Finance flash: the TOP-10 articles of week 45


Do you want to keep up to date with the latest developments in finance, but you are short of time? Don't worry. CFO South Africa weekly collects 10 of the most important articles from international media for your convenience.

1. What the US election could mean for global industry
Donald Trump was elected US president Tuesday, sending a political outsider to the White House. The win defied polls predicting his opponent, former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, would be the victor. Businesses around the world have been well into preparations for a Trump administration. But it hasn't been easy to predict what a Trump administration will offer industry and trade. CGMA Magazine asked management accountants and finance leaders what opportunities and challenges they're expecting. Here's what they had to say.

2. Blindsided by Trump's Victory? Behavioral Science Explains
When Leslie John, an associate professor at Harvard Business School, arrived at work on the morning of the U.S. presidential election between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, she was worried. John is an expert in behavioral decision research and studies the various innate flaws and biases that impede human reasoning. As a supporter of Clinton, she wondered whether the same cognitive traps that she studies in a laboratory could be leading to overconfidence about the likelihood of a Clinton victory.

3. 3 Ways to Better Understand Your Emotions
Dealing effectively with emotions is a key leadership skill. And naming our emotions — what psychologists call labeling — is an important first step in dealing with them effectively. But it's harder than it sounds; many of us struggle to identify what exactly we are feeling, and often times the most obvious label isn't actually the most accurate. There are a variety of reasons why this is so difficult: We've been trained to believe that strong emotions should be suppressed….

4. What CEOs Must Learn From Trump's Victory
On the morning we went to press for our Dec. 1 issue, America woke up to the news that Donald Trump would be the U.S. President come January. It's too early to know what that will mean for business and for the country as a whole. But what we do know is the social and political climate that gave rise to Trump's victory. We live in a time of moral outrage. If you listened to partisans on either side of election 2016, it was a contest between—or a protest of—a criminally corrupt politician and a serial sex offender, even though neither candidate had been formally charged with, much less convicted of, such crimes.

5. Starting at the source: Sustainability in supply chains
The next 10 to 15 years will present major opportunities for consumer companies. Some 1.8 billion people are expected to join the global consuming class by 2025, a 75 percent increase over 2010.1 Consumer spending should rise even more than the number of consumers as household incomes swell and people use bigger shares of their budgets to buy consumer goods. China, for example, is on track to gain 100 million working-age consumers by 2030, and it is expected that their spending on personal products will be double the current rate.2

6. Trump's Corporate Tax Reforms: What CFOs Need to Know
After a dramatic upset victory in one of the most bitterly contested presidential races in recent history, Donald Trump now has some serious work to do. His corporate tax policies—which are vital to his platform of domestic growth and repatriation of U.S. income and jobs—will require significant changes to the Internal Revenue Code. CFOs should familiarize themselves with these proposed changes well before Trump's inauguration in order to fully explore the opportunities and risks associated with each corporate tax policy.

7. Plotting Your Tech Spending for 2017
As last-minute year-end budget jockeying takes place, CFOs are looking for the optimal return on their technology investments. Here are five articles looking at some of the top considerations when evaluating your IT spending:
- 10 Questions for Technology Optimists
- The Transformers
- Disappointed with FP&A? Ramp Up Tech Spending
- Robots, Robots Everywhere
- IT Spending to Grow 3.3% in Next 5 Years

8. How a company's culture can limit data breaches
Strong internal controls, robust training and education, and stringent data management policies have been shown to reduce employees' carelessness with valuable information such as a company's strategic vision or its customers' personal data. But all that supposed strength - website filtering, complex password requirements, and two-factor authentication - is trumped by a softer and sometimes forgotten way to cut down on data breaches from unintentional employee mistakes: company culture.

9. Bridging the Trust Gap: Why Companies Are Poised to Fail with Big Data
Companies' data stewardship practices and consumers' expectations are fundamentally at odds. Most companies approach privacy and data usage from a narrow legal or regulatory perspective. They ask whether their data collection and management practices are consistent with laws and regulations and meet disclosure requirements. Unfortunately for most companies, consumers take a wider and much less legalistic approach to these issues. They want to be informed about how companies gather and safeguard data about them, and they want to understand the different ways in which companies use personal data. Additionally, they want that information delivered in clear language.

10. The 1 Powerful Quality of People With High Emotional Intelligence
If you're a leadership geek like me, you probably know that for the better part of 50 years, thought leaders and scholars the world over have conducted mountains of research to answer the question: What are the characteristics of great leaders? I'm going to posit that one cannot, and will not, be the "prototype" leader without one particular and crucial trait for success. In fact, I'll go as far as saying that this is the one leadership trait every manager in charge of people, or any person aspiring to lead others, absolutely must add to their development in 2017.

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