Thomas Armes has more than 15 years of foreign exchange experience, with a focus on accounting and hedge issues. He is a frequent public speaker and has addressed the Southern Center for International Studies (Atlanta, GA), Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (Richmond, VA), and TEXPO (Regional AFP - Dallas, TX) on topics such as “Establishing and Maintaining an FX Hedging Program.”
Armes has published a number of articles and white papers and has recently received recognition for his article “Addressing Increased Counterparty Risk in Foreign Exchange Markets.” He focuses on developing customer relationships by differentiating PNC and offering clients a full suite of hedging products, including spot, forward, options, swaps, and structured solutions.
He is a member of the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce’s Global Business Committee, a NASD Series 7 General Securities Representative and an NASD Series 63 Uniform Securities Agent. He is also a Certified Treasury Professional (CTP), as designated by the Association for Financial Professionals.
Armes holds a master’s degree in business administration, international finance from Mercer University, Macon, Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in humanities from Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida.
Robert Giannone is responsible for managing the foreign exchange sales and consulting teams for PNC’s East Coast markets. Located in Philadelphia, he specializes in providing advisory and execution services in foreign currency exposure management. He has worked extensively with all types of currency risk management instruments, including forwards, options, cross currency swaps and derivatives. Giannone frequently conducts seminars in foreign currency risk management and related topics. Prior to joining the Capital Markets group, he was a relationship manager within PNC Bank’s Corporate Finance group. In that role, he was responsible for developing and managing relationships with mid-size and large corporations in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Giannone has a bachelor of science/bachelor of arts degree in economics from Rider University, Lawrence Township, New Jersey, and a master’s degree in business administration from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey.
Associate, Foreign Exchange, PNC Capital Markets
Managing Director, PNC's Capital Markets group
Agricultural Opportunities in Canada
Consolidation is a key growth strategy. A robust agriculture equipment sector includes the financing tools and mechanisms farmers need to access state-of-the-art equipment. Read Now »
Effectively Manage International Cash Flow
U.S. businesses today may need foreign exchange services if they buy product from overseas suppliers or if they sell product internationally and have foreign currency receivables. Read Now »
Managing Foreign Exchange Risk
Protect your business.
Thursday, June, 15, 2017, 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Evaluate current risk management practices, including the establishment of a hedge policy. Ensure that your internal policies and controls correctly account for risks. Update your management reporting systems to correctly list your FX exposures and hedging activity.
Pension plan sponsors are faced with a volatile political and macro landscape that presents significant opportunities and risks.
There is uncertainty around the timing and potential size of Federal Reserve rate hikes, the potential impact on the longer end of the curve, the policies of a new administration, and the ability of the economy to maintain the positive momentum of the last eight years.
Even though the Liquidity Coverage Ratio is targeted at banks, your banking relationship — and therefore your business — may be affected.
The Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) was created by banking regulators to enhance the banking industry’s ability to absorb shocks resulting from financial and economic stress and to strengthen the industry’s processes for monitoring and managing liquidity. Over the long term, the LCR rule will benefit your business by increasing the strength of the banking industry.
Pension plan sponsors face a volatile landscape that presents significant opportunities and risks, especially if they have a legacy defined benefit plan, or are considering a merger.
Healthcare systems are complicated organizations, managing their liabilities to maintain credit ratings in a competitive environment. Pension risk is a liability many systems face and several strategies available are highlighted in this article.
Today’s rising interest rate environment may make it possible to improve your return on short-term cash.
Investment policies should include formalized forecasting and contingency plans to prepare key decision-makers for unexpected events. Contingency plans should include a scenario analysis that details events of varying risk or magnitude and how the company will react. For example — divest, stay the course or become more conservative.
Corporate financial managers must consider the impact of interest rate forecasts, future GDP estimates and potential tax reform on corporate cash strategies.
A number of short-term investment options have become part of the consideration set because of the rising market. They include variable net asset value prime money market funds, separately managed accounts and conservative ultra-short bond funds.
PNC’s economists are predicting increases in 2017 and 2018. A new administration in Washington and political changes in Europe may also affect interest rates.
