Essay Assignment Question And Guidelines BFF5280

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BFF5280 S1 2015
Dr Shrimal Perera

BFF5280 institutional asset and liability management
Group assignment - guidelines and requirements
Semester 1, 2015

This document should be read in conjunction with BFF5280 Unit Guide.

Weighting: 30% (30 marks)

Due date: Friday, 22 May by 5pm
A penalty of 10% of the total mark allocated to this assessment task will be deducted for each day, or part thereof, it is late.

Group formation and registration: Students should form their own groups of no more than two members.

The Chief Examiner (CE) should then be informed of group

composition via email ( by 5pm, 13 March. Use only
Monash student email address and state “BFF5280 Group Registration” as the title.
This email should clearly state students' surnames, other names, Monash IDs, and valid telephone contact numbers in its body. In return email, groups will be informed of their 'assignment firm' by the CE. Emails which do not conform to above instructions will not be returned.

Assignment task: For the purpose of the assignment, each group represents the most senior risk officers in the firm, and has responsibility for risk assessment and evaluation.
In its advisory capacity, your group has been requested by the Board to evaluate the firm’s business and financial risk with a view to recommending a financially justified risk management strategy for the next strategic planning horizon (3 years).
The outcome of the evaluation should reflect the group’s opinions of what the strategy should be, and how it should be implemented.

Students are required to think innovatively (not just adopt the existing risk strategy of the firm), and make assumptions where necessary to overcome the hurdles they confront. These hurdles may include;

BFF5280 S1 2015
Dr Shrimal Perera

any deficiencies in data availability about the firm, its industry, and its competitors, and

any problems with managing an overly broad scope of operations in their allocated company.

Preparing the report : To prepare the report students will need to complete the following steps:

1. Understand and evaluate the firm’s present products and/or services and markets
(research its web site and annual reports). DO NOT CONTACT THE COMPANY
DIRECTLY. (Most companies have better things to do than to respond to lots of questions from university students!) If the firm has more than one operating division, each with very different products and services, focus on the major division and its products and services only.

2. Undertake a review of

the firm’s industry, including its major competitors (do not agonise over exact matches for competitors – be practical based on what information is reasonably readily available),

the current state of the economy in so far as it affects the firm and its industry, and •

the rest of the external environment (e.g. a PEST or Porter analysis)

SWOT analyses

If the firm operates in more than one industry, focus on the major industry it operates in (not all industries).

3. Undertake a financial and strategic analysis of the for the past 3 years:

Download the annual reports from the firm’s web site, enter the figures for the last three years into an Excel spreadsheet and analyse them. The diverse nature of the companies means that not all the ratios will apply, and students may have to be innovative, and create some ratios of their own. Do NOT simply rely on Aspect Huntley (Fin Analysis) ratio analysis.

Compare the firm’s position/performance with its listed peers/competitors as identified above.

BFF5280 S1 2015
Dr Shrimal Perera

Reflect major analysts’ concerns as expressed in their reports or in news reports. (These will often contain ratios of particular relevance to the firm).

Use the information up to the last financial year available at the start of the semester for the analysis i.e. if half way through the semester the firm issues another annual report, or announces a takeover or is taken