Performance Measurement in the Banking Industry

After the financial crisis that began in 2008, banks are taking steps to improve their performance measurement capabilities in light of changed economic and market conditions and new management needs. For example, new regulatory strictures are affecting the underlying economics of such businesses as payment-card issuing and processing. Capital requirements are increasing for most banking businesses.

New channels like mobile phones are becoming more important. Revenue growth continues to be difficult to achieve due to weak economic conditions, low interest rates and regulatory restrictions. Banks are trying to manage costs better, deepen relationships with customers and enhance product mix and pricing decisions.

These and other factors are causing banks to re-examine and improve the ways in which they measure and report business performance.

Happy Birthday, NYSE

On May 17, 1792 a group of 24 stockbrokers – pioneers in a business that was still in its infancy – signed an agreement to trade only with each other and to charge their customers a standard commission. The brokers signed their historic agreement underneath a Buttonwood tree that stood on Wall Street, or so the story goes. The document has since been called the “Buttonwood Agreement” and marks the origins of the New York Stock Exchange.

How does a company stay successful for 220 years? Certainly by being best at what it does. Also by being able to see down the road and changing to meet new opportunities and challenges. All while remaining steadfast to its principles and true to itself.

Are We Heading Into a Facebook Bubble?

Zynga. LinkedIn. Groupon. So much hype about Pinterest. And now, the social media giant of them all, Facebook. Are we in a social media / tech bubble?

If Facebook’s stock drops like a stone after the initial opening, then, probably not. But, if excited Facebook “Friends” pile on, we could be in the early stages of the creation of another bubble.

The Coach Has Lost The Team

I was watching ESPN the other day while working out and one of the stories was about the Los Angeles Clippers, who after a start to the season that promised (and showed) great potential, have seemingly taken their rightful seat next to Kobe Bryant and the Lakers as the ‘other’ team in Los Angeles.

No one would argue that the loss of newly signed Chauncey Billups, a proven veteran with skins on the wall, was significant in curtailing the team’s ascension to the NBA elite. Still, they have Blake Griffin, one of the league’s brightest young stars whose aerial assaults on the rim are renowned. And they do have DeAndre Jordan, as athletic a center (at 6’11″, 265) as there is in the league. They also added the much-needed outside shooting of Mo Williams, who only a few years ago teamed up with Lebron James in Cleveland to lead what was before and has been since a mostly moribund franchise to the NBA Finals. And for toughness and the dirty work that doesn’t always show up on the stat sheet, I present to you the salty veteran Kenyon Martin. Oh, and by the way, Chris Paul, a perennial All-Star recognized as one of the top handful of point guards in the league, came over this season in one of the year’s few blockbuster trades. A lineup with talent, right? Young talent. Exciting talent. So what’s the problem? The coach!

Why Asia’s New Millionaires Are Driving Bankers Totally Nuts

It’s no secret that Asia is now home to a ton of new wealthy people, especially in India and China. In fact, McKinsey & Co. expects the number of rich people in Asia to rise 14% a year through 2015 (in Europe it will only rise 4%).

So naturally, bankers have descended upon the continent to help these newly rich manage their wealth. But according to the WSJ, Asia’s rich don’t always see eye to eye with banks.

Sustainability and Performance

The traditional way of measuring value and business performance of a company is changing. For an increasing number of stakeholders, financial statements and balance sheet information just isn’t enough. Emphasis is now on sustainability, especially related to reputational risk and corporate image. A sustainability incident, like discovering child labor in the global supply chain, can be extremely harmful to brand value and thus revenue and profits.

Strategies for Better Business Insights

To: CFO Research Services From: Senior finance executives Date: Fall 2011 Re: Growth prospects   Dear CFO Research Services: You may think from our recent response to your survey questionnaire, entitled “Strategies for Better Business Insight,” that we see bright growth prospects ahead. You’d be wrong. The real picture is more complicated. Although a majority…