Sunday, August 26, 2012

complaint

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I am writing to formally register our concerns regarding monetary loss of revenue suffered by this Club via the recent installation of your product ‘King Of The Nile’. Pittwater RSL Club has always been a strong and supportive customer of Aristocrat Leisure Industries. This support is evident by Aristocrat holding 87% of the Cub’s total poker machine installation. I must at this stage point out that, we are more than pleased with their overall performance and subsequently, an look forward to a similar partnership in the future.


However, it is a matter of serious concern to us the amount of lost predicted revenue resulting from inaccurate information regarding this product. On Tuesday March 18, 00 this concern was verbally taken up with both yourself and our sales representative Steve Law. Your immediate action to reticify future similar results was greatly appreciated. I am aware that this option of change was only made possible by an approval being granted by the LAB on the day of the conversation. Further acknowledgement that prior warning of the uncertainty of the performance was given by Steve Law, however there was only ever mention of 1 or % variation. The tables attached to this report clearly demonstrates that the loss was far greater, averaging 5.1% for a period of months with the month of February resulting in a difference of 6.5%. In monetary terms this equates to an overall loss of $17,8.65 against the exceptive return for the duration of the machines installation.


The attached analysis concludes that the expected carding concern was far greater than predicted. Pittwater RSL Club has always operated their machines with a high player return. The minimum return to player being % up to a maximum of 6% for $1 and specialized machines. The player return for the ‘King Of The Nile’ had a known unpredictability however the extent of this variance was unknown or not informed. The product was purchased with the unstated faith that suitable testing had taken place by Aristocrat and until a more certain option had been approved the Club was willing to run the machines 1 or % above carding.


As such, I am writing to request possible monetary compensation or the revenue lost by Pittwater RS Cub be given consideration


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Please do not hesitate to contact me personally, so I can provide further information on this matter.


Yours faithfully


BRUCE SMITH JP ACCM


GENERAL MANAGER





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Saturday, August 25, 2012

any time

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the organizer that works the way you do. organize all your activities. Keep track of your calenders, organize papers, anything!! the fact that this little, handy-dany device is the best thing ever on your computer. On the road, at home, or even on vaction, this device is so easy and flexable.. youll feel lost without it!! Many other devices try to exceed what this is, but none succeed! i dont realy have any more to say.. so i am going to ramble, plaese do not read any further.. it will not help you in any way, at all. i have many issues about things going on in the world today. For one, the AIDS crisis in South Africa. People knew about this long ago, and only now are they calling it a crisis. People should learn from their mistakes before making the same ones over and over again. mebbe i should keep typiong until i reach the limit.. itll happen sooner or later, preferable sooner.. cuz i dont like typing bull that will help no one.. i just need help.. and this site will help me. oh dear oh dear oh dear... aah still not enough. many short words will do the trick!! it is a on the kick he she me you i do two to too they your me we just moo, all the little things in the world make one big thing.. perhapstoo big.. one will never know!! one will never know. o please let me be near my limit.. for i have gotten an eye ache


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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

TRADE UNION RECOGNITION

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1.0 Introduction


This report addresses the introduction of trade union recognition agreements and its role in the 1st century workplace. The report commences with the definition of trade unions and what the aims, objectives and prime functions are. We then go on to look at the structure and trade unions and identify who is involved within this organisation. Once we have distinguished trade unions, we proceed further and take a look at the role of the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC), (the organisation responsible for dealing with certain aspects as the trade union recognition agreement), lightly touching on how the policies and procedures are formulated, and again, who is involved in the process. Here we look at the core aims/objectives and primary functions of the CAC, before moving on to the growth and decline of trade unions � identifying why it was necessary to have a recognition agreement introduced. We then go on to analyse how organisations survive with trade unions and how they endure without trade unions. The report then proceeds on to look at the legislative requirements for a trade union recognition agreement and identifies which procedures must be carried out by different organisations, (where they apply), before a union is legible for recognition. Once this has been achieved, we progress on to summarising the article by identifying what type of issues the trade union expects to get involved with, within the organisation, and what other agreements the trade union introduces to work along with. Finally, the report concludes the trade union recognition agreement and how successful it is or is not.


.0 Trade Unions


Trade unions are the most collective form of organisation to any employer. They are a mechanism for change and can also be seen as a means for improving communication. It can be seen as an institution for implementing a source of ideas from employer to employee, in order to improve the organisation. Even though trade unions proceed on the basis of collective bargaining, not every individual’s accounts are taken into consideration. This is because, mainly generalities are formed to try and keep the majority happy. Performance related pay may also contribute to this. Everyone has the opportunity to use trade unions to create a channel of communication between organisations. This is due to factors like enormous sizes of many firms, and the given time factor.


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The most obvious threat is strikes. Substantially big industrial strikes at, especially, times of economic in capabilities can cause havoc and chaos. According to Webb, (10, p.1), a trade union is


‘A continuous association of wage earners for the purpose of maintaining or improving the conditions of their working lives’.


This is a classical definition that is perfectly relevant today also. However, it is not the only definition, as there are other opinions on how this should be viewed. A more contemporary view can be found through Rose, (001, p.1), provided by the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1, which states that a trade union is


‘An organisation (whether permanent or temporary) consisting wholly or mainly of workers of one or more descriptions whose principal purpose includes regulation of relations between workers of that description and employers or employers’ associations’.


The main characteristics that can define a trade union are occupied from Blackburn (167). If the organisation is able to fully incorporate the following characteristics, then it should be considered as a sincere and enthusiastic trade union


• The organisation is able to declare itself as a trade union.


• Identify and record itself as a trade union, with the Certification Officer which can then allow the organisation to a special legal status.


• Identify and record itself with the Certification Officer as an independent organisation, through the Certificate of Independence.


• Associating itself to the TUC, Labour Party or by joining a group of unions.


• Prioritising it to function on the primary aspiration that ensures the maintenance and improvement of conditions of its members.


• The possible use of authority to further its aims, which could for example be achieved by taking significant industrial action.


Trade unions organise mainly by occupation or industry. An example of an Occupational Union is Manufacturing, Science and Finance (MSF), which recruits from non-manual, mainly managerial occupations across industries. An example of an Industrial Union is the National Union of Mineworkers which recruits exclusively from the Coal Mining Industry.


.1 Objectives


The main aims and objectives of trade unions are best summarised by the Trade Union Congress (TUC). These are to


• Improve conditions of work in employment.


• Improve the substantial atmosphere at work.


• Get rid off total unemployment and national poverty.


• Achieve secure employment and income.


• Improve social security benefits.


• Achieve fair shares of income between men and women.


• Achieve industrial independence.


• Achieve a government voice.


• Improve public and social services.


• Achieve industrial control and planning through the public.


(Adapted from Rose, E. 001, p.1)


The above mentioned points are those identified by the TUC as the main aims and objectives of trade unions. However, some of these objectives remain yet to be achieved.


. Main Aim and Functions


The specific functions of trade unions can be found in individual Trade Union Rule Books. Here they are summarised under six headings


Collective Bargaining � Concerned with determining wages, hours and conditions of work for union members, and is a central function of trade unions.


Safeguarding Jobs � Prime function is to keep union members in their jobs and protect these jobs. They also deal with issues of redundancy, but certain legal requirements apply for a trade union to be consulted in this delicate matter.