What does the future hold for interest rates? How will the new interest rate environment affect your borrowing strategies and how can you mitigate the risks? We asked Tina Hwang from PNC’s Capital Markets group to weigh in.
Uncertainty regarding U.S. economic strength, global considerations and unanticipated events will likely result in continued market volatility over the near term.
We follow a consistent and disciplined approach to investing, seeking diversified sources of return. In our opinion, investors are best served if they work with their advisor to focus on their long-term goals, with an asset allocation that is appropriate for the risk profile and return objectives of their unique circumstances.
Cyber criminals are finding new and subtler ways to infiltrate legitimate businesses to conceal or advance their objectives.
As a financial institution that is focused on creating long-term, collaborative relationships with its customers, PNC believes strongly that the USA PATRIOT Act requirement to know our customers, their ownership, business purpose, suppliers and customers benefits our national security — and your security as well.
As 2017 begins, stock and oil prices are moving higher and economic outlooks for 2017 are being revised.
Economic growth will be faster in 2017-2018 with assists from consumer spending, construction spending, business investment and Federal government spending, more than offsetting weakness in U.S. exports as the dollar continues to strengthen and growth outside the U.S. remains slow.
Payments fraud attempts are widespread. Understand how these schemes compromise your business. Taking action to prevent them is critical to your defensive strategy.
Seventy-three percent of organizations experienced actual or attempted payments fraud in 2015 — up from 62% in 2014. Cybercriminals often initiate fraudulent requests from email accounts that appear to be from a company executive or a known external partner. Employees need to recognize the characteristics of a fraudulent payment or change request.
Stocks and bonds are expensive relative to history, growth remains sluggish, and corporate earnings have been unable to gather sustainable momentum.
We remain in a difficult market to forecast, particularly regarding the complex interactions between what we see as the weak fundamental backdrop and how current monetary policy might affect the dollar, interest rates, and investor risk preferences.
As e-commerce moves towards 10% share of total retail sales, mobile commerce is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years.
Widespread consumer adoption of payment technologies can lead to demand in the commercial space. For these reasons, trends in consumer payment innovation can be early indicators for changes in commercial payments.
Do political trends influence interest rates during an election cycle?
Companies should be armed with a comprehensive risk management policy and exercise discipline in implementing their hedging strategy regardless of the political environment and market conditions. Prepare to implement your hedging strategy in a timely manner.
The controls that come with the latest commercial payment methods enable CFOs, controllers and program administrators to exercise greater control over payment systems and practices.
The potential benefits associated with strong controls can be significant in terms of cost savings and peace of mind. Conversely, failure to implement appropriate payment controls can subject an organization to unnecessary financial risk.
You can find relief by improving management of invoice processing through payment.
Invoice automation can help you optimize the use of employee resources, significantly decrease the cost of processing invoices, help you capture vendor discounts more reliably and increase scale within your back office.
It's clear that corporations and individuals need to understand the risks and opportunities as an uncertain situation evolves.
Britain's Brexit vote upended expectations with 51.9 % of voters backing the "leave" campaign versus 48.1% backing "remain." The result sent shock waves through the markets and created an unstable political environment in the United Kingdom in the weeks following.
When planning for risk, start with the easiest and least expensive measures and work through the options, weighing whether each measure can address each risk appropriately.
Those who are perceived to have deep pockets present attractive litigation targets. Professionals and business owners are well aware of their risks. Many of these professionals can face malpractice claims, breach of contract claims, and personal injury claims, but there are a multitude of additional risks that professionals and employers confront.
Chart provides detailed information on Money Market Fund regulation considerations at a glance.
Intended to preserve the benefits of money market funds while increasing transparency and strengthening investor confidence, new regulations effective in October 2016 will require a re-evaluation of your cash management strategy.
The federal election will affect policy and conditions for business and investing for at least the next four years. This uncertainty may not be helpful for upward market momentum.
It’s too soon to make predictions about what’s in store for investors during the next presidential term. However, review of current conditions and past patterns makes it likely that investors could see quite a bit of market volatility for the near term.
The industry experienced increased fraud activity in advance of EMV with data breaches hitting high-profile brands.
