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Showing posts from 2009

MOVING FORWARD: KASTURI SCHOOL OF ACCOUNTANCY

A PURPOSE
My career is strongly interlinked to the students success. Imagine, if one ACCA candidate graduates, it means a productive, profitable 30years of good career/business venture. That candidate may likely have own family to provide for, siblings to support and not to forget enduring parents to care for. Yes, you help one ACCA candidate to graduate, you help many.

My purpose, "Every ACCA Candidate CAN GRADUATE"

A REFLECTION
Having excess of 12 years lecturing experiences which includes mentoring, motivating and encouraging all ACCA candidates in few tuition centres, last being INTI College (Subang), I am more motivated to seek ways to enhance ACCA influence by bringing in more graduates. Constantly innovating, mentoring and motivating ACCA Candidates to nudge them to realise their personal potential.

A FUTURE
Yes, seeking opportunities on how to fulfil my (career) purpose . I decided to join - KASTURI SCHOOL OF ACCOUNTANCY - having seen its suitable strategy of making educ…

CONGRATULATIONS : F8 PRIZE WINNER in JUNE 2009 EXAMS

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Heartiest Congratulations to my student, Mr (Jack)Jian Hua Chew for scoring the highest marks for F8 in Malaysia. He beats thousands of other candidates. I am proud to admit he is hardworking, full class attendance and focused on exam techniques paid off.

If he can do it, so can all of you students. I always share the same passion to support and assist EVERYONE of YOU to pass. The fact that F8 has the LOWEST pass rate (shocking 19% only) in Malaysia pose an opportunity for you. The marking standard becomes relatively low compared to international standard. It means (unfortunately) that the majority of F8 candidates don't have a clue on how to manage and tackle the exam paper. But you have attended my classes, with lots and lots of exam techniques, put you all in better advantage.

To Jack, if you are reading this, though I am happy over your achievement, but this is only a battle you won. To win the War ie pass ACCA, you need to continue be strong, determined and

----- as Winston Chu…

P3 Target Practice for December 2009 Exam

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Pic 01: Are you ready to meet your opponent? Which are you in the picture?



Are you ready for the exams? Really? Confident? Well, try out the questions below and see how much you can generate as many points (ideally 100 points for a 100% exam) in 3 hours and 15 minutes.

Best wishes
Marcus


Question 1 Case study :
• Accounting firm travels frequently to clients’ office for audit, follow ups and deliver reports
• Problems of
 Late deliveries
 Poor communication with client on audit changes
 Outdated software and incompatibility with clients system
 High labour turnover.
 Loss of confidential documents.
Required :
a) Assess the internal weaknesses and external threats that Marks Accounting face. Note: Your answers need NOT include strengths and opportunities. [10 marks]
b) You are approach to evaluate the possibility to merge and Spencer Accounting firm. Write a report to Board evaluating the proposals risks and benefits. [12 marks include 2 professional marks]
c) Business Process Reengine…

P1 (ACCA) December 2009 Exam Tips

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Pic 01: How to balance internal controls, risk management, best practice without neglecting business objectives? Hello? Anybody out there?






ACCA P1: PROFESSIONAL ACCOUNTANT
Lecturer : Marcus Ong




Dear Students,

Take note of David Campbell recent article on internal and external actors. His has tendency to emphasise on ethics and internal 'governance'. Peruse and analyse the questions we have done and not to miss out the past years questions. Certainly useful for getting into P1 Jargon.

Best wishes.

Marcus

Question 1 Case Study:
Utility Services Firm is constructing a new power plant supply located near to forest reserves. Issues are:
 Potential destruction of Flora and Fauna due to construction. Consultants submitted a report on the extensiveness of the damage to government.
 Relocation of nearby villagers
 Government is concerned over political negativity of project
 Investors-clients threaten to pull out if the power plant is not completed in time for the proposed manufacturi…

F8 Audit and Assurance December 2009 Exam Tips

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I WILL SUCCEED!



