Magazine article Risk Management

Global Guidance: Resources for International Risk Managers

Magazine article Risk Management

Global Guidance: Resources for International Risk Managers

Article excerpt

Risk managers of companies exploring or participating in international business ventures will find the World Wide Web lives up to its name. Whether you need economic statistics about a country or want to check earthquake activity at a specific facility, the chances are good that searching the Web will provide whatever information you're looking for.

For information about specific countries and regions, a couple of international organizations provide good starting points. The Web site for the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (http://www.oecd.fr) offers a series of industry analyses and regional conference reports summarizing economic conditions, social effects of the global economy and logistical trends in Europe. Some documents can be downloaded without charge while others must be ordered online.

Similar information can be found at the World Bank's Web site (http:// www.worldbank.org), where country-specific overviews provide economic data, reports on political conditions and descriptions of bank projects. For example, the bank's report on Hungary described recent gross national product trends, market reforms, privatization efforts and improvements to public transportation. The World Trade Organization (http://www.wto.org) provides a searchable database of trade-related reports and statistics.

Country and industry data are also available from the U.S. International Trade Commission (http://www.usitc.gov) and the U.S. Export-Import Bank (http://www.exim.gov). The trade commission's site allows users to download tariff schedules and provides links to a variety of trade and statistical resources. The Export-Import Bank provides lending policy summaries and credit insurance rates for various countries. The Summit of the Americas home page (http://americas. fiu.edu/main) provides trade and customs information for companies doing business in Central and South America.

In the News

For monitoring international business news and conditions, the home page of London's Financial Times (http://www. ft.com) provides a comprehensive range of news reports and other resources. After registering (for free), users can read current international news and business updates and search for archived stories. The site's "market and investment" section provides stock index results from the United States, England, Germany, France and Japan, which are updated several times a day. You can also check stock prices and exchange rates in international markets.

Risk managers can also monitor events in countries around the world by checking Web sites sponsored by local media outlets. …

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