Improve your awareness of Card-Not-Present (CNP) fraud with the adoption of EMV. Understand how PNC’s fraud strategies and intelligent neural network can help prevent fraud while balancing risk with the cardholder experience. Understand how PNC’s fraud strategies and intelligent neural network can help prevent fraud while balancing risk with the cardholder experience.
The healthcare cost trajectory has significant implications for companies and employees today --and on retirement prospects for individuals down the road.
Changes in healthcare are monumental. It’s hard enough for employers to understand the new landscape. It can be even harder for employees, leaving a significant gap in understanding between the two groups, particularly when it comes to retirement planning.
Create an education program that incorporates both financial and physical wellness for your employees.Communicate with your employees to identify key topics of concern.
Employers can play a significant role in helping their employees achieve a financially secure retirement by addressing the least understood threat to their retirement dreams — the cost of healthcare. The failure to plan adequately for the increase in demand for healthcare in retirement and their projected costs may upend even the best-laid plans.
The Department of Labor has issued a final rule that expands the definition of fiduciary “investment advice” under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended.
The Final Rule confirms that individuals who provide investment advice to owners of Individual Retirement Account (IRA), Health Savings Account (HSA) and similar individual arrangements will be considered fiduciaries. In addition, the Final Rule expands fiduciary advice to include rollover recommendations.
In September 2015, the 10-year swap spread turned negative, and today, all swap spreads with a tenor of 5 years and greater are negative.
Current negative swap spreads present an opportunity for market participants favoring fixed rate debt. The bank markets traditionally price over LIBOR, and the bond markets price over Treasuries. By electing to pay a fixed swap rate, a market participant enjoys the benefit of negative swap spreads through a lower swap rate paid for the life of the contract.
Learn how to better manage intercompany payments, reduce transaction costs and improve intracompany reconciliation.
Multinational corporations face many challenges in managing growth across multiple continents, currencies, and accounting systems. Treasury managers can facilitate cross-border settlements among affiliates, increase productivity and generate cost savings with a multilateral netting solution.
Today’s cybercriminals can attack your business from all sides.
They may target employees at any level in your organization in an attempt to execute fraudulent payments. Chief information officers and risk managers, along with employees who may not typically be part of the security conversation will find this webinar useful and compelling.
There are seven common principles a business owner family can use to successfully transition to a financial family. These principles are outlined in this paper.
After the sale of a family business, the business owner family must transition to a financial family. An important element of a family’s successful transition is an understanding that the business purpose that drove and united the family. Without a common purpose, the family does not have a common goal or focus.
Many American workers are not prepared to retire, no matter what age.
A study by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System found only about 25% of individuals they surveyed were actively saving for retirement. The Fed study noted that the shift from defined-benefit plans to defined-contribution plans has placed greater personal responsibility on employees to plan and save for their own retirement.
Companies must do their part in maintaining the integrity of the trade supply chain.
About 80 percent of illicit financial flows from developing countries are now channeled through trade-based money laundering (TBML), according to Global Financial Integrity (GFI), a research and advocacy organization.
Rising interest rates will affect your money market deposits, interest-bearing checking accounts, sweep investments and time deposits.
We are in uncharted territory. Interest rates have been static for longer than at any point in history. There are new reforms and regulations that did not exist before. And the economy is exceptionally volatile, both domestically and globally.
An estate plan should be dynamic with changes being made as your life changes. This article may offer some guidance as to when you should review your estate plan.
With greater wealth comes a greater potential need to plan. Estate taxes may now be an issue and you may want to explore various estate planning strategies to reduce your taxes or minimize the impact of those taxes. You may also want to establish trusts for children and grandchildren to better plan for their future.
PNC Healthcare commissioned Shapiro+Raj to explore changes in the healthcare environment and their impact on providers, payers, and employers. Here are the findings of that study.
Millennials will shape the future of American healthcare. They seek change throughout the system. They embrace retail and acute care clinics. They take the most responsibility for their own healthcare. They spend more time researching online, finding providers and getting others’ opinions and they will force much more change compared to Boomers and seniors.
The strength of the dollar, a favorable interest
rate environment and an abundance of cash on
hand may make this a good time for domestic
companies to invest outside the U.S.
