Government Controllers Speak

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FEI Weekly

April 16, 2020

CFO optimism hits 2008 levels and 3 ways to tell your story on LinkedIn.

CFO Optimism Sinks to 2008 Levels

CFO

U.S. CFO optimism has dropped to a new low due to the widespread and sudden effects of the coronavirus pandemic, according to the Duke University/CFO Global Business Outlook survey. The optimism index was at 58 in the first half of March before plummeting to the low 40s in the second half of the month, which reflects that CFO sentiment is as bleak as it was during the 2008 Great Recession.

China's Accounting Scandals Hold a Lesson for the US

Bloomberg

Recent weeks have ushered in a spectacular crumbling of some of the most hyped U.S.-listed Chinese tech and consumer companies, kicked off by Starbucks challenger Luckin Coffee Inc. If there’s a lesson here for U.S. companies it’s that as the economy seizes up and funding grows tight, the virus could be the stock market and venture capital's best disinfectant for fraud. It will be harder for high-flying companies to cover up numbers that look too good to be true. And much like the disease outbreak before it, the financial scandals may not stay confined to China for long.

JCPenney Considers Bankruptcy

Yahoo Finance

JCPenney is exploring filing for bankruptcy protection after the coronavirus pandemic forced the U.S. retailer to temporarily shut its 850 department stores, upending its turnaround plans, according to people familiar with the matter. Though the company has access to enough cash to survive in the months ahead, they are contemplating a bankruptcy filing as one way to rework its unsustainable finances and save money on looming debt payments, which include significant annual interest expenses.

We've Lost $13.4M to Fraud Linked to COVID-19

CNBC

The top complaint categories for Covid-19 scams are related to travel and vacations, online shopping, bogus text messages and imposter scams. The IRS recently warned of scammers trying to steal the stimulus checks it’s sending Americans to help them weather the economic repercussions of Covid-19. The $13.4 million lost to these scams is around 3% of the total $432.4 million in fraud reported to the FTC through the end of March.

3 Ways to Tell Your Story on LinkedIn

HBR

To curate your LinkedIn page for storytelling success, follow these steps: Write your own happy ending, know your audience and connect the dots for them, choose a LinkedIn profile or two that speak to you and break down what’s working and not working about yours as you see it, and what you love about these other people’s profiles.