Social-Democrat-led government at least ... Read More »

Australian Risk Climate: Business Credit Demand Levels Out, with a Modest rise in the Fourth Quarter of 2014

Overall business credit applications rose 1.5% for the December quarter 2014 (vs December quarter 2013) Modest growth in business loans (+2.9%) and trade credit (+1.8%), although the rate of growth eased Asset finance declined slightly (-1.1%)  (vs December quarter 2013) The Veda Quarterly Business Credit Demand Index, measuring applications for business loans, trade credit and asset finance, rose at an annual ... Read More »

Corporate Fraud in India will Rise, due to Failures to Update

The rate of corporate fraud in India is at an all-time high and will continue to grow over the next two years – outpacing official efforts to mitigate it – because mechanisms that are supposed to manage fraud risk are outdated or inadequate, a report finds. Fraudulent areas set to rise include bribery and corruption, the diversion or theft of ... Read More »

Australian Risk Climate: PRICES ON THE RISE

Falling Australian dollar impacting business costs After easing in the lead-up to Christmas, prices are expected to begin rising this year with 31 per cent of businesses intending to lift their selling prices in the first quarter, while just four per cent will discount. Dun & Bradstreet’s monthly Business Expectations Survey shows the Selling Price Index for the March quarter ... Read More »

Top Trends for Business Intelligence in 2015

Business Intelligence continues to evolve as developers unravel the mysteries of big data via analytics. Meanwhile, BI costs are falling, allowing SMEs to compete with corporate rivals. Here are some other trends we’re set to see this year… Big Data analytics firm Tableau Software thinks 2015 will see corporate governance transforming, with organisations aligning their people, processes and technology to ... Read More »

Country Risk Climates:  Trends to Keep an Eye On

Argentina – catching up on import payments; Belarus – a devaluation and dramatically higher interest rates; Nigeria – FX market activity has dried up; Romania – interest rate cuts; Venezuela – claims of extensive Chinese financial help. ARGENTINA: An opportunity for a deal with the holders of un-restructured Argentine debt has come and gone with the turn of the year, ... Read More »


Argentina – a harsh liquidity squeeze to salvage the peso; Nigeria – FX trading is still in the doldrums; Russia – following the FX debacle, a bank crisis; Ukraine – a steep drop in gold holdings. AUSTRALIA: The Australian dollar has regained some of its footing in the FX markets, but its underlying tone is likely remain weak as analysts deem ... Read More »

Country Risk Climate USA: Small Business Optimism Grows

The National Federation of Independent Business reported that its business sentiment index rose to 98.1 in November, 2 percentage points higher than it reported in October and the highest reading since February of 2007. There was a significant increase in the outlook for the economy over the next 6 months. The change in Congress, dropping energy prices, generally good macroeconomic ... Read More »

Country Risk Climates: Trends to Keep an Eye On

Nigeria – the Central Bank causes a messy day in the FX markets; Switzerland – back to negative interest rates to shield the franc; Venezuela – the country’s credit rating is in the basement. COLOMBIA: Colombia’s was the fastest-growing among major Latin American economies in the third quarter. It will be hurt by the plunge in oil prices, but the ... Read More »

European Risk Climate: Atradius Expects Insolvencies to Remain High

Atradius expects insolvencies to remain high despite improving economic growth Insolvencies in many European economies are expected to remain well above 2007 levels in 2014 and 2015 according to Atradius Credit Insurance N.V. Economic performances in the US, UK, and Asia are underpinning global growth. The US is experiencing a broad-based economic recovery. As a result, annual business failures in ... Read More »

Country Risk Climates: Trends to Keep an Eye on

Mauritius – Labour lost a bid to strengthen presidential powers; Norway – repercussions from the oil price collapse; Portugal – economic prospects have improved a great deal; Russia – struggling with falling oil prices and a plunging ruble; Uruguay – Tabare Vasquez is the new president. CYPRUS:  Accounting changes upgrading GDP have made it easier to leave the international bailout ... Read More »