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Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment, Act No 53 of 2003. The Act gives effect to South Africa�s national economic transformation campaign by empowering the Minister of Trade and Industry to publish regulations, industry or sector charters and Codes to advance BEE

The recognition or licensing of an agency (verification agency) by the DTI to verify BEE credentials and issue a BEE verification certificate

A business, or part thereof, when sold to black investors or shareholders to fulfil the ownership requirements of BEE

Associated Enterprise :
A separate business entity used to conclude, or created as a result of, a BEE transaction involving the sale of an enterprise or asset, whose black ownership can be credited to the ownership score of the measured entity that created it

A South African bank, formed through an amalgamation of Allied Bank, Trust Bank, United and Volkskas. ABSA was acquired by a British bank, Barclays, in 2005.

Account :
1. (as a noun) an account means a agreement or arrangement between two or more persons - one a buyer, the other a seller - to exchange goods or services especially with monetary value, e.g. an arrangement between a clothes retailer and a customer, which allows the customer to buy for a period of time, including credit sale agreements. 2. Another meaning of account - still as a noun - could be a relationship between a financial institution such as a bank and an individual or business for which money is kept for the purpose of deposits, withdrawals, transfers, etc. In this case the bank is allowed to charge interest on those who borrow from it, and is expected to pay interest to those who deposit money. 3. In accounting, account as a noun represents an bookkeeping entry to denote a group of related transactions such as income streams or expenses, liabilities or assets e.g. stationery, travelling expenses or entertainment, for the purpose of reporting.

That function of a business which is concerned with the representation of business decisions, plans, transactions, trading and operational activities - be they cash or credit - assets and liabilities. This follows set procedures and conventions, often summarises what has been happening in a business within a set period, called an accounting period or financial year - could be a quarter, half a year or a full year. Accounting does not only address what has happened already (financial accounting), but can also be used in planning the future such as in budgeting and making decisions about capital expenditure (management accounting). users of accounts or financial reports or statements are managers, investors, analysts, government. Accounting works more like a hospital bed-letter or a school report card, telling us about the state of health of a business, progress made, problem areas and things that require improvement. The real value of financial accounts, though, is in analysis, where different periods, companies and industries are compared to each other to establish what is standard, below standard or exceptional. Accounting is practiced by accountants with the help of book-keepers. Different countries set different standards and intepretations of the accounting concepts, which standards are upheld by the various professional bodies. Financial reports of listed companies and private companies must be audited by external independent auditors. Auditors are themselves professional accountants who would not have assisted in the preparation of the financial reports being audited. This requirement ensures that the users of financial reports do not simply have to take the word of management.

An official recognition of a service provider as meeting certain professional standards. Accreditation is normally granted on an annual basis or at least for a fixed period of time, renewable on condition that the service provider maintains the required standards. Financial planners are some of the professionals that have to be accredited by professional bodies.

acid test ratio:
acid test ratio - another name for quick ratio.

Airports Company of South Africa. This company owns and operates the airports of South Africa. Its major shareholders are the South African government and Aeroporti di Roma (until August 2005, when the 20% was bought by the PIC)

A factor of how a company is run with specific reference to - among others - its ability to turn stock over, i.e. how long it takes the company to sell stock once it has bought or produced it. The shorter the time that the stock stays in the company's store room, the more likely it is to generate good returns for its shareholders. This is because stock in a store room costs money the company a lot of money in insurance and also risks the loss of it being damaged or becoming obsolete.

One of the seven continents of the world. These are Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Europe, Australia and Antarctica. Together with Asia and South America, Africa offers growth opportunities to the companies already established in the west, due to their abundant natural resources and large population sizes.

Africa Institute of South Africa:
A think-tank and research house situated in Pretoria, Gauteng Province, specialising in the economic, social and political affairs of the African continent.