Co-operation with Employers � This function varies amongst unions and also between employers.


Political Activities � The traditional role of trade unions here is to act as political pressure groups. This action may also vary between different unions as those affiliated with the Labour Party, provide a significant figure of the party funds.


Provision of Social Services � Sometimes funds are provided for health, unemployment, and reasons of redundancy or death. Legitimate strikes can also be catered for, depending on the size of the union and providing sufficient funds are available.


Provision of Friendly Services � Again, depending on the size of the union, facilities may be provided in clubrooms, for leisure purposes.


. Structure of Trade Unions


Trade unions are self-governing organisations which are answerable to their members for their policies and actions. Unions are on the whole replicated on the following structure


Members � People who have registered, by payment of subscription are legible to belong to a union.


Shop Stewards � Elected by union members as representatives in front of employers (management).


Branches � There to support union members on a local basis, from different organisations.


District and/or Regional Offices � Here, the personnel are usually full-time union executives. It is the paid job of these people to offer advice and support to local union members.


National Office � The union headquarter, offering support to members and responsible for bargaining or operating for improvements to their working conditions. The people at the top of the organisation are elected by the union’s members and normally consist of a General Secretary and a National Executive Committee.


Unions Structure Diagram


Union Members





Shop Stewards


(Union Representatives)





Branches





District and Regional Offices





National Office


(http//www.bized.ac.uk/compfact/tuc/tucuni.htm)


.0 Formulation of Policies and Procedures


Trade unions are controlled on the whole by the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC) who is responsible for drawing up related policies, and publishing procedures on a regular basis, for union members to follow, in the case of any work related disputes. Even though the CAC, (a specialist body with statutory powers, able to approach its legislative responsibilities in a variety of ways, including legally binding decisions where necessary), has the final word over trade union decisions, if prompted, it does not provide legal advice/assistance, which is the job of the unions themselves. Laws and regulations regarding recognition agreements are developed and passed through the government. This is the reason why trade unions hope to achieve a voice within a governing body, so that they are able to play a major part with concerning regulations.


.1 Functions of the Central Arbitration Committee


The main function of the CAC is to deliver judgment on submissions relating to the legal recognition and de-recognition of trade unions for collective bargaining purposes, where these cannot be decided willingly. It deals currently with three main areas of dispute, which are


1. Statutory applications for recognition and de-recognition of trade unions;


. Statutory applications for disclosure of information for collective bargaining;


. Disputes over the constitution of European Works Councils.


(Adapted from the CAC Annual Report 00/0, p.1)


. Objectives of the CAC


The CAC’s functions are based on achieving four main objectives. According to the CAC Annual Report of 00/0, published on 17th June 00, the Committee was assessed and awarded accreditation for best performance measures and achieved targets in January 00, based on its objectives, which are


1. To achieve outcomes which are practicable, lawful, impartial, and where possible voluntary.


. To provide a courteous and helpful service to all those who approach the CAC, by aiming to publish clear, accessible and up to date guidance and other information on their procedures and requirements.


. To provide an efficient service and to supply assistance and decisions as is consistent with good standards of accuracy and thoroughness, taking into account the wishes of the parties and the statutory timetables.


4. To develop staff so that they are fully equipped to do their work and contribute to the CAC’s aims.


(Taken from the CAC Annual Report 00/0, p.1)


4.0 Trade Union Membership Growth


While comprehensive membership grew throughout the period of 145-17, union membership saw a slight decline in most years until 167. However, in the 1 year period of 167-17, trade unions grew vastly due to a certain number of factors identified by Hawkins (181). Some of these growth factors include


• Rate of changes in prices and wages, or inflation.


• Unemployment and the threat of unemployment.


• Employer recognition of trade unions.


• Structural size of an establishment.


• Growth of employment within the public sector, particularly in areas such as health, education and local authority.


• Legal obligations to recognise trade unions.


• Disinclination of women to join trade unions began to vanish as more women started to realise the importance of their rights.


All of the factors mentioned, identified by Hawkins (181), exercise, in one way or another, some kind of positive influence on trade union membership. For example, the structural size of an establishment would mean that large numbers of employees are likely to be treated as members of a group, rather than individuals. Hence, enhancing the reason for more employees to join the union and let the union representatives do what they do best � negotiate for the individual.


4.1 The Nature of Trade Union Membership Decline


Waddington and Whitson (15) have found, from their research, a widespread summary of the nature and dimensions of membership decline. Based on this research, below are listed some of the main elements of decline, adapted by Rose (001)


• Male and female unionisation.


• Manual and white collar unionisation.


• Unionisation by sector.


• Unionisation by industry.


Even though trade union membership has seen large quantities of fluctuation during the 180’s and 10’s, a lot of the membership gains accomplished during the 170’s had been eliminated by 187. According to Rose (001), this is the longest period of decline ever to be continuously recorded since 17. The above factors contribute towards decline, as for example, take unionisation by sector, where unemployment grew immensely amongst manual workers (agriculture, forestry and fishing sectors), employment rose dramatically amid non-manual workers. Naturally, the fall in the manual sector meant a decline in union membership and the sudden rise of non-manual labour showed a slow response to union member subscriptions. This also may be due to de-recognition of trade unions as well the rejection to trade unions, of some applications submitted to the CAC for a recognition agreement.


5.0 Managing with Trade Unions


Realistically, managements and trade unions learn to live together, often on a give and take basis, with the belief that neither of them would advance from an atmosphere of resentment or by creating regular conflict. It should be assumed in this situation that communal benefits would come from behaving in accordance with the spirit and as well as the letter of agreed joint regulatory procedures. However, both parties should adopt a realistic pluralist position, recognising the certainty of different view points and opinions, even disputes, but considering it best to resolve issues on a personal basis rather than consult for industrial action.


Even though today, both organisations may be able to make an effort to get on with one another, management still considers giving industrial relations a lower priority. However, management may feel that it is easier to continue to operate within a union as they provide a useful, well-established channel for communication and for the handling of grievance, discipline and safety issues.


5.1 Managing without Trade Unions


The following points adapted by Armstrong (001, p.774), show characteristics of union-free organisations


• Strikes were almost unheard of.


• Labour turnover was high but absenteeism was no worse.


• Pay levels were generally set independently by management.


• In general, no alternative methods of employee representation existed as an option for trade union representatives.


• Employees in the non-union sector are twice as likely to be dismissed as those in unionised firms.


All the above factors indicate greater support to the management and the organisation. However, there are significant differences that can be identified between unionised and non-unionised workplaces. The downside of being employed in a non-unionised workplace is that for the employees are unable to negotiate with the same power as a union member. Thus, there will be little bargaining activity, and therefore, management will have total control over pay related issues as well as hours of work and holidays.


6.0 Legal Requirements (Practical Implications)


Trade unions have the statutory right to be recognised by a reluctant employer, based on the Employment Relations Act 1 (ERA’), introduced by the Labour government. The legislation is designed so that employers may willingly accept the integration of a union into their organisation, providing there is a joint agreement on the terms of collective bargaining, between management and trade unions. However, where an employer refuses recognition, the union must comply with given conditions of the law in order to gain access. The trade union is required to submit an appeal to the CAC with supporting evidence of a signed ballot, (a minimum of 10%), by employees from that organisation, stating membership with the union. Based on the legislative conditions, if the CAC agree to recognition, then the employer is legally bound to communicate with the TU, and negotiate at least, matters concerned with pay, hours of work and holidays. In other circumstances, the CAC is not indebted to pass recognition unless a secret ballot is signed by employees with a minimum of 40% of signatures. Nevertheless, the Employment Relations Act 1, does not apply to any organisation where there are under 1 employees and so, the employer maintains full control over the organisation.


