Risk & Economy » 5 things FDs need to know this week

5 things FDs need to know this week

As the week comes to an end, we pick out five highlights from the past five days

1. Six banks join UBS blockchain plan

A UBS-led effort to create a digital cash system to speed up payments and transactions within financial services through the use of blockchain technology, has seen six new banks join.

Barclays, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Credit Suisse, HSBC, MUFG and State Street have joined the group, which hopes to launch the system in 2018.

The group is developing something called a “utility settlement coin” (USC) that provides a digital cash equivalent of each of the major currencies, backed by central banks.

UBS partnered with blockchain company, Clearmatics to launch the idea in 2015, later being joined by banks BNY Mellon, Deutsche Bank and Santander.


2. Internal auditors need to be reviewed every year after 7 years in post

The Chartered Institute of Internal Auditors (CIIA) has published a review into its FS code that requires UK companies to review its internal auditors every year after they have been in the post for seven years.

It follows rules already in place where companies have to put their external audit out to tender every 10 years, and changing external auditor at least every 20 years.

The revamped code also requires internal audit to report to the board annually on firms’ adherence to risk appetite frameworks and to review how firms have managed significant adverse events.

The new financial services code was produced with the support of the Bank of England, PRA, FCA, and FRC.


3. Renault-Nissan to make electric cars in China

The Renault-Nissan alliance have announced a joint venture with Chinese company, Dongfeng Motor, to co-develop and sell electric vehicles (EV) in China

The new joint venture, eGT New Energy Automotive Co. Ltd, will see Renault and Nissan hold a 25% stake each, and Dongfeng hold theremaining 50%.

Production of the EV is set to start in 2019, at a plant in Shiyan, Central China, that has a production capacity of 120,000 vehicles a year.

Accordign to the China association of automobile manufacturer’s, China is the world’s largest BEV market.


4. HMRC chasing big businesses for £24.8bn in underpaid tax

As HMRC continues its crackdown on tax avoidance, its Large Business Directorate has said that its investigations have identified a potential £24.8 billion in underpayments.

This figure is £3 billion more than last year and a 31% increase from £19 billion in 2014/15 , after the annual estimate was revealed when leading law firm Pinsent Masons made a freedom of information request.

A spokesperson for HMRC said “We are clear that large companies, like any other taxpayers, must pay the tax that is due and we do not settle for less.”


5. The first ICO Unicorns

OmiseGO and Qtum today reached a $1 billion market cap, according to coinmarketcap.com.

This makes them the first subtokens sold to investors to pass the unicorn mark based on the total value of coins that have been distributed.

OmiseGo’s token sale in July raised $25 million, with one token initially worth 27 cents, however that price has now risen to $11, while Qtum, which raised $15.6 million in March, has gone from a token being worth 30 cents to now being over $17.

An ICO is an initial coin offering and is explained by Nasdaq as ‘a fundraising mechanism in which new projects sell their underlying crypto tokens in exchange for bitcoin and ether.’ The process is similar to an IPO and most ICOs work by ‘having investors send funds (usually bitcoin or ether) to a smart contract that stores the funds and distributes an equivalent value in the new token at a later point in time.’


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