F8 : Audit and Assurance

Lecturer : Marcus Ong


Disclaimer of liabilities: While its advantageous to focus on high risk questions i.e. its likelihood that its examined in the coming exam, but a total reliance on them is detrimental to users' mental and emotional health. Discretion is required!

To my students of F8,

We came a long way, with many tutorials, questions and exam techniques discusse. Remember, you have to know the concepts and understand what part of the systems (namely sales/ purchases/ stocks/ cash/ wages) are being tested.

The following target questions are for your further practice and focus on likely exam questions. It prepares you mentally with a ‘draft answer’. In that at least 50% of the exam answer is prepared while you focus on using case study facts to integrate in your answer.

The target questions are actually covered in my questions bank, lecture notes, revision kit with you. Discuss with your class mates if you must.

Do Your Best,
Marcus



TARGE…

P3 PRACTICE QUESTION

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P3: Practice Question


Pictures : Investing in Your Future




Massachusetts University is an old and run down private institution. Though famous for its Business studies program, many students find the place not conducive for studies. The Dean, Alfred, has pushed for an extension annex building with view to increase class capacity. The Board of Directors, was skeptical over the ability to complete on time and if there is sufficient fund. However, with the proposed construction site, nearby villagers object to it since it means in future increased traffic flow through their already congested roads. Investors are keen only if they are convinced that the project is translated to higher tuition fees, hence better returns on investment.

The business program at Massachusetts does not simply focus on the basic skills a student will need to succeed in business, but also shapes the student's character as a whole. One of Massachusetts’s goals is to develop students into responsible and knowledgea…

PETRONAS' Corporate Governance

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Pic 01: The twins that made Malaysia famous


Pic 02: The cash cow for gas station owners



Pic 03: Hassan Merican, Chartered Accountant, the CEO of Malaysia's largest and most globalised company



Pic 04: Ladies, a useful fact for you? Oil & gas industry has smartest,fit-test and good looking engineers than any industry. I know, because my younger brother in ONE! haha!


P1 (ACCA): OPEN BOOK TEST
- Strictly for exam practice in P1 (Professional Accountant). The case study is “sensationalise” to allow scope of corporate governance recommendations.


A DECADE after opening, the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur are no longer the world’s tallest. But Petroliam Nasional, the company that built them, continues to grow. It exports lots of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to booming Asian neighbours and owns the world’s largest fleet of LNG tankers. It is also expanding abroad: last year operations outside Malaysia brought in 42% of its M$264 billion ($77 billion) revenue, up from 35% in 2005. Fore…

Accountant's Job Prospects

I see everyone of you ACCA candidates as a SUCCESSFUL GRADUATE. I decided to enlighten or share with you on the prospects of being an accountant and related fields that require your [future] expertise.

I am pleased to link up with a useful site called http://www.accountantkey.com/. The creator is my talented friend, Mr Bill Low. I certainly hope you all can get good information on
- what is audit work like?
- what is happening to the audit tax industry?
- useful tips and the going on pertaining to Big 5 Audit firm.
- imagine, an AUDIT Partner charged with fraud. After the fall of Arthur Anderson, anything can happen!!

Please also enjoy and read up on all Business related articles links on the side bar, so crucial to P1, P3 and P5.

Work very hard today for a better tomorrow!!

Enjoy and best wishes.

100th POST: The Failure of Corporate Governance in Banking Sector

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Pictures : Fat Cats, nickname to greedy directors that weren't governed effectively




-applicable to P1 (ACCA)
My Blog's 100th POST! Time flies. Experience increases. Expertise sharpens. These bound to happen, as lecturers or students alike when you do research and explain your analysis. I must say, more than 12 years in lecturing profession has been enriching in knowledge and enjoyable in teaching/guiding my students to ACCA SUCCESS.