6.1 Trade Union Recognition


Once the trade union has gained recognition, it will want to get involved within the organisation absolutely as much as it can. Unions will want, in some respects, control over all areas of the organisation and will want to change policies and procedures also. They will get concerned with areas such as


• Pay


• Discipline and grievance


• Recruitment selection


• Training and development


Trade unions will also go to the extent of getting other agreements to work with them and make sure they get involved too, for example, health and safety agreements.


7.0 Conclusion


Since the fluctuation period of trade unions, one can conclude that it is best for trade unions to not deliberately push for recognition within smaller organisations even though, those organisations might exceed the number of employees that legally bind the organisation to be recognised by the trade union recognition agreement. However, employers should also acknowledge the existence of trade unions and therefore, voluntarily accept recognition on a minimum of issues such as, matters of pay, hours of work and holidays. It is in the interest of every employee to remain satisfied, within reason, in their work environment. Employers also want the well-being of the company and ability to prosper on grounds of solidarity, whilst maintaining a good working relationship with its employees.


Trade unions should concentrate far more strictly on larger organisations and deal with as much as possible within those organisations, by means of voluntary recognition, or by means of legal recognition. It is the larger organisations that go over-looked by the management of that organisation and employees go treated unfairly. However, this does not mean that trade unions should not play a part within small organisations � they should. Nevertheless, even though legislation for union recognition exists, within these small organisations, trade unions should not inflict deliberate trouble upon these companies, where there is no evidence of unfair behaviour between the workforce and management.


As we have seen from this report, trade unions and related organisations like the CAC and the TUC, all work around each other to provide help and support for people who, at work, are not knowledgeable enough to deal with issues that arise in the everyday work place. Everyone has their own way around issues and there are many similarities between these people and the organisations that integrate to get voices heard and personal rights or issues resolved. However, trade union recognition is a problem which must be resolved, for the simple interests of employees, employers and their organisations. The whole purpose of trade unions is to improve and achieve full lengths of communication between employers and their workforce. The matter is simple, if employees are happy then employers will also remain pleased and organisations will run far better, (so long as employees rights, within reason, are met) and the majority will not complain. Similarly, if employees are not satisfied with working conditions then issues will evolve, and where nothing is done, disputes will arise.


8.0 References


• Armstrong, M. (001) A Handbook of Human Resource Management Practice. 8th Ed. London, Kogan


• Blackburn, R. M. (167) Union Character and Social Class. London, Batsford


• Brown, W. et al. (001) the Limits of Statutory Trade Union Recognition. ESRC Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge. Working Paper No.1


• Central Arbitration Committee Annual Report 00/0


• Corbridge, M. and Pilbeam, S. (00) People Resourcing HRM in Practice. nd Ed. London, Prentice


• Hall, L. and Torrington, D. (11) Employee Resourcing. London, Wimbledon


• Hawkins, K. (181) Trade Unions. London, Hutchinson


• Rose, E. (001) Employment Relations. London, Prentice Hall


• Waddington, J. and Whitson, C. (15) Trade Unions Growth Structure and Policy


• Webb, S. and Webb, B. (10) the History of Trade Unionism 1866-10. London, Longman


• http//agency.osha.eu.int/publications/magazine/1/en/index_15.htm


• http//www.bized.ac.uk/compfact/tuc/tucindex.htm


• http//www.bized.ac.uk/company/tuc/tucuni.htm


• http//www.bized.ac.uk/learn/learn.htm


• http//www.cac.gov.uk/tradeunionrecognition.html


• http//www.eto.org.uk/resource/index.htm


• http//www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/Parliament/5/index.html


• http//www.tuc.org.uk/law/index.cfm?mins=1


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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Code of "The Lost Generation"

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Ernest Hemingway believed the generation that came of age after World War I was a lost generation. “The Lost Generation” was simply defined as a bunch of disillusioned young men and women that survived World War I, who lost their morals, and direction of their lives. Like the characters in the novel they spent their time drinking, and traveling as a way to escape reality. Most of these young men and women had dreams, but after the war, they came back physically, and emotionally wounded. They spent most of their time in cafes; due to this they became bitter, and lost hope in life. In the novel The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway, “The Lost Generation” is a theme that appears throughout. The code that is seemingly apparent for Jake Barnes and Frances Clyne in Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises is irresponsibility.


Jake Barnes being the narrator and protagonist of the novel is one of the characters that represents the worst of “The Lost Generation.” Due to the war Jake came back impotent, in other words he also lost his manhood. After going out with Georgette one night Jake states that, “She cuddled against me and I put my arm around her. She looks up to be kissed. She touched me with one hand and I put her hand away” (Hemingway 15). Instead of confronting his problem with Georgette, Jake is going around the truth, and just telling her that he is sick. This shows how irresponsible he is, and how he does not accept his condition. In “The Waste Land” by T.S. Eliot, there is a line that states, “Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain” (The Waste Land 1781). The “lilacs out of the dead land” represent Jake because he leads an emotionless life. This quote also links to the story because he has a desire to be intimate with women, but he has that constant reminder of the war. However, in order to forget his concerns Jake drinks, and he says, “I was a little drunk. Not drunk in any positive sense but just enough to be careless” (Hemingway 1). To get rid of all his feelings Jake drinks, he thinks that drinking is going to make him forget his issues. By drinking Jake runs from his problems, and hides from the truth because he cannot handle it. On the other hand, when Frances approaches Jake to talk about Robert, Jake says, “I do not know how people can say such terrible things to Robert Cohn. There are people to whom you could not say… Here it was, all going on right before me, and I did not even feel an impulse to try and stop it” (Hemingway 4). Jake is selfish and irresponsible because he is unwilling to help his own friend. Jake thinks that he has enough with his problems, so he blocks out other people’s problems, and keeps going on with his life.


Frances is portrayed as a careless character that suggests irresponsibility. She wants to marry Cohn for reasons other than love. This is apparent when she says, “Oh, he told every one that we were going to be married, and I told my mother and every one, and now he doesn’t want to do it” (Hemingway 46). Frances feels that she needs to get married because she is getting old, and wasted the best years of her life next to someone that never loved her. She also wants to get married soon because the older she gets, the harder it will be for her to find another man that is willing to marry her. Later in the novel, Frances makes a foolish remark, she says, “I never liked children much, but I don’t want to think I’ll never have them. I always thought I’d have them and then like them” (Hemingway 47). Frances displays a character that is irresponsible and immature, and that is not capable of raising a child. For Frances raising a child is like raising a doll, that can be left behind and forgotten about after a while. In a quote from Maxwell, he states that, “The lightest conversation in The Sun Also Rises seems quite inevitably to turn the screw upon the wounded spirits of this group” (Maxwell 5). Like all the characters in the novel, Frances suffers from excessive drinking, and it is not capable of controlling herself. This is a theme that appears throughout the novel, that portrays how irresponsible she is, and how she believes that her problems will be forgotten in the Parisian cafes.


