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Industry update: 20 April

Standard Chartered and IFC trade offshore USD/CNH cross currency swap referencing LPR and USD LIBOR

Standard Chartered Bank and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) have traded the first USD/CNH cross currency basis swap (CCS) referencing the one-year CNY Loan Prime Rate (LPR) and the 6-month USD LIBOR in Hong Kong. The LPR USD/CNH CCS is a tailor-made hedging solution allowing IFC to offer local currency lending in China in support of the LPR index.

As China continues to liberalise its interest rates framework with the LPR as the newly dominant benchmark interest rate since 2019, Standard Chartered has been working with clients both within mainland China and offshore markets to provide bespoke hedging solutions amid rising interest rates volatility. The bank says that the successful conclusion of this transaction provides a good foundation for the development of the CNY LPR market.

"We are pleased to work with IFC on this ground-breaking transaction, supporting the IFC’s lending activities in mainland China with this customised and innovative solution," said John Thang, head of Financial Markets, Hong Kong & Greater Bay Area at Standard Chartered. "We look forward to exploring more of such opportunities as we leverage on our strengths in the CNH market to meet our clients’ cross-border trade and investment needs."

Standard Chartered is one of the 18 LPR fixing panel banks in China, a primary dealer for China government bonds, as well as a market maker in both CNY and CNH markets. IFC - a sister organisation of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group - is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets.


Association for Financial Professionals partners with PMsquare on FP&A certification programme

The Association for Financial Professionals (AFP) and PMsquare have announced a formal partnership to offer exam preparation courses for finance professionals based in Sri Lanka. The courses will equip financial professionals with the tools they need to earn the Certified Corporate Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) Professional (FPAC) certification, sponsored by AFP.

The FPAC establishes a set of core competencies for the corporate financial planning and analysis profession and addresses areas that are not necessarily covered by traditional accounting degrees. It is the only credential that is specific to FP&A; it is forward-looking and assesses the ability to see the big picture. Certified FP&A professionals have a track record of adding greater strategic value to their organisations. They are specially equipped to mitigate uncertainty and see beyond the numbers; they strive to make the numbers work to determine holistic strategic planning, budgeting, and forecasting that ties into the goals of the business.

By partnering together, AFP and PMsquare are providing finance professionals in Sri Lanka with an opportunity to achieve their career goals. Each student will have access to the online preparation programme, plus a blended learning experience with PMsquare local instructors.

"This partnership with PMsquare helps to further achieve AFP’s goal of better serving finance professionals in the Asia-Pacific region," said Himashi Soriano, managing director of APAC. "AFP understands the importance of grooming leaders and specialists in this area, and as digital transformation shapes the future of finance, those that hold the FP&A certification will be leading the way. This training solution will support practitioners throughout Sri Lanka to establish themselves as leaders in the FP&A field and gain even more skills as they prepare for the exam."


Stripe Issuing launches in Europe

Technology company Stripe has launched Stripe Issuing in Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and the UK. The solution enables users to create, manage, and distribute virtual and physical payment cards, giving businesses more control over how they spend their money.

Whether it be an on-demand delivery marketplace giving couriers cards to pay for orders, or a car rental company providing cards for drivers to purchase petrol, Stripe Issuing puts businesses in control of how, where, and when their money is spent.

Cards created on Stripe Issuing can be programmatically controlled, with dynamic spending limits, blocked merchant categories, advanced combinations of rules, and even real-time authorisations for each transaction, all managed via Stripe’s Issuing API. The solution integrates with Stripe’s suite of products so that users can manage card issuing programmes alongside payments, fraud prevention, analytics, invoices, and recurring billing.

"Creating and distributing new cards in Europe has long been so complex and opaque that only a handful of companies could ever justify doing it," commented Matt Henderson, Stripe’s EMEA Business Lead. "Today, we’re making it fast, simple, and secure. It used to take months to create and ship new cards in Europe. With Stripe Issuing, it now takes two days. We’ve been astonished by the breadth of use cases businesses in the US have found for our Issuing infrastructure, and can’t wait to see what our European users build with it."


Kyriba receives customer satisfaction award in IDC’s SaaS treasury management survey

Kyriba has announced that it was placed in the highest scoring group of vendors serving the SaaS Treasury Management (TM) application market and has been awarded IDC’s 2020 SaaS TM Customer Satisfaction Award.

IDC’s customer satisfaction award programme, the CSAT Awards, recognises the leading software-as-a-service (SaaS) vendors in each application market who receive the highest customer satisfaction scores based on IDC’s SaaSPath survey. SaaSPath is a global survey of approximately 2,000 organisations across all geographic regions and company sizes, where customers are asked to rate their vendor on more than 30 different customer satisfaction metrics.

The SaaSPath survey is conducted across all geographic regions of the world, all company sizes, includes roughly 55% IT leaders and 45% line of business leaders, and its respondent base ranges from senior managers up through chief experience officers (CXOs). All respondents go through an extensive screening process to ensure they are familiar with the technologies they are being asked about, are current users, and have influence in their company’s technology buying decisions. Further, all customer satisfaction metrics and ratings are collected solely from current customers of the vendors being rated, to ensure scoring reflects up-to-date customer sentiment based on proper vendor familiarity and knowledge.

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