Let's see the article below extracted from Economists.com. Read it and see what recommendations you can forward to improve the Corporate Governance. The bankers - fat cats have been notorious in taking 50% of accumalated profits past 10 years and leaving 50% for its owners. When the finance sector collapsed, causing the destruction of billions of shareholders' wealth, these fat cats Directors cooly walked away unscathed!

The governmments namely UK & USA scrambled to pump in billions of dollars aid to prop up the banks. As a side note, Dr. …

Canon may follow Xerox's Acquisition trail –Awaiting Disaster?

- related to P3 (BA)

P3 (Business Analysis, ACCA) Paper in action
Many businesses failed to ask a simple basic but paradoxically difficult question, “What business are we in?” using visions, mission statement and corporate objectives are mere tools to communicate but they fail when Board lacks the commitment and drive. Worse yet, according to Sally Yeung and Andrew Campbell, such statements made are mere ‘lip-service’.

The case study below shows how a distressed company, Canon, tries to re-identify itself. It didn’t want to sell boxes of Information Technology equipment but takes a step further in saying, “Why customers need us?”

In P3 (Business Analysis, ACCA) Paper, there is a real chance of this type of question tested. So familiarise yourself with this topic from the excerpt edited report. Enjoy...

Following the Joneses : Canon’s re-positioning process
Recall Porter’s critique that acquisitions generally destroys shareholders’ value. Well, despite empirical evidence, many firms never …

Government's TOP 10 Recovery Strategies

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Pic 01 (left) : Hmmm... is it Debit or Credit?
Pic 02 (Right): Boys, oh boy... you have a long way to go



Recession may not be a bad word. Japan, South Korea experienced economic disasters after World War II and Korean War respectively. WIth zilch and only armed with human spirit, both countries grew phenomenally over 3 decades since the 1950's.

TOP 10 Actions
Having seen all of the above, Malaysian Government can do wonders to turn around the economy:

1. At least a 9% budget deficit spending to compensate the weak aggregate demand of consumptions and investments. Note this must continue for at least 3 years, as threats of inflation is low due to liquidity trap situation which is an increase in money supply may not increase threat of interest rate hikes.

2. Keep interest rates low to below 2% ie many local banks offering rates at BLR less 2% with intention to stimulate loan demand.

3. Focus on infrastructure development in lagging states especially Penang, Johor, Kelantan and Trenggan…

Nobel Prize-winning economist – Horrifying Prognosis

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From left to right:
Pic 01 - 03 : Great Depression of 1930s. People lining up for food rations from USA government. We don't hope for this in Malaysia, which is only a developing nation. So shouldn't you ration your pocket money? Stretch it further?

Pic 04: Renown Economist, Paul Krugman


Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman said damage from the U.S. recession may persist “for a very long time,” with no clear engine for renewed growth.

“I’m really quite scared that we could muddle along,” Krugman said in a lecture today at the London School of Economics and Political Science. “I really do see the possibility of a global version of the Japanese ‘lost decade’ without the prospect of an export-led recovery. This could be unpleasant for a very long time.”

U.S. stocks erased a decline yesterday after Krugman said the economy will probably emerge from the recession by September. Recent reports showing smaller declines in housing and manufacturing and fewer job losses have reinforc…

Recession- What it means? Part II

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(left to right)
Pic 01: You think this is tough, boy, wait until you reach ACCA level
Pic 02: Arrgghhh...This kids drive me up the wall.
Pic 03: To our happiness...Pic 04: Beautiful, Wonderful and Meaningful evening
Pic 05: President Obama's deficit spending is too little, too late

Recession Explained
Why do factories close down despite that high quality products are churned out? Why hardworking people are laid off from work, a waste of human talents that go unemployed? Why good location properties have few tenants? Puzzling as these questions are, but the economist will say it’s due to recession. Inspired and horrified by Economist Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman’s book – The Return of Depression Economics, allow me explain it in simple terms:

