Chicago Fed 11th Annual Risk Conference Round-Up

By Torrey and Gray | April 6, 2018

Torrey & Gray attended the 11th Annual Risk Conference at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago this week.  Charles Evans, the President and CEO of the Chicago Fed had a candid open conversation about the relative strength of the economy, predicted near term regulatory relief for mid-tier and community banks as well as opining on interest rate policy. On the topic of interest rate risk, Doreen Eberly, a Director in the Division of Risk Management Supervision for the FDIC, pointed out that in the low interest rate environment there have been very few de novo (new bank charters).  In a…

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Square Inc. Ponders Accounting Rules for Cryptocurrency Transactions

By Torrey and Gray | April 4, 2018

In a recent report from payment processor Square, Inc. they asserted that a lack of guidance in the largely untested waters of accounting for cryptocurrency transactions may affect how their financial performance is reported.  Citing the possibility of having to restate financials later, if future guidance is contradictory to their current approach. Also at issue is the mechanisms for which payment processors exchange currency pairings.  The possible risk is that regulatory pressure could be applied if their operations are determined to be brokering or advising – services that could possibly open the doors to state or federal regulator scrutiny.  For…

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Edward Hospital $92 Million Accounting Error Discovered

By Torrey and Gray | February 23, 2018

It can go both ways.  Sometime you find you have overestimated your reasonably collectible accounts receivable, and sometimes you can find you have been grossly under estimating the value of your service contracts.  Unfortunately for this hospital group based in Naperville, a huge error was discovered after realizing the reimbursement schedules in their accounting systems were not updated with accurate information.  So, shortly after cutting $50 Million off their operating budget (including employee layoffs), they soon discovered the need for a massive writeoff to their aging.  For the full article, Click Here. Torrey & Gray has staffed service contract audit…

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Talent Management Among Largest Risks to Banks

By Torrey and Gray | February 19, 2018

Talent Management is among top risks to banking institutions.  The American Banking Journal report also includes Cyber Security, Third-party and Regulatory Risks as well as Lend Risks round out the list.  Training and other talent management issues are particularly important for community banks, where fewer employees mean each rogue actor could wreak exponentially larger havoc.  For the full article click here and go to page 20. Identifying the best talent to complement your teams can be challenging.  Torrey & Gray has been a leading recruiting and staffing firm that helps banks identify and recruit the best talent for accounting, finance,…

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Arizona to Allow Tax Payments in Cryptocurrency

By Torrey and Gray | February 12, 2018

In a move that brings Arizona into a field of players getting into Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency space, the State has passed a bill allowing citizens to pay taxes in Bitcoin or other Cryptos.  For the full article Click Here.  This move could allow the state to potentially benefit from by setting a below market conversion rate that could allow them to profit on the required conversion to U.S. Dollars within 24 hours, as is required in the law.  Arizona ranks 33rd in Fiscal Condition Rank currently.  We see this move as being beneficial to their bottom line.  It also further…

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Banks Lack Data for Financial Crimes Compliance – Bain Reports

By Torrey and Gray | February 12, 2018

In a January report covering the financial services industry, Bain Company shines a light on how Banks and other financial services companies are tripping over themselves in an effort to comply with myriad regulations.  One reported that a client gets flagged because of the street name for their office.  All top banks surveyed reported a reliance on flawed manual data inputs and lack of enterprise integration.  Flawed and incomplete inputs result in flawed models.  As if that were not enough, not only is better data needed, MRM (Model Risk Management) groups must also possess savvy interpersonal and negotiating skills in order…

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Robotics in Accounting?

By Torrey and Gray | February 6, 2018

Everybody knows robotics have penetrated the auto manufacturing and warehousing industries, but how could that ever affect Accounting?  In her recent Article on, Dr. Kasthuri Henry references several sources, including an EY Report outlining how Robotics Process Automation can save 80% of the cost of a human to perform recurring tasks endlessly and without error. This will of course reduce the need for employees to perform certain tasks while at the same time requiring IT Finance specialists to create the systems to interact.  We feel this underscores the increasing need for IT professionals who support Finance to gain more…

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Cost of South Korea Winter Olympics

By Torrey and Gray | February 5, 2018

Which recently built structure is estimated to cost nearly $29 Million per use?  Answer: The Pyeonqchang Olympic Center in South Korea.  With the 2018 Winter Olympics starting next week, it is that time when the topic of the cost of hosting the Olympics arises.  This new open air arena has no future projected use after the Olympics and will be torn down, so with four events planned, the $116 Million price tag averages close to $30 Million per event.  For more information on the stadium Click Here. The Olympics, which begin Feb. 9, will cost South Korea about $13 Billion…

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More Evidence – Borrowing to Fund Pension Obligations a Bad Idea

By Torrey and Gray | February 1, 2018

The recent collapse of a British company whose roots date back 115 years underscores the risk of borrowing to cover dividend payments and pension funding obligations.  Carillion (43,000 employees and 28,000 pensioners) recently collapsed under the weight of poor pricing schemes, (apparently legal) mismanagement and a defined benefit burden that was not sustainable. Hopefully politicians in Chicago will take heed, but they probably will not. For an article on this topic Click Here. Torrey & Gray is a recruiting and staffing firm in the Chicago area that finds Controllers and other professionals who can help your organization avoid this type…

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Blockchain Immutability to Dramatically Alter Accounting Industry

By Torrey and Gray | January 31, 2018

As Blockchain technology finds it’s way into myriad industries, the potential for accounting and regulated business sectors is ripe for mass adoption.  This will also become a valuable tool for nonprofits to validate their income to expense ratios.  The trustless and immutable nature of a distributed ledger will transform the ease by which regulatory agencies verify audits.  This will eventually become adopted and divert working capital from non-revenue generating accounting and compliance expenses toward areas such as marketing, innovation, debt reduction and reduction of the cost of capital.  To read a Deloitte Whitepaper on this topic, Click Here.  CFO’s, Controllers…

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