Companies considering a cross-border merger or acquisition should evaluate the currency risk during the due-diligence stage of the deal to ensure that currency rate volatility does not adversely affect the target price.You can perform a “Value at Risk” analysis to quantify the currency risk between now and closing.
Canada’s Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions has granted PNC Bank Canada Branch (“PNC Canada”) a full-service branch license.
Canada is the United States' largest export market and the second largest source of imports after China. Companies doing business in Canada face a number of challenges as they deal with customs documentation and adapt their operations for sales tax accounting, procurement procedures and even packaging and labeling. PNC can help.
Foreign currency volatility has reduced earnings from both a transaction and translation perspective. Explore strategies for mitigating the currency impact on earnings and cash flow.
Find out how a strengthening dollar can create a headwind for companies doing business internationally. The recent spike in foreign currency volatility has taken a big bite out of earnings, from both a transaction and a translation perspective. This presentation helps explain these issues.
Cyber threat Special Agent Steve Lambo from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and others define the latest cyber fraud schemes and how to recognize potentially fraudulent activity.
Anyone with access to funds movement services needs to be aware of the latest fraud schemes and how to recognize potentially fraudulent or malicious activity. Representatives of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and PNC provide definitions of the most prevalent schemes, along with strategies to mitigate risk.
As international business grows more important to U.S. companies, it's vital to recognize that import and export activities are heavily regulated by the U.S. Government.
If you are conducting international business, if you are engaging in new types of transactions, if you are doing business with new entities or in new geographic regions, you may receive questions from government entities or your financial institution. Everyone involved is responsible for compliance and could face penalties or fines for noncompliance.
Fight fraud with the help of your bank.
Cards offer businesses and consumers alike significant convenience and cost savings. While many well-known retailers fell victim to credit card breaches over the past year, you can continue to enjoy the benefits of card usage while protecting your business from fraud.
Your financial well-being, like your health, can benefit from regular checkups — but where to start? Here is a step-by-step plan to improve your financial fitness.
Pay yourself first. Create a budget. Pay down credit card debt. Prepare a personal net worth statement. Review your estate planning documents. Rebalance your investment portfolio. Review your insurance and your tax plan and seek guidance from a qualified wealth management professional to improve your financial wel being.
Currency markets are experiencing a significant amount of volatility. Hedging programs can help companies protect profits and cash flow.
While most companies start with hedging balance sheet exposures as they are more visible, more are now considering hedging forecasted exposures such as sales or expenses. Hedging anticipated cash flows depends on the company’s ability to forecast reasonably accurately, although uncertainties can be managed by hedging a percentage of your anticipated exposure.
Find out how the Affordable Care Act came about, what some of the changes have been and the rising importance of consumer-driven healthcare among other topics.
Dealing with the many facets of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is a highly challenging endeavor for companies of all sizes. Changing regulations, the evolving nature of the exchanges, new options for individuals, implications for wealth planning and taxes are just a few of the issues that must be addressed.
Most businesses need both disaster planning and business resiliency strategies, but resilency can come into play almost every day.
Business resiliency plans ensure uninterrupted processing for essential functions. Most business interruptions fall into one or more of these 5 categories: hardware, facilities, network/telecom, software and people. With a strong business resiliency plan, you can be prepared and avoid the difficulties of recovery without one.
Fiduciaries have important responsibilities and are subject to strict standards of conduct. However, plan sponsors may not know who the fiduciaries to the plan are.
If you are involved in the administration of your company's retirement plan, it is important to understand what your role as a plan sponsor entails, as well as how to delegate parts of your fiduciary responsibility if you choose to do so. Even unintentional mistakes can lead to a breach of fiduciary duty that can have significant consequences.
Doing business with Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa can be challenging for companies accustomed to the certainties of mainstream currencies.
Although the BRICS proactively promote international business, their governments remain concerned that any sudden inflow or outflow of money could de-stabilize their economies. As a result, they have implemented restrictions on international transactions. Trade and capital payments are regulated and certain hedging practices are prohibited.
Business owners and corporate treasurers are reviewing their projections for funded debt levels over the next several years to manage their mix of fixed and floating rate debt.