Irresponsibility marks the life of all the characters. In a reading by Spilka he states that, “if one generation is lost and another comes, the earth abides forever” (Spilka ). The characters in The Sun Also Rises led a lifestyle that was set for them already. Everyone became so bitter that they gave up on life, and pretty much did anything they wanted. They believed that by drinking everything was going to be fine. But then realized that after the hangover everything was still the same. They were all nomads searching for answers in the Parisian cafes.


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Friday, August 17, 2012

PED for Lightbulbs

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Introduction


This report has been produced to analyse the possible implications of increasing the price of our 100Watt light bulbs by 0%. Presently the cost of a light bulb is £0.80. This report will aim to fully assess and evaluate the price elasticity of demand of the product, which will enable an informed decision to be made on whether a price increase will be financially viable for the company.


Concept of price elasticity


The concept of price elasticity of demand (PED) is to measure the responsiveness of the quantity demanded to a price increase or decrease, with all other factors remaining the same. This is achieved by comparing the percentage change of the price of a product, in relation to the percentage change in demand for that product, and is calculated as follows,


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PED (price elasticity of demand) = Percentage change in the quantity demanded


Percentage change in the price


The determining factor in the above calculation depends on whether the PED is above or below 1. The price elasticity of demand can be split into three different categories once the above calculation is completed


Price Elastic


If a product is deemed to be price elastic, the calculation will reveal that the PED is greater than 1, this shows that the percentage change in quantity demanded is greater than the % change in price.


Price Inelastic


If the price is inelastic, the calculation will reveal that the PED is less than 1 indicating that the percentage change in price is greater than the percentage change in quantity demanded.


Unitary elasticity


If the price is classed as unitary elasticity, the PED calculation will work out at exactly 1. This shows that percentage change in price is equal to the percentage change in quantity demanded.


The relevance of PED to pricing decisions


The price elasticity of demand is a very helpful tool in deciding how to price a product, as there is a direct link between price elasticity and revenue. If a product is price elastic it is susceptible to price change, this means that increases in price will have a negative effect on total revenue. Conversely, if the price is inelastic this indicates that there is a positive relationship between elasticity and revenue and the product is not particularly susceptible to price change, therefore if there is an increase in price there will be an increase in revenue. It can be seen that all firms aim to achieve an inelastic price of demand, because they can then increase their prices knowing that the customers will still be willing to purchase the product. This ties in with competitive advantage, meaning that once you are a market leader you can control prices to a certain degree.


Factors of demand for 100watt light bulbs





It is important to look at what factors may affect the demand for 100Watt light bulbs. Looking firstly at price


Price of our light bulbs


Last year a survey was carried out to assess the sensitivity of sales to price for our 100watt light bulbs, the results were as follows,


Price Sales (Million) Revenue (Million) % Change in price % Change in Sales


£0.80 5800 4640 5% 1.0%


£1.00 4000 4000


If we then apply these results to the aforementioned equation for PED,


PED = % Change in QD 1.0 = 1.4


%Change in P 5


It can be clearly see from the calculation above that the demand for 100Watt light bulbs is elastic, and therefore sensitive to price change.


The price of other companies light bulbs


Another factor in determining the demand for light bulbs may be the price of our competitor’s products. We have already seen from the calculation above that the price is elastic. If another company making light bulbs offers consumers a lower price, or a better deal i.e. a two for one offer, we may find that demand for our product falls. Consumers may be unwilling to pay more for an identical product they can find cheaper elsewhere.


Availability of substitute products


Availability of substitute products may also play a part in the demand for 100watt light bulbs. It can be seen that over recent years the availability of energy saving light bulbs such as Incandescent and Halogen Light Bulbs are on the increase. These bulbs can last many times longer than a standard light bulb. Prices of these substitutes are currently high in comparison to standard 100W bulbs but may fall as the country and government strives to become more energy efficient, this may have a direct effect on the demand for our product. Conover (February 5, 00)


Recommendations


The above graph has been plotted to assess whether there should be a rise of 0% to the price of the companies light bulbs. It can be clearly seen from the graph that an increase of 0% would add and extra £0.16 of revenue per bulb sold, however the price rise also causes a loss in demand from 5800Million to 4400Million. The table below shows the predicted subsequent effect on revenue,





Price Sales (Million) Revenue (Million) % Change in price


£0.80 5800 4640 0%


£0.6 4400 44


Taking into consideration the earlier finding that the price of light bulbs is elastic, meaning any price rise will reduce demand, and the findings of the graph which indicates that a 0% increase in price would result in a predicted £416,000 of lost revenue, it is recommended that the price should not be raised.


Bibliography


Conover, C February 5, 00 ‘Light bulbs, Floodlights and Spotlights which bulbs to use? An extremely brief and incomplete tutorial and review’, Available from


http//www.pitt.edu/~kconover/light_bulb_tutorial.htm (Accessed 1/11/00)


Worthington, I. & Britton, C, 00. The business environment. 4th Ed. Harlow Pearson Education.


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Thursday, August 16, 2012

A raison in the sun

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Coup number one is the scene when Ruth finds out that she is pregnant and wishes to tell Walter. Ruth wants to tell Walter about the new baby and their plans weather or not to keep the baby but he has his own little problems and is too mind bothered to listen. So Mamma sits him down and makes him listen. In this scene, it shows how Walter really doesn’t know his wife as well as he thought he did and as well as the communication gap between Walter and Ruth. The fact that he thought that Ruth would never think of getting an abortion shows the lack of communication between them. To his surprise, Ruth would throw away all her morals for the well-being of her family. This scene really touched me because I’m against abortion yet I understood why Ruth was considering having the unborn child killed. The questions of supporting this child surely crossed her mind. If they can barely support them selves but most importantly their son Travis, why have another child?


Coup number two is the scene where Walter comes home drunk and tries to tell Momma about his plans on the liquor store and then Momma harshly turns him down and rejects his ideas. As you read this scene, you have an understanding of both Momma and of Walter. Momma doesn’t wish to give Walter any of the money because she feels that his ideas are unrealistic and not worth the money. Although she has no reason to entrust such a large amount of money to Walter, you feel a pity for Walter. I felt bad for Walter because he was being treated like “the boy who cried wolf”. His attempts to tell Momma about his ideas have not only failed but were not even listened to. In his mind, he had the most brilliant idea in the world yet he had nobody with whom he may share his ideas with. Momma rejected his ideas without even listening or any consideration what so ever. If that were any other human being, the reactions would be quite similar to Walter’s. The fact that a thirty-five years old man who wishes to be head of the family and has dreams, cannot communicate with his family and is being ignored like a child.


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Coup number three is the scene where Mr. Linder shows up at their house to inform them that their community does not encourage the moving of black people into their white community. Ruth, Beneatha and Walter were shocked and outraged. Who was this man, to come into their house and try to persuade them in to not moving into their community because they are black? Because racism has diminished in our time, the impacts of Mr. Linder’s words are more intense. This is perhaps one of the reasons why I felt anger out of Mr. Linder’s arrival. What got me even more angry while reading this scene was the effort that the community when through in order to have the Youger family removed from their so called peaceful community instead of settling their racial differences. Although Mr. Linder’s intentions were negative, you have to understand how he must have felt. I sort of pitied Mr. Linder because I know for a fact that if I were in his position I would be experiencing the same emotions. The nervousness and fear as he tried to politely state the community’s predicament.