Romantic Couples and Babysitter Couples
Say in Singapore, there is this exclusive club where couples are of the upper middle income earners. These couples have children and they don’t trust hiring babysitters. This is inconvenient if couples want to sp…

Recession- What it means? Part I

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Pic 01: Late USA President on recession definition. (By the way, his previous occupation is an actor!) “Recession is when your neighbour loses his job, depression is when you lose yours.” (Ronald Reagan, 1985)




Youths favourite hangouts -From Left to right: Pic 02: Starbucks cafes Pic 03: Papa Rich cafes

I observed many youths ever so frequently patronise Starbucks, McD, Kopitiam in Subang SS15 areas. I can’ help it but think, do these people know the concept of recession? Perhaps their pocket money is unaffected. Ignorance may not be bliss, as for the Law often use “Ignorantia (juris) non excusat” which translates from Latin “Ignorance is no excuse”. Recession is bad and scary, indeed!

Year 2008, you have undoubtedly heard the term "recession" mentioned on media (unless you are too busy indulging in Female, Cosmo, Male Fitness Magazines). You've probably heard of global recession starting in United States with sub-prime property crisis to financial meltdown that spread like a…

NEW VIGOUR, RENEWED CULTURE- I AM A BUMIPUTERA!

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- Practice Question for P1 (ACCA) and sociological analysis



Pic 01: If I can do it (Succeed), so can anybody!



New generation of Bumiputera risk-takers (in a good way) as entrepreneurs are emerging in Malaysian Corporate scene. Read on to know an outstanding businessman. Also a question on Risk Assessment is included to pique and pick your mind- to test your knowledge and especially application which is so crucial to P1 (ACCA) Professional Accountant subject.

Empire Builder (Chandler)
IF WHAT has been said and reported about Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary (Picture 01) is true, then he is worth RM971 million - on paper at least. Touted as the new `Bumiputera' corporate player in town, Syed Mokhtar rose to prominence last year. The 50-year-old tycoon is more heard than seen. He is said to be behind three public listed companies and the RM2.4- billion Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP) in Johor. Syed Mokhtar's interest is masked under myriad private companies with Seaport Terminal Holdings…

P1 answers: AAA Ethics Model

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- relevant to P1 candidates.



From left to right:
Pic 01: Disneyland, the happiest place on earth
Pic 02: Most memorable ladies
Pic 03: Your reward for graduating, be there!



Dear Intensive Practice Sessions P1 candidates,
As promised, the answer to the case study involving Disney Limited.

Remember, work very hard.

Marcus





ANSWER TO CASE STUDY: Ethics model AAA (AMERICAN ACCOUNTING ASSC.)
1. WHAT ARE THE FACTS?
The plant is in financial distress, closure is inevitable. Disney wants the contract completed or HS will face lawsuits as per contract.

2. WHAT ETHICAL ISSUES INVOLVED?
Whether the employees have the right to know about their future, albeit bleak since it involves their employment security. Naturally, if they have been told, key staff will find employment elsewhere, resulting in joepardising the Disney contract.

If employees are told, shareholders risked losing more with the contract unfulfilled. The ethical issue here is to what degree is the Board responsible to ‘both’ shareholders and e…

ANTIDOTE TO STRESS = HUMOUR

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Dear all,

Exams are around the corner i.e. your mock exams and of course the real exam. Stress is high. A good antidote is exercise and at times humour.

So here is some serious humour, in which I think many of you guys may agree with me that there is an angle of truth to it. Ha Ha. Women is the universe most mysterious, intriguing and potentially igniting being. It takes eternity for the (dumb) men to understand this wonderful, beautiful and meaningful being.

SERIOUS HUMOUR I : MALE AND FEMALE BRAINS
What goes through your mind when someone says "Lets go for a drink"?‏





Beer Commercial, "Thank God you are a Man."