A hedging solution called the yield curve efficient interest rate swap closely follows the expected future path of interest rates. The frequency and timing of the increases can be tailored to meet specific cash flow needs.
Yield curve efficient interest rate swaps closely follow the expected future path of interest rates. The frequency and timing of increases can be tailored to meet cash flow needs.
Interest rate derivatives can deliver a number of benefits in today’s environment. For example, they are completely customizable. Financial managers and treasury teams can use derivatives to fine tune their interest rate profiles and maturities according to their risk tolerance and cash flow needs.
Too many of our nation's businesses have been hit by cybercrime. Yours doesn't have to be one of them. Find out how to fight the latest ploys.
Just as the financial marketplace is driving to faster and more anonymous transactions, fraudsters are increasingly using old-fashioned methods to collect financial information that can enable them to compromise your accounts. Corporations, both large and small, as well as government entities, school districts and individuals, are vulnerable.
Cybercriminals are becoming increasingly malicious and sophisticated, using a combination of tactics to gain your trust. Find out how to thwart them.
Dozens of botnets have helped thieves heist more than $100 million from the accounts of businesses around the world. Hackers stole more than $1 million from the payroll accounts of a Washington State hospital. Cyber thieves operating out of Ukraine are believed to be responsible for massive ebanking losses over the past few years.
Many companies that had previously elected to hedge with an interest rate swap will be faced with early termination or make whole of their current interest rate swap.
In the face of moderate economic growth in the United States and overseas, short and long-term interest rates remain at historically low levels. There are many flexible and creative hedging solutions available. You should review the expected duration of your debt portfolio and consult with your capital markets profession to discuss your options.
Canada is a vitally important market for U.S. companies. The United States sells more goods to Canada than to all 27 countries of the European Union combined.
The ease and longevity of our relationship with Canada can make us forget that the enormous territory to the north is not just an extension of the United States. Like any other global market, Canada has its own customs, laws, rules, and regulations that require just as much attention and insight as those of our more distant trading partners.
Healthcare costs are forcing a new calculus on traditional retirement planning. They are rising faster than inflation and will consume a growing percentage of our spending as we grow older.
Individuals appear to be significantly underestimating what health care in retirement will cost them. According to a report issued by the Stanford Center on Longevity, “43% of middle-income Americans are paying more for healthcare with Medicare than they expected they would.” One reason for this may be that many are overlooking the prospect of long-term care.
Does your company have a well-thought out investment policy? Does your policy have clear, measurable objectives? Has it been written down and shared with the appropriate team?
Putting your investment policy in writing is the foundation of effective investing. Your policy should provide benchmarks to help you evaluate how well it is working and what changes may be needed to make it more effective.
Unquestionably Dodd-Frank and the Consumer Protection Act are the most comprehensive financial regulatory reforms our government has taken since the Great Depression. They affect many areas of the financial markets.
Title VII of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act imposes a new regulatory regime on the U.S. swaps market. As a swap dealer, PNC must comply with these requirements and there are a number of regulations that will directly affect swap end-users.This webinar replay provides an overview of the new regulatory environment.
When you contemplate the sale of your business, market timing, economic considerations, competitive trends, tax strategies and future capital requirements should be taken into account.
Merger and acquisition ("M&A") transactions can raise a series of important considerations that significantly impact business owners. When is the right time for an M&A transaction? What steps are required? When selling a company, how can business owners achieve liquidity and maximize value while still looking after the best interests of their company?
There are five threats to retirement that investors should be aware of. This article discusses those risks and how investors can seek to mitigate them.
Thinking about retirement is no longer a future event for many Americans; most recognize the need for careful planning throughout their working years. While it is a positive that Americans are expected to live longer, this can add to the already daunting challenges of funding a comfortable retirement.
Learn about the state of the healthcare industry and the basic economics of healthcare. Get an overview of reform and challenges and the changes that are occurring.
Our panel of healthcare and treasury management leaders provides insight to help you address changes, including the postponement of the employer mandate reporting requirements, characteristics of the new exchanges, selecting a policy through an exchange and a background in healthcare economics.