Coup number four is the scene where Willy ran away with all of Momma’s money. While reading this scene I felt anger and I also felt bad for Walter. For the first time in his life, Momma entrusted him with a large amount of money and also entrusted with the responsibility to lead their family. Walter felt proud and held his head up high. Those moments quickly ended when he gambled all that money on a single thought. Although I felt bad that Walter had all that money stolen, I was angrier because of his stupidity. He did not only lose his half of the money, but Beneatha’s tuition money as well. Although Momma told him to put away three thousand dollars out of the sixty five hundred for beneatha’s tuition, him being a risk taker, ignored Momma’s words and went on with his plans. What really got me sad while reading this scene is the trust that Momma had in her son. She really trusted him and Walter proved her wrong. I personally believe that one of the worst things to lose is a person’s trust. I could only imagine the anger and disappointment Momma felt towards Walter when she found out about him losing all that money.





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Friday, August 10, 2012

Why art is important

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Art is important because it is creation. It is a piece of the artist, an emotion which the artist found was special enough to share with everyone around him.


Art is important because it is a way to share humanity, and in turn allow that to grow. Art is important because it is not sport, or maths or english. But because it is art, it is who we are and who we will be. It is humanity.


We find that art through the ages has become a major scource of historical information. It brings back the past, and is not the words on a page, but the paint or pen strokes on canvas. It is what you can see, hear and feel. It is an unbelievable experience to create something which brings joy and happiness to others.


Can this feeling really be passed on by any other way apart from art. No it cannot. Art is something inexplainably crafted to bring pleasure to the vision of those who can see. Or a soothing noise to those who can hear. Art is what we want to be and what we do not want to be. Art is how we feel and how we wish not to feel.


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Art is us and them, them and us. The revolution the anarchy, the society we have lived in and the society we will live in. Art is important becase it shares the ideas that cannot be shared any other way.


Art can come in many forms. In any shape or any size. Art, and the beauty of that art is in the eye of all those who see it. Art is what any one person on any chosen day believes is art. And that is why it is important.


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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Focused Interpretation- “Araby”

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The story “Araby” taken from James Joyce’s Dubliners is essentially about a young boy who is youthfully blind to the environment around him in love and life, and then roused by adulthood in his atmospheric surroundings. Everything about this story is sightless the streets, the houses, the people, and especially our young main character. The atmosphere surrounding him provides the young boy with un-truths and false dreams.


The short story begins with, “ North Richmond Street, being blind”(15), blind is used here to mean dead end; the street in which the main character finds himself living on is described here as dead, unsighted. The houses are then described with animated qualities “Detached from its neighbors…conscious of decent lives within them…gazed at one another with brown imperturbable faces” (15). North Richmond Street is described allegorically and allows one a first glimpse into the world of the boy. Those who are aware, un-dead to the world, would feel dispirited and threatened by North Richmond Street, however the boys aunt and uncle do not feel in jeopardy, but are inconspicuously complacent.


The environment of blindness expands from a common view of the street and its residents to the boys own personal relationships. The uncles failure to arrive home in time for the boy to go to the bazaar while it is still open is due to a lack of understanding or empathy on the uncle’ s part. The uncle has most likely been out drinking at a nearby pub, as Joyce reflects his characters doing throughout his stories, inattentive and unmoved by the boys restlessness and angst. The boy waits long into the evening in the imperturbable house. The house, like the aunt and uncle, is a reflection of people that are good, but constricted in their positions and in their principles. The consequence of such a setting is an atmosphere secluded and unsighted.


In this environment, the boy comes upon his first love, and begins to have sweet idealistic dreams. The boy sees not reality amid the curses of labourers(16), jostled by drunken men and bargaining women(16), as he carries his aunts parcels while she shops in the market place, he imagines that he carries not parcels, but a chalice through a throng of foes(16). The noises converged in a single sensation of life(16) and in a coming together of romantic and sacred symbols he creates for himself a spellbindingly perfect young woman. The setting in this scene depicts the harsh reality of life which the boy chooses to blindly ignore.


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The boy finally wakes to the world around him. The cheap glitziness of the bazaar, which in the boy’s mind had been an Oriental enchantment, rips his blindness away from him and leaves him facing reality, actual and cruel. The bazaar is now dark and bare; it flourishes by the same means as the market place (two men were counting money on a salver(1)); love is epitomized as a vacant, transient flirtation.


Araby is a story of first love; even more, it is a representation of a world that resist sight and reality. Although so much of the story points to “detached” “imperturbable” imagery, the boy saw more than this in his surroundings, in his love. Thus setting in this story becomes the true subject, personifying an atmosphere of paralysis for which the young boy’s dreams are no match. Realizing this, the boy takes his first step into adulthood, just as many of Joyce’s character’s find themselves doing in Dubliners. “The Sisters”, “An Encounter”, and “Araby” all tell stories of childhood, and at the end the child in some way sees the atmosphere around him through new eyes, less blinded by dreams and fantasies of childhood, stepping forward toward life as an adult. In “The Sisters”, death is an awakening experience for the young boy, as in “The Encounter” an environment filled with insecurity and fear opens his young eyes. Each of these stories shares the common bond of youthful blindness and an atmosphere that awakens, for the first time, truthful sight.





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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

SWOT of Thomas Cook

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SWOT analysis of Thomas Cook AG


Thomas Cook is one of the leading travel groups in the world. It is the third largest integrated tourism group in the world, behind domestic rival TUI and the UK group MyTravel (formerly Airtours). ‘Thomas Cook serves some 14 million customers, owns 0 tour operators and around ,600 travel agencies selling the groups products worldwide, has 7,000 beds under control, a fleet of 85 aircraft and a workforce numbering some 8,000.’ (Travel and Tourism Company profile- Thomas Cook, 00) It ‘is owned by Deutsche Lufthansa AG (50%) and KarstadtQuelle AG (50%)’ (Thomas Cook Sharholder Structure), which created C &N Touristic in 18. Its customers spread over Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Austria, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Egypt, India and Canada. The pre-tax consolidated income of Thomas Cook on the third quarter of 00 is €7,50,000.


Strengths


Customers can create their own holiday on internet. Thomas Cook AG allows customers to create their own holidays by bundling flights and hotels on their web site- Thomascook.com (BRIEFS, Marketing (UK), 00). It is more flexible and desirable that customers can choose the hotel and flights on their preference rather than paying for fixed package holidays. Also, customers will be attracted as it is more convenient for them to have their booking online.


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Thomas Cook has its own airlines and three charter airlines. Those charter airlines are, the SunExpress, providing flights with the Turkish Airline to Turkey; the Thomas Cook Airline UK, the second-biggest charter carrier in Britain and the Thomas Cook powered by Condor, which offers an extensive network. The Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium is the own airline of Thomas Cook. ‘These airlines serve more than sixty international destinations in Europe, Asia, Africa and America and operating an extensive route network with flights from twenty-one airports in Germany, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands and Switzerland.’ (A Short Portrait, 00) This enables Thomas Cook to provide cheaper deals, for example, hotels and flights, which help to attract customers that have low budget for their holidays. As it has its own airlines, to and from different countries, this helps it to adopt customers from different countries whereas other leisure companies may not able to have these competitive advantages.


