a) a document issued by a seller to a buyer listing the goods or services supplied and stating the sum of money due
b) something that is transacted, esp. a business deal or negotiation
c) a person or commercial enterprise to whom money is owed
d) a future financial obligation or contingent liability
e) a person or commercial enterprise that owes a financial obligation
f)a person who has insufficient assets to meet debts and liabilities
g) the income or reward accruing to a successful entrepreneur and held to be the motivating factor of all economic activity in a capitalist economy
h) the business of purchasing debts from clients at a discount and making a profit from their collection
i) the sum of money that a bank makes available to a client in excess of any deposit
j) a compulsory financial contribution imposed by a government to raise revenue, levied on the income or property of persons or organizations, on the production costs or sales prices of goods and services, etc
III. Read the text and say why the business managers need to keep a record of their transactions.
The purpose of any business is to make a profit. Profit is not a dirty word. It simply means that the resources which have been entrusted to us have been used effectively. The more effectively the resources have been used, the more profit will be made. If all the businesses in a country were making a loss there would be an economic disaster. The government taxes business profits and uses the proceeds to pay for free education, the National Health Service, unemployment pay, old age pensions and national defense among other things. So one of the reasons the business managers need to keep a record of their transactions is to allow the Inspector of Taxes to calculate how much tax is due. However, there are other reasons why the business managers want to keep financial records. They want to know whether the policies they are applying are proving to be successful or otherwise. They want to know whether modifications are called for. They also want to know who owes them money (debtors) and to whom they owe money (creditors). They want to make sure they collect all the monies which are due to them, and they also want to make sure they are not suddenly confronted by a creditor they had forgotten about.
Apart from retail business the majority of sales are for credit. When manufacturers sell goods to their retail customers, the retailers will not be expected to pay for them until they have had a chance to sell them to the public. That is the way business normally operates. By giving their customers, say, two months' credit, the manufacturers are giving them ample time to raise the funds from the proceeds of the sale.
The manufacturers' suppliers - the people who provide them with the raw materials - will in turn give the manufacturers time to raise the funds. A considerable degree of interdependency is thus developed. The cash flow - payments in and out - are vital to a business. An adequate supply of working capital is essential if insolvency is to be avoided. A