African Growth & Opportunity Act, a law signed in May 2000 as Title 1 under the Trade & Development Act of the United States to open access to the US markets for specific products from certain qualifying (eligible) African countries. Products of the eligible African countries - qualification determined by the US on the basis of governance, rule of law and commitment to free market policies - include textiles, steel and agricultural produce.

The science or process of food production through the rearing of animals and/or the cultivation of plants. As an economic activity, agriculture can take the form of subsistence (producing only to meet the needs of the farmer) or commercial farming.

Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome/Human Immune-Deficiency Virus.

The identification of where a cost incurred in a business belongs. In accounting, it is important that costs are identified properly so that the users of financial statements can be able to analyse the origin of various costs to enable and so that management can implement cost control measures.

All-Share Index:
The indicator of the performance of the JSE. When you hear of the markets being up, the All Share Index is also up. In fact, the only way to tell whether the 'market went up' is by checking the level of the All Share Index, to ensure that it is higher than what it was when the trading day opened. You will recall that investors buy shares only when they believe that they can sell them later at a better price or earn dividends from holding on to them. Both these opinions mean that the investor only buys shares if they are optimistic about the price. When the collective activity on the securities exchange such as the JSE is one of more investors wanting to buy shares, there is increased demand for them, which is bound to increase the price of an average share. So, at the end of such a trading day, the net effect of the shareholders' actions of buying would have been an upward movement in the prices of the most popular shares, hence the expression of the 'market being up'. A specific index such as the ALSI 40 will give you the same indication, but of a selection of shares. The equivalent of the All Share Index on the New York Stock Exchange is the Dow or Dow Jones, on the London Stock Exchange - the FTSE, in France it is the CAC, in Germany - the DAX, in Australia the ASX, in Hong Kong the Hang Seng, and in Japan the Nikkei Index. Again on the New York Stock Exchange, you might hear of the Fortune 500, being the index indicating the performance of a specific selection of shares on the exchange.

ALSI 40:
See All Share Index.

The Alternative Stock Exchange, meant to enable small companies that would otherwise not be able to afford a listing on the main board of the JSE due to the costs of a listing or a smaller asset base. Some companies use an Alt-X listing to gain entry to the main board at a later stage. It used to be the Development & Venture Capital Board before 2003.

The use of financial information to gain a better understanding of a business. Users of financial statements always try to isolate problem areas and strengths or opportunities that a business presents to them. They can only achieve this by studying the financial information, like a doctor studies a patient's medical information. Their training enables them to decide what action to take after they have compared the results to those of the previous years, those of other companies in the same industry or sector, interviewed management and the company's suppliers and customers. Analysis is usually based on a set of ratios such as liquidity ratios, profitability and activity ratios. Analysis does not tell one what to do, but gives them the information they want in the form they want it. It is still the responsibility of the analyst or management or investor to decide. A saying that sums it all up in finance goes: 'the analysis is only as good as the analyst!'

One who conducts an analysis of financial information.

Anything owned by an individual that has a cash value. This includes property, goods, savings or investments. Item of value owned by an individual. Assets that can be quickly converted into cash are considered "liquid assets." These include bank accounts, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and so on. Other assets include real estate, personal property, and debts owed to an individual by others. An economic resource belonging to a company or entity, an item owned by the company or entity; an asset has future economic benefit and is the result of past financial transaction.

The successor of the Organisation of African Unity. One of the important steps taken by the African Union was to set up the African Peer Review Mechanism to improve democratic governance in Africa, under the flagship programme - NEPAD. Another achievement of the African Union was to place the issues of Africa on the agenda of influential world leaders.

Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar'Adua:
President of Nigeria from April 2007; successor of President Olusegun Obasanjo. Member of his predecessor's Peoples' Democratic Party (PDP) and Governor of the Katsina State - where he was born in 1951. Holder of an M.Sc Degree in Analytical Chemistry, President Yar'Adua was the first governor and President to publicly declare his assets.

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line is a data communications technology that enables faster data transmission over copper telephone lines than a conventional voiceband modem can provide. It does this by utilizing frequencies that are not used by a voice telephone call

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