It implemented functional software, the MicroStrategy platform to help staff to do their job better (See appendix 1). The MicroStrategy platform consists of a number of business intelligence applications, including the management information reporting system, revenue management analysis, sales analysis and customer call center applications. It also helps to reduce the number of workforce for running the business, i.e. reduce the costs of running the business.


Weaknesses


It is concentrate on one industry and not sufficiently diversifies. As Thomas Cook AG is formed by many vertical mergers (A Short Portrait, 00); it remains in the same industry rather than expanding to another one. This causes lack of diversify products and services, and, cannot provide wide range of products and services to adopt more consumers.


Most of its airlines are charter airlines. Charter Airlines charged for lower prices. However, it leads to lower quality of services and products. For example, free meals and drinks are not provided on board. Also, the schedule of flights are limited, customers might have fewer choice for the time to board.


Opportunities


It is possible for Thomas Cook AG to expand their charter airline companies and travel to more countries, which allows them to attract more customers from more countries in the world (See appendix ). Larger Planes can be introduced to carry more passengers in one time; the company can grow without adding plenty of flights this can help to reduce the costs of the company.


Threats


Macroeconomic environment deeply affect the price of their products and the turnover of the company, i.e. weak economy (see appendix ), terror attacks, wars and diseases. For example, as a result of Iraq war, SARS outbreak in Asia and hot summer, holidaymakers deferring or canceling their travel plans (Thomas Cook in Upbeat Mood, 17/06/00) which leads to the holiday price fell by 5.4% while turnover dropped 11.6% as a result of hot summer, Iraq war and SARS (Manny, 00). Due to the undesirable situation of the macro-economies, the pre-tax consolidate income of Thomas Cook is -€54,601,000 on the year ended 0 July, 00(See appendix 4).


Government policy will affect the growth and development of the company. Transport in United Kingdom is zero rated in VAT. However, European Commission plans to impose VAT on package holidays (See appendix 5) which would cost travel agencies in United Kingdom five billion pounds and five thousands of employees could be made redundant.


Competitors might also launch its own airlines or co-operate with other airline companies and provide cheap tickets in order to gain market share. For example, Air 000 Ltd and First Choice Holidays.


Bibliography


Post A. (14), Anatomy of a merger the causes and effects of mergers and acquisitions, Prentice Hall, London


Company History, 00, MyTravel Group Plc, viewed on 0/11/00


http//www.mytravelgroup.com/History.htm


Group Organisation, 00, Thomas Cook, viewed on 0/11/00


http//www.thomascook.info/tck/de/en/abu/0,77,0-0-84064,00.html


MyTravel shares dive, 06/11/00, BBC News, viewed on 0/11/00


http//news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/4871.stm


MyTravel sells US business, /10/00, BBC News, viewed on 0/11/00


http//news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/085.stm


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Sunday, August 5, 2012

Case study of barings bank

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Introduction


In this case report, firstly, the arbitrage opportunities in the authorized trading which was supposed to exploited by Leeson and Lesson’s trading strategy will be focused on. Secondly, our interest is to find out the strategy on how to lose more money than Leeson did. As the more we know how to lose money, the more effective control for the investment we realize. In addition, the loose internal management in Barings Bank was also a critical reason for the collapse of Barings and lessons from that is worth discussing and referring by the present financial institute.


1. Arbitrage opportunities in trades


1.1 Arbitrage opportunities between Osaka and Singapore


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Nick Leeson was appointed to trade derivatives on the Singapore International Monetary Exchange (SIMEX) and the Osaka exchange, and hence was making a low-risk profit, known as “switching”. Obviously, arbitrage opportunities existed in trading Nikkei future contracts in the two markets, when there is different price and it is easy to make profit by purchasing future contract in the market with higher price and selling it in the market with relatively lower price. For example, as shown in the Table 1, on 1st,November 14, the price difference between SIMEX and OSX is 55, meaning profit can be realized by longing the Dec 4 future contracts in OSX and shorting it in SIMEX.


1. Arbitrage opportunities in future contract between Nikkei 5 spot and Nikkei 5 future


Another arbitrage opportunity appeared in the Nikkei 5 futures and Nikkei 5 spot. Firstly, assume that there is no transaction costs, the dividends are received on a continuous basis, and that the nearest Euro-yen futures rate approximates the Japanese short-term free-risk rate and the FFP of Nikkei futures contract was calculated by (results are stated in the table 1)


FFP=Stexp[(r-D)�]


Assume that there is no transaction costs, the dividends are received on a continuous basis, and that the nearest Euro-yen futures rate approximates the Japanese short-term free-risk rate.


Where St= spot price of Nikkei 5 index


r= riskless interest rate,


D= dividend, a continuous 1% dividend yield on the Nikkei 5


�=fraction of a year from now to maturity. Here suppose the third Friday of exercise months as the expiration dates, which are 16 Dec 4, 17 Mar 5, 16Jun 5.


On one hand, when the actual futures price is higher than the fair value of the futures, we can gain by purchasing the spot assets and shorting the future contract. On the other hand, and when the actual futures price is lower than the fair value of the futures, the trading will be profitable by taking a long position in future contract and selling the spot assets.


1. Arbitrage opportunities between implied interest and riskless interest


In addition, the arbitrage opportunities can also be found by comparing the implied interest rate and the riskless rate.


IRt=LN(Ft/St)/�+q


Where Ft= actual futures price;


S= price of the spot assets;


q= dividend rate 1% ;


�= (T-t )/65 = fraction of a year from time t to T.


As stated in the material, if IRr, borrowing at the riskless rate and lending at the implied interest rate of the futures contract; if IRr, buying the futures contract and selling short the stocks in the index. For example, the IR of Nikkei 5 future contract in OSX on 7th, October 14 is .4%, which is more than the riskless rate, .5. The profit can be realized by borrowing the money at the riskless rate and buying the future contract at the implied interest rate.


From the discussion above, arbitrage opportunities are significant, but sometimes that is not the case. The trades are not free of charge, there are some transaction costs the traders have to pay, as well as tax. If the profits from above arbitrage opportunities cannot cover these trading costs, the arbitrageur will not proceed the trading. Besides, the data shown in the table is only the closing prices of the previous date. They can not reflect the fluctuation of prices dynamically during that day.


. Evaluation of Leeson’s trading strategy


Leeson’s strategy involved both buying stock-index futures and selling options on the Nikkei-55 index. Following the Kobe earthquake, the price of Nikkei futures contracts fell sharply. As Leeson thought the price was undervalued and was betting that Japanese stock price and interest would rise rapidly, he kept on expanding the long position on the future contracts. The relationship between future price movements of previous days and position adjustment was analyzed by using the historical volatility. As we know, historical volatility indicates the probability that the underlying security will move a particular distance measured in price on a given period. As shown in Graph 1, after the Kobe earthquake, the volatility tended to be fluctuant and the huge loss resulted became inevitable and catastrophic. Instead of cutting losses by closing out positions as the market declined after the Kobe earthquake, Leeson doubled up on his position. This means that the position adjustment by Leeson was not based on historical market data of previous days and he was just a gambler and tried to hold up the market by expanding volume.