A number of actions, when combined and layered effectively, can provide a robust defense against many major threats. Your financial institution can be a valuable ally in the fight.
Yesterday's cyber crimes were often intended to cause disruption by infecting your computers with harmful viruses. Today, they are increasingly malicious and sophisticated, using a combination of tactics to gain your trust...and access to your company's financial accounts.
Companies need to define a risk management objective. What are you trying to hedge and why? Every company has different metrics that should be incorporated into their hedging decisions.
Companies buying, selling or capitalizing a foreign business often overlook currency risks. including impacts on valuation, financial statements, and capitalization. Get specific, actionable information on currency risk management, including pre-close exposure/hedging, managing the currency impact of capitalization decisions and financial statement impacts.
PNC experts bring you real-world processes, procedures, and approaches that they have found to work best for clients wishing to mitigate foreign exchange risk.
As companies increase engagement with international trading partners and markets remain unpredictable, they must develop and adopt effective foreign exchange risk strategies. This webinar covers why you need an FX policy, elements of an effective policy, forecasting, budgeting and planning and considerations for the period between trade execution and maturity.
Since interest rates have declined, the interest rate swaps’ value is negative or a liability and must be considered as a cost in any refinancing or restructuring.
In the face of moderate economic growth in the United States and overseas, short and long term interest rates remain at historically low levels. A cancellable interest rate strategy can be used as a hedge against a specific debt facility or as a part of a larger strategy to manage duration of a debt portfolio.
The wrong strategy, the wrong partner and poor management can knock you off track in China. Learn about challenges in the operating environment.
Often companies initially focus their strategy for China on the basic how to’s: How do I start a company? How do I find an agent? How do I open a bank account? These are important questions. But these are not the issues that can inhibit your success in China.
The value of the U.S. dollar has always changed — and it will continue to change. So it's important to have a grasp on what it will be worth in the near future and longer-term.
Today the U.S. dollar is a “fiat” currency and is not supported by any physical asset. Put another way, the U.S. dollar represents value simply based on the confidence in the United States government and the United States economy. It is the full trust and belief in the power, trustworthiness, and reliability of the United States.
Hedging allows treasurers to protect profits and cash flow by locking in revenues, costs and global intercompany transactions, but accounting treatment can be uncertain.
Equity markets are highly volatile. Global currency markets have also been experiencing larger than normal swings. Fortunately foreign exchange hedging products such as forwards and options are available to protect against the potentially adverse impact of currency fluctuations.
Biases are the basis for cognitive and emotional errors when we apply them in financial markets and they often result in financial losses.
Humans have an amazing capacity for reasoning, memory, action, feelings and emotions. But capacity alone does not ensure that we will develop the proper biases to employ every day in predictive scenarios. In some cases, these biases come hardwired in our brains and work against us when it comes to predicting market movements.
Educate your organization about the myriad fraud schemes that can attack your system, including best practices for IT security. Also enhance the security of your computers and networks.
Just as the financial marketplace is driving to faster and more anonymous transactions, fraudsters are increasingly using old-fashioned methods to collect tid-bits of financial information that can enable them to compromise your accounts. Corporations both large and small as well as government entities, school districts and individuals are vulnerable.
Utilize financial models to inform decisions around hedging
With interest rates at all-time lows, some companies may have been lulled into a false sense of security about interest rate risk. However, the intermediate and long end of the yield curve has been trending up dramatically. Companies can utilize financial models to inform their decision around hedging a portion of their projected debt portfolio for longer durations.
Smart managers are sweetening their employee benefits package with additional perks to help their company stay competitive in the market for good employees.
Essentially, a workplace banking program is a package of discounted financial services and special benefits your company can offer to employees as part of your overall benefits package. Typically, there is no cost to participate, only rewards for both your company and your employees.
Credit is available with competitive terms for companies that see their bank as a vital resource. Here are tips for keeping an open relationship with your banker.
Imagine that you run a mid-size company with deep ties to an industry challenged by economic conditions. After decades of success, growth has stalled -- and your income statement is beginning to show it. Open communication with your banker puts everyone in a better position to structure and negotiate the right credit solutions for the challenges at hand.