AFMP4
Syllabus A. Role Of The Senior Financial Adviser A4. Management of international trade and finance

A4c. The management of international finance 3 / 11

Question 4c -

Furlion Co manufactures heavy agricultural equipment and machinery which can be used in difficult farming conditions. Furlion Co’s chief executive has been investigating a significant opportunity in the country of Naswa, where Furlion Co has not previously sold any products. The government of Naswa has been undertaking a major land reclamation programme and Furlion Co’s equipment is particularly suitable for use on the reclaimed land. Because of the costs and other problems involved in transporting its products, Furlion Co’s chief executive proposes that Furlion Co should establish a plant for manufacturing machinery in Naswa. He knows that the Naswan government is keen to encourage the development of sustainable businesses within the country.

Initial calculations suggest that the proposed investment in Naswa would have a negative net present value of $1·01 million. However, Furlion Co’s chief executive believes that there may be opportunities for greater cash flows in future if the Naswan government expands its land reclamation programme. The government at present is struggling to fund expansion of the programme out of its own resources and is looking for other funding. If the Naswan government obtains this funding, the chief executive has forecast that the increased demand for Furlion Co’s products would justify $15 million additional expenditure at the site of the factory in three years’ time. The expected net present value for this expansion is currently estimated to be $0.

It can be assumed that all costs and revenues include inflation. The relevant cost of capital is 12% and the risk free rate is 4%. The chief executive has estimated the likely volatility of cash flows at a standard deviation of 30%.

One of Furlion Co’s non-executive directors has read about possible changes in interest rates and wonders how these might affect the investment appraisal.

Required:
(c) Discuss the possibility of the Naswan government obtaining funding for further land reclamation from the World Bank, referring specifically to the International Development Association. (4 marks)

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Question 5a -

Strom Co is a clothing retailer, with stores selling mid-price clothes and clothing accessories throughout Europe. It sells its own-brand items, which are produced by small manufacturers located in Africa, who work solely for Strom Co.

The recent European sovereign debt crisis has affected a number of countries in the European Union (EU). Consequently, Strom Co has found trading conditions to be extremely difficult, putting pressure on profits and sales revenue.

The sovereign debt crisis in Europe resulted in countries finding it increasingly difficult and expensive to issue government bonds to raise funds.

Two main reasons have been put forward to explain why the crisis took place: firstly, a number of countries continued to borrow excessive funds, because their expenditure exceeded taxation revenues; and secondly, a number of countries allocated significant sums of money to support their banks following the ‘credit crunch’ and the banking crisis.

In order to prevent countries defaulting on their debt obligations and being downgraded, the countries in the EU and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) established a fund to provide financial support to member states threatened by the risk of default, credit downgrades and excessive borrowing yields. Strict economic conditions known as austerity measures were imposed on these countries in exchange for receiving financial support.

The austerity measures have affected Strom Co negatively, and the years 2011 and 2012 have been particularly bad, with sales revenue declining by 15% and profits by 25% in 2011, and remaining at 2011 levels in 2012.

On investigation, Strom Co noted that clothing retailers selling clothes at low prices and at high prices were not affected as badly as Strom Co or other mid-price retailers. Indeed, the retailers selling low-priced clothes had increased their profits, and retailers selling luxury, expensive clothes had maintained their profits over the last two to three years.

In order to improve profitability, Strom Co’s board of directors expects to cut costs where possible. A significant fixed cost relates to quality control, which includes monitoring the working conditions of employees of Strom Co’s clothing manufacturers, as part of its ethical commitment.

Required:

Explain the role and aims of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and discuss possible reasons why the austerity measures imposed on European Union (EU) countries might have affected Strom Co negatively. (10 marks)

Question 5b -

Strom Co is a clothing retailer, with stores selling mid-price clothes and clothing accessories throughout Europe. It sells its own-brand items, which are produced by small manufacturers located in Africa, who work solely for Strom Co.

The recent European sovereign debt crisis has affected a number of countries in the European Union (EU). Consequently, Strom Co has found trading conditions to be extremely difficult, putting pressure on profits and sales revenue.

The sovereign debt crisis in Europe resulted in countries finding it increasingly difficult and expensive to issue government bonds to raise funds.

Two main reasons have been put forward to explain why the crisis took place: firstly, a number of countries continued to borrow excessive funds, because their expenditure exceeded taxation revenues; and secondly, a number of countries allocated significant sums of money to support their banks following the ‘credit crunch’ and the banking crisis.

In order to prevent countries defaulting on their debt obligations and being downgraded, the countries in the EU and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) established a fund to provide financial support to member states threatened by the risk of default, credit downgrades and excessive borrowing yields. Strict economic conditions known as austerity measures were imposed on these countries in exchange for receiving financial support.

The austerity measures have affected Strom Co negatively, and the years 2011 and 2012 have been particularly bad, with sales revenue declining by 15% and profits by 25% in 2011, and remaining at 2011 levels in 2012.

On investigation, Strom Co noted that clothing retailers selling clothes at low prices and at high prices were not affected as badly as Strom Co or other mid-price retailers. Indeed, the retailers selling low-priced clothes had increased their profits, and retailers selling luxury, expensive clothes had maintained their profits over the last two to three years.

In order to improve profitability, Strom Co’s board of directors expects to cut costs where possible. A significant fixed cost relates to quality control, which includes monitoring the working conditions of employees of Strom Co’s clothing manufacturers, as part of its ethical commitment.

Required:

Suggest, giving reasons, why the austerity measures might not have affected clothing retailers at the high and low price range, as much as the mid-price range retailers like Strom Co. (4 marks)