As to option, Lesson executed a highly risky trading strategy known as “straddle”, making profit when markets are stable and resulting in huge loss when there is any sudden move in either direction. However, Leeson did not hedge his portfolio and was in hope that the market remained steady in order to gain the premium smoothly. If Leeson tried to use hedging strategy, e.g. Delta hedging to rebalance his portfolio and adjust his positions dynamically, the history of Barings would be changed.


. How to lose more money


.1 Losing trading rule


The reverse of Double-up trading rule


If [CP (T)-CP (T-1)]O, Then 0.5P (T-1), else P(T-1)


Refer to the material, the reverse of Double-up trading rules based on the previous prices to adjust position, can be used to lose money in Nikkei 5 futures more than Leeson over January and February 15. When the closing price of the future exceeds the last day closing prices, reduces the position to 1/ as much as currently held; when the closing price of the future is less than the previous day closing prices, doubles the position. That is, if you are holding 10000 positions of Mar 15 contracts in the Nikkei 5 on 16th, January 15 and the closing price is 145 which is 10 more than the closing price on 17th, January, cut down the position to 5000 as illustrated in Table .


. Losing strategy - Strip


Here taking the Jun 5 option on the Nikkei 5 future contracts as an example to illustrate the losing strategy over the first two months of 15.


Firstly, calculation of the fair prices of listed options is the foundation stone. By HULL’s software and the data from table and 4 on handout, the current levels of implied volatility of the two months’ historical volatility as shown graphically below Graph 1, from 10th October 14 to 1th September 14. Clearly, the implied volatility, 0.06, of OSX (JUN) option had a significant difference to the mean of historical volatility, 0.1140, of the OSX (JUN), which was consistent with the simple rule that when the relative implied volatility is lower than the average, the option is effectively under priced. Selling the undervalued options provides a high potential of losing in the following two months.


Secondly, the loss also rests with the price movement of the underlying asset, i.e. OSX (JUN). A normal trader makes a personal expectation, with empirical and academic analysis basis on the historical market performance and technical indicators, that the OSX futures market would be a bearish one. Basically, if betting that there would be a profitable underlying asset price movement, the trader considers a decrease in the asset price is more likely than an increase so that he probably to make a profit by purchasing a strip. For a loser with the similar expectation, inversely, he writes a strip, i.e. selling two put options and selling one call option of the SIMEX (JUN) option, which is under the assumption that the position in the futures contract was closed out immediately at the time the option was exercised. The result of the deal goes as follow. Profit from OSX (Jun5) Exercise Price=1000, Call Price=1074.55 Put Price=154.55


Range of Stock Price Profit from call Profit from Put Total Profit


St=1000 1074.55 St-760. St-6616.5


St=1000 08.65-St 0.1 06.75-St


Using the formula, when the price of OSX-NIKKEI futures (MAR) moved to 17000 on the 8th February 15, the negative profit of -616.5 (17000-6616.5) is experienced. So the loser suffers a 616.5 loss in the period by writing an OSX (JUN). (Refer to Guangzhen Sheng’s)


. Fooling activities


a. Fool the supervisors within the bank and the auditors


Try to use more complicated financial instruments with compound trading strategies, in order to let as few as persons as you can, including the managers to understand what you are really doing. Make sure you are the only expert of the areas in your company or team and make up you authority among your colleagues or team members. Just show them the P&L and other reports in which you can adjust all the numbers to what they should be.


Try to build up a tight relationship and friendship with all the key persons in each link, which will influence the implementation of your trading strategy. The accounting or financial report department is necessary to help you manipulate the financial statements. So either you yourself be a man in these departments or you should have the leadership of them.


b. Area Differences


Local regulators do not always have the same criteria as the parent authority, and they can not understand or agree with every aspect of the methodology of regulation. So compare with all the details and discover that exits in the host authority but not in the parent authority, vice versa. Then you can make explanations easily to both sides, especial to the parent side that your unconventional or abnormal operations were due to the host authority. (Refer to Shengzhang Jiang’s)


4. The lessons from Barings case


It was Leeson, once recognized as a “star trader”, furtively created a “error” account 88888 into which he put his lost of unauthorized trading transactions between SIMEX and OSE. Consequently, the account was run up to lose at $1. billion dollars and that eventually broke down the Barings as it could not sustain huge amount of margin calls. But Barings could not totally escape blame. Since the senior management allowed Leeson to control both the investment department and settlement department in BFS, as a result, he was able to conceal his unauthorized trading activities for over a year without detection. Even when the price of Nikkei futures contracts kept falling sharply, the bank placed too much reliance on Leeson and still wired him $1 billion to continue his trading. If the Bank implements well-divided job allocation, and the entire employee take seriously of their responsibility and report to the senior management systematically and authentically. Simultaneously, a series of integrated supervision function should be adopted to audit and regulate the whole operations of the internal management. For example, the bank should set up an independent group of auditors to check the balance sheet issued by the accounting department regularly and also, the members of that group should be substituted after a certain period. Besides, financial derivatives constitute an important part of portfolio executed in banks, financial institutes and Security companies, it is necessary for the management to understand the operations of all the instrument. And also the risk-control measures should be set up for all the trading activities, for example, the limits of the open interest, the limits for the arbitrage activities, exposure rules and so on. Finally, the Bank should develop extensive investment portfolio to distract risk.


Conclusion


The main conclusion in British report is pointed to failure of management to understand and detect activities being conducted within the group


The collapse was brought about by the unauthorized trading activities within BFS-one overseas subsidiary within a large group but whose activities accumulated losses of around 80 million pounds and caused the ultimate parent company, Barings plc, to be placed in administration. The collapse of Barings is an illustration of how a viable and prosperous group can, in circumstances where controls are ineffective, be brought down by unauthorized activities within one of its subsidiary operations.


From the case of Barings, we can realize how important for the parent company to understand and control the operations of its subsidiary company.





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Advantages & Disadvantages of Sales Promotions

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The biggest advantage of sales promotions are that, if they are done correctly, they can


stimulate and increase consumer purchases and develop or improve retailer or


middlemen efforts to stock and sell a product. A sales promotion can be coupons, gifts,


samples, in-store promotions, contests or sponsorship of special events (sporting events,


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fairs, etc.) In markets where consumers may be hard to reach through regular


advertising channels, a sales promotion is necessary and very effective. Sales


promotions are generally seen as fun and can have long-lasting ifavorable mpressions on


consumers.


In addition, another advantage is that sales promotion activities may be narrowly


targeted to consumers and/or offered for only a short time before being dropped or


replaced with more permanent efforts. This flexible nature of sales promotions makes


them ideal for a marketing campaign tailored to fit local customs and circumstances. For


example, Philip Morris, British American Tobacco, & R.J. Reynolds competed in the


Taiwanese market by handing out free cigarettes, a practice not utilized in the U.S.


market. Both Philip Morris and R.J. Reynolds built market share by offering Korean


consumers free cigarette lighters and desk diaries with the firms logos in return for


cigarette purchases.


One of the disadvantages is that the success of a sales promotion may depend on local


adaptation. Since cultures have an impact on any type of advertising/promotion,


marketers must ensure that the type of sales promotion they have selected for a


particular country is not a prohibited activity. Since some local laws do not permit free


gifts, coupons, premiums or discounts, marketers must thoroughly research the countries


before undertaking sales promotions. Another disadvantage may be the cost of sales


promotions. The up-front costs may be high; however successful sales promotions can


reap rewards many times over in the long run. Companies just need to be able to make


the investment in the up-front costs.





