International Finance – KASNEB Syllabus



This paper is intended to equip the candidate with knowledge, skills and attitudes that will enable him/her to analyse and manage investments in the international financial market environment.


A candidate who passes this paper should be able to:

  • Evaluate the operations of international financial markets
  • Analyse fixed versus flexible exchange rate regimes
  • Apply risk management strategies in international markets
  • Justify government intervention in international finance management and international debt crisis
  • Assess the role of the multinational corporation in international financial and capital flows
  • Analyse the various finance issues related to multinational corporations
  • Advise on various ethical dilemmas faced by multinational corporations’ managers
  • Identify types of country risks and their


The environment of international finance

  • International finance: Theory of comparative advantage, the theory of factors endowment, product life cycle, globalisation of the world economy, the multinational corporation
  • Goals of international finance
  • International flow of funds
  • The balance of payments: current account, financial account; factors affecting the financial account
  • Sources of international finance: rising funds in foreign markets and investments in foreign projects (short term, medium term and long term sources)
  • Terms of payments in international trading

The foreign exchange market

  • Function and structure of the foreign exchange market
  • Mechanics of foreign exchange: The market for foreign exchange; exchange rates(direct and indirect quotations, cross-rate calculations, bid-ask quotes and spreads, cross-rate calculations with bid-ask spreads), exchange rate determination
  • Parity relationship: interest rate parity, purchasing power parity; international fisher effects
  • Forecasting exchange rates
  • Indices of currency movements and exchange rate speculation; efficient fundamental and technical approaches to forecasting; forecasting performance and market efficiency; currency betas and consistent forecasts; international arbitrage

The foreign exchange rates regimes

  • Fixed or pegged exchange rate system
  • Floating or flexible exchange rate system
  • Managed floating exchange rate systems
  • Government Intervention in the foreign exchange market
  • Deficit finance and exchange rates

Managing foreign exchange exposure

  • Transaction exposure: identification of transaction exposure; hedging (forward, money and options market hedges), limitations of hedging short term exposure, hedging long term exposure, techniques of reducing transaction exposure
  • Economic exposure: Measuring economic exposure, managing operating exposures (selecting low cost production sites, flexible sourcing policy, research and development and product differentiation, financial hedging, and diversification of the market)
  • Translation exposure: Translation methods, financial accounting standards, hedging translation exposure

International financial markets

  • Motives for world trade and foreign investment
  • International financial institutions, the international monetary system, multilateral financial institutions, bilateral financial institution, trade-related investment measures (TRIMS),trading blocks
  • International banking and money market: International banking services; capital adequacy standards; banking regulations among countries; international money markets
  • International bond and equity markets: Long term financing decisions, foreign bonds, types of instruments, dual currency bonds, bond market credit ratings, market capitalisation (developed and developing countries), market structures, trading practices and costs, equity market benchmarks, trading in international equities

International financial crisis

  • The debt crisis
  • Causes and remedies of the international debt crises
  • Bank management of loan exposure
  • Bank assessment of country risk
  • Basel I,II and III requirements

Foreign direct investments (FDIs)

  • Definition of FDI
  • Classification of FDI
  • Motives for FDI
  • Foreign market entry strategies, factors favouring FDI, complexities of FDI, Imperfect markets and foreign direct investments FDI’s, benefits of international diversification, the direct foreign investment decision, political risks and foreign direct investments FDI’s

International capital structures and the cost of capital

  • Cost of Capital
  • Cost of Capital in segmented versus integrated markets
  • Comparisons of capital structure across countries
  • Cross-border listings of stocks
  • Capital asset pricing model (CAPM) under cross-listings
  • The effect of foreign equity ownership restrictions
  • The financial structure of subsidiaries

International capital budgeting

  • Subsidiary versus parent perspective: translation
  • Foreign investment decision process
  • Factors to consider in multinational capital budgeting
  • The adjusted present value model
  • Risk adjustment in capital budgeting analysis
  • Divesture analysis;  international      acquisitions,  reducing  exposure                                                           to host government takeovers

Multinational cash management

  • The size of cash balances, choice of currency
  • Cash management systems in practice: bilateral and multilateral netting of internal and external net cash flow
  • Transfer pricing and related issues
  • Blocked funds, methods used in moving blocked funds
  • Factors influencing financing in foreign currencies
  • Cash flow analysis for parent/subsidiary, optimisation of cash flowsand distortion of subsidiary performance, reduction in precautionary cash balances, financing with a portfolio of currencies

The international tax environment

  • The objectives of taxation: tax neutrality, tax equity
  • Types of taxation: income tax, withholding tax, value-added tax
  • National tax environment: worldwide taxation, territorial taxation, foreign tax credit
  • Organisational structures for reducing tax liabilities: branch and subsidiary income, tax havens, controlled foreign corporation
  • Use of transfer pricing to reduce taxes
  • Corporate behaviour and international tax laws
  • Multinational corporate policy

Ethics in the international financial environment

  • Ethical dilemmas for multinational corporations (MNC) and its manager
  • The Green movement

Country risk analysis

Country risk characteristics

  • Political risk characteristics
  • Economic risk characteristics
  • Financial risk characteristics

Measuring country risk/ country risk profiling

  • Methods or techniques of measuring country risk
  • Derivation of country risk rating
  • Comparison of country risk rating among different countries
  • Decision making process from country risk rating

Emerging issues and trends

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