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How credit unions can protect themselves from staggered contracts and trickery

first_img 10SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Preston Packer Preston Packer is the Director of Sales & Marketing for FLEX. Preston has been with FLEX since 2000 and has worked in various sales management roles over that time. Preston’… Web: www.flexcutech.com Details If you haven’t reviewed your credit union’s vendor technology agreements lately, perhaps you should. In recent years, many core providers have not only employed, but embraced a staggered contract strategy in a deliberate effort to entrap clients. Staggering contracts represent one of the credit union industry’s most insidious little secrets receiving virtually no attention.Nevertheless, given the velocity with which technology changes (think mobile banking), managerial prudence demands strict attention to the subject.Paving the way to such a practice are the contracts themselves. Recently, credit union core processing agreements have exploded into lengthy documents filled with riddling language of contradiction and confusion.In order to avoid the unpleasantness of getting stuck in an unwanted relationship is to first be aware that the practice of staggering contracts exists, and is furthermore, aggressively pursued by many credit union core processors.The next step would be to follow a few simple rules to protect yourself.Surprise!! In For Another Five: Remove automatic renewal language. Such language does not benefit the credit union. If you are uncertain as to whether your present agreement possesses such language, find out. Most only require a simple letter of notification. However, be aware that most agreements require such notifications be sent one year prior to the termination date.We Regret to Inform You: Document your communications and insist upon confirmation. Some vendors may attempt to ignore any notification and often claim that they never received it.Good Morning Rip Van Winkle: Avoid signing long term agreements. Technology agreements beyond five years ignore the speed with which technology changes and the world in which we now live.You Signed What? Do not authorize any employee to sign an agreement absent internal review. Openly discuss the practice in management meetings. It will serve to explain why it is essential for the credit union to maintain a unified contractual policy.Align Your Planets: Make your position of syncing contracts clear to your legal council. As stated, many of today’s agreements are long and confusing. They often appear to say one thing only to be overridden by that of another service agreement. Insist that any and all language involving the term of respective services are carefully reviewed and synchronized.Choose a CU Vendor Partner you Can TrustYou’ve heard the saying “trust your gut.”  If your gut instinct is making you nervous or leary of a vendor, there is sometimes very good reason.  It always makes sense to involve others from your organization and discuss openly any concerns you may have.  Choosing a credit union core data processor you can trust is key.last_img read more

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Financial Reporting Council unveils upsized investor advisory group

first_imgFaith Ward, Brunel Pension PartnershipDaniel Summerfield, co-head of responsible investment at USS Investment Management, the in-house manager for the £60bn (€68.1bn) Universities Superannuation Scheme;Faith Ward, chief responsible investment officer at the Brunel Pension Partnership, a £30bn local government pension scheme (LGPS) asset pool;Janice Turner, founding co-chair of the Association of Member-Nominated Trustees;Michael Marshall, director of responsible investment and engagement at LGPS Central, another of the new LGPS asset pools; andSimon Siu, deputy head of finance at the BT Pension Scheme.Asset managers are represented by:Amra Balic, managing director in BlackRock’s investment stewardship team for the Europe, Middle East and Africa region;Andrew Cave, head of governance and sustainability at Baillie Gifford;Ben Yeoh, senior portfolio manager of global equities at RBC Global Asset Management;David Gorman, head of research at Castlefield Partners, a Manchester-based investment group;Leon Kamhi, head of responsibility for Hermes Investment Management; andNatasha Landell-Mills, head of stewardship at Sarasin & Partners. The group is intended to serve several related purposes. The FRC said it would provide a regular forum for it to engage with representatives from across the investment chain on various issues, including its strategy, new policies and standards, on governance, stewardship, reporting and audit matters.The watchdog said the group would also help it “to better understand the investment community’s views of FRC effectiveness”.The establishment of the investor advisory group comes as the FRC faces a government-commissioned independent review following criticism of its role in the collapse of contractor Carillion. Some parties – including the Local Authority Pension Fund Forum – have called for the organisation to be shut down.The FRC is due to publish a revised version of the UK’s corporate governance code this summer. It is also reviewing the stewardship code, and a formal consultation on changes to this could be published later this year.Who’s who?The five pension fund representatives include public and private sector schemes: Carine Smith Ihenacho, Norges Bank Investment ManagementCarine Smith Ihenacho, chief corporate governance officer at Norges Bank Investment Manager, the manager of Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, has also been appointed to the group.The other members, from rating agencies, proxy advisory firms and the sell-side, are:Kazim Razvi, global head of accounting research and policy at Fitch Ratings;Laurie Fitzjohn-Sykes, corporate governance lead for HSBC’s global research;Paul Marsland, senior analyst in the environmental, social and corporate governance team at broker Kepler Chevreux;Nathan Leclercq, head of UK research at proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services; andMohammed Amin, representing retail investor associations UKSA and ShareSoc.The membership can be viewed here.center_img The UK’s audit regulator has appointed a 17-strong committee of investors to help inform its future work on issues such as governance and stewardship.The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) initially intended to appoint 12 members, but expanded the size of the investor advisory group after receiving more than 30 applications.The FRC, which is also responsible for the UK’s corporate governance and stewardship codes, said it would use the group as “a formal way of understanding key areas of concern and emerging risks from the perspective of investors”. Its first meeting is next month.The advisory group includes representatives from five pension funds, six asset managers, and the corporate governance chief of Norway’s giant sovereign wealth fund.last_img read more

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Saudi Arabia bars entry for pilgrims over coronavirus

first_imgDUBAI – Saudi Arabia on Thursdaysuspended visas for visits to Islam’s holiest sites for the “umrah”pilgrimage, an unprecedented move triggered by coronavirus fears that raisesquestions over the annual hajj. The kingdom, which hosts millions ofpilgrims every year in the cities of Mecca and Medina, also suspended visas fortourists from countries with reported infections as fears of a pandemic deepen. Muslims pilgrims gather outside the door of the Kaaba, Islam’s holiest shrine, in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. AFPcenter_img Saudi Arabia, which so far has reportedno cases of the virus but has expressed alarm over its spread in neighbouringcountries, said the suspensions were temporary. It provided no timeframe forwhen they will be lifted. (AFP)last_img

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