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Thursday, August 2, 2012

UNO Internship Services

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UNO Internship Services


Target Market


In determining the target market for the internship program, we first segmented the market by dividing the 1,05 students enrolled at UNO to the 5, upperclassmen. We then segmented down further to the ,044 business students. Finally we narrowed the market down to our target market of juniors and seniors in pursuit of a marketing degree we could find an exact number, but we can guess between 00 to 00 students. The target market we are focusing on has varied demographics. According to the survey we distributed, however, we found that the majority of those interested in the program were seniors and 56. percent of those surveyed carried a GPA between .5 and .. Psychographically our survey showed that the target market was seeking real world experience as a benefit of the internship service.


Who is “the Provider”?


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Determining the provider of the marketing internship service at the University of Nebraska at Omaha proves difficult to pick just one provider. At first, a quick glance at the internship program might lead you to the conclusion that Dr. Holland, the faculty member in charge of the program, would be the provider. However, is Dr. Holland the only provider of service for the marketing internship program? A more in-depth look might lead to the conclusion that each business that employs a student of the marketing internship program would also be a provider of the service. Essentially, UNO is outsourcing the service of education to a third party, in this case each business with an intern.


The University obviously has to outsource this educational component in order to fulfill the main desire of most interns, the real world experience. It would be difficult for UNO to offer the real world experience to the student in the classroom. Therefore, a business is selected by the students enrolled in the internship program to satisfy this need for real world experience. This special situation means that provider gap 1 is actually two tiered.


In order to close provider gap 1, Dr. Holland and the university must have a good understanding of the students’ expectations for the internship program. On a second tier, the businesses that employ the marketing interns must have a sound knowledge of what Dr. Holland’s expectations for their firm are. Every one of the participants in the internship program must know their roles and what script to follow in order to act out their role.


The role of Dr. Holland is to provide the student with potential businesses where they can intern. She also needs to provide assistance to each business about what she expects them to provide the student. The role of each business should be in the words of Dr. Holland a “managerial coach.” This means to provide the student with opportunities to apply skills and to give them feedback and insights on how to perform better. The role of the student is to apply the skills from the classroom into the workplace and learn while they work.


Gap 1


We looked at the internship model based on the four factors that the book outlined that affect the width of gap 1. The best way to collect information for gap 1 was to use the survey that we used for the customer gap and to interview Dr. Holland, the provider of the service.


The first of the four factors that influence gap 1 is inadequate marketing research orientation. We found in our interview with Dr. Holland that there was barely any research that went into the internship program. Mostly, the businesses contact her seeking interns to work in their company. The only time research is required is when there is a problem with the internship experience. If problems arise with the internship, Dr. Holland undergoes a service recovery process.


The service recovery process that Dr. Holland undertakes is a three-step approach to solve the situation. First, she will communicate with the manager to determine if duties have been delegated to the intern. Secondly, if the current manager is failing to provide the proper guidance then she will look to see if there is another employee who will take on the responsibility of overseeing the intern. If those two measures fail, then the final step is to look for a completely different business for the intern to work at. However, this situation is very rare. This usually only occurs if there is a total breakdown in communication between the business, student and Dr. Holland.


From our research, there are only a few situations where there is a lack of upward communication between the student and the business manager. This usually occurs when the student is too timid to ask questions about their job responsibilities. One student addressed this point by stating, “If anything was done differently, it would be to ask more questions. It is easy to become apprehensive of asking too many questions because no one wants to be a bother.”


The communication process between Dr. Holland and each business is not insufficient, but we feel this could also be improved. Dr. Holland stated that she communicates with each business only six times a year, once at the start and once at the conclusion of each semester. She indicated she really doesn’t have time to go out and visit each business like she wants or each company might expect. Dr. Holland would also like the student to update her throughout the semester on their progress, but usually she only receives this update with the midterm report. She would also like to stay in contact with the students after the internship is completed but this hardly ever takes place.


Insufficient relationship focus is not really a huge factor in the internship program. However, Dr. Holland did indicate that she tried to establish contact with former interns by hiring a student to make phone calls to determine their current job status. This initiative failed when the student employed to take on this task did not produce any results. Budget cuts and the lack of results from the previous experience have made her hesitant to allocate anymore time, money, or effort to continuing relationships with interns after they have completed the program.


Based off the survey we conducted and the interview with Dr. Holland, we have developed some recommendations for the internship program. The recommendations are divided up among each of the four primary factors that affect the width of gap 1.


Recommendations for Marketing Research


There is very little marketing research done by Dr. Holland in the internship program. We feel that by instilling complaint solicitation research Dr. Holland can improve the internship program. Complaint solicitation requires little money and not much time, two aspects that will be valuable for Dr. Holland. Additionally, the research will help her to identify common service failure points that are preventing her students from receiving the real world experience and positive internship they are seeking.


Recommendations for Lack of upward communication


With the lack of upward communication our recommendations are to encourage both the student and the business to communicate more with Dr. Holland. As stated earlier Dr. Holland only communicates with each business six times a year, this is actually quite a bit of work on her part. If more businesses were to contact Dr. Holland during the internship to let her know how they felt things were going it could prove to be very helpful. The same concept would work from the student’s perspective. The only issue is how to implement this idea. Dr. Holland could make it very well known to both parties what the easiest way to contact her. The students already have to send her a midterm report via e-mail and she could encourage them to e-mail her more frequently if there are any problems. Also, Dr. Holland could encourage the interns to ask questions not just of her but the business as well. Some students are hesitant to ask questions because they feel they are being a burden. Dr. Holland could make sure to clearly communicate that questions are part of the internship process and if there are any problems she should be notified immediately.


Recommendations for Insufficient Relationship Focus


For insufficient relationship focus the recommendations are to try to keep a relationship with past interns. Stated earlier, Dr. Holland said that she tried to stay in contact with past interns by phoning them and determining their current job status. Our recommendation is to ask students if they are willing to stay in contact as advisors to the program. These past interns could inform the current students of what to expect from certain companies. In the long run it is hard to keep a long relationship focus with this service because its focus is so geared toward new customers.


Recommendations for Inadequate Service Recovery


In providing a better service recovery system, we have found that two key things are missing. Although Dr. Holland has a system in place to address problems when they arise, there is no system for the complaints to be received. Therefore, the first recommendation is for Dr. Holland to make it easier to receive complaints. This will encourage “voicers” to give Dr. Holland their input in a constructive manner. Dr. Holland can encourage the student to constructively criticize the internship if it is not going well before the required midterm report. She can do this by explaining it verbally during the interview process or written in the internship information packet. By letting students know upfront their complaints are encouraged, they will be more likely to share information and help the program to become more efficient. Dr. Holland stated in her interview that she sent three different students to one manager before finding out the mental instability of that manager. Only when the manager was eventually put into a psychiatric ward was Dr. Holland made aware of the situation. Dr. Holland did not receive any complaints about the internships and was not quickly alerted to the situation. If the students had been encouraged to complain they could have perhaps communicated these problems more effectively. The second recommendation is to let students know who to complain to. Again, this can be done verbally in the interview of written in the internship packet. By making the students aware to complain to her, the complaint will more likely get up the chain of command. Furthermore, this will prevent complaining to friends, family or third parties and prevent bad word of mouth about the internship service.








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