SERIOUS HUMOUR II : MALE AND FEMALE FLIES
A woman walked into the kitchen to find her husband stalking a round with a fly swatter."What are you doing?" she asked.

"Hunting flies," He responded.

"Oh, killing any?" She asked.

"Yep, three males, two females," he replied.

Intrigued, she asked, How can you tell?

He responded, "Th…

MALAYSIA STOCK EXHANGE: BEAR MARKET RALLY

-related to P3, P5 and Uncles & Aunties in Malaysia whose favourite investment motto is "Buy High, Sell Low".

1. The Bursa Malaysia Stock Market has risen by 100 points past 2 weeks to 963 Composite Index. It usually is a precursor to future economic performance of 6 months. However, is it really a sign of recovery? I have my reservations. Its simply too early to cry out, "All's well."

2. But the current reality is all those who invested, say 4 months ago, would profit handsomely. Assuming they buy blue chip stocks. For instance, Topglove Berhad rose from RM3.50 to RM5.50 per share since December 30, 2008. An 57% rise.

3. As a general rule of thumb, the stock market looks to the future for its current performance. The past is well past. Still it tells us what kind of future it should bring. In this case, one should see in the past say the 2008, how much damaged the economic global recession has caused.

4. A simple logic, is if a patient is in out-patient treatm…

ANALYSING STEVE SKIDMORE

-related to P3 candidates

P3 examiner has broke away from the conventional step of setting the exam paper. This June 2009 will be his debut show of what he is truly interested. One can only suspect that his consultancy background in IT and being a former Paper 2.1 examiner, his approach will be more advisory capacity.

I have inserted a good link "Where Technology is Business" for all of you to read and familiarise with the practical exposures. On the left side bar is category and link named ENHANCING ACCA SUCCESS LINK : http://www.zdnetasia.com/news/business/

A good article to start with is the Takeover of Skype for a sum of US$1billion. Original owners are buying back with intention to list it next year. This case study shows finance strategy at play and the rewarding aspects of innovative culture that leads to the development of Internet Phone free services. Yet Skype can still generate revenues excess of US$500million in 2008. A case of offering free services but by word of …

P3 Business Analysis: Changes (Steve Skidmore)

- Relevant to all P3 ACCA candidates. Extracted from Student Newsletter, January 2009.

The Paper P3, Business Analysis Study Guide currently defines the exam format as follows:

This question is worth 50 marks and will be closely based on the capabilities defined in Sections A, B, and C of the syllabus, and supported by capabilities defined in Sections H and I. It will occasionally be supported by capabilities defined in Sections D, E, F, and G of the syllabus.

The case study scenario will always include quantitative information, which might include financial data.

Section B will include three discrete questions, each worth 25 marks. Candidates must answer two questions in this section. At least two of the questions in this section will be based on capabilities defined in Sections D, E, F, G, and I of the syllabus. At most, one question in this section will be based on capabilities defined in Sections A, B, and C of the syllabus. Capabilities defined in Section H of the syllabus may be use…

MALAYSIA POOR RATING IN CORRUPTION PERCEPTION INDEX

- Relevant to P1 and P3. Also of interest to all Malaysians."Corruption is stealing from the poor." (Latin Proverb)

Malaysia's corruption perception index remains unchanged from year 2007 at 5.1. While the score remained the same, the country had, however, slid from 43rd to 47th place in the ranking of 180 countries. It rates them on a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 10 (highly clean). Year 2008, Denmark, New Zealand and Sweden share the highest score at 9.3, followed by Singapore at 9.2.President of Transparency International Malaysia Tan Sri Ramon Navaratnam said that this development was disconcerting. Malaysia's CP index has fluctuated between 4.9 in 2002 and 5.1 in 2008."What the latest findings show is that what the government has done so far to eradicate corruption has failed to make an impact. People don't believe any of these changes are real or meaningful for fighting corruption in the public sector required strong political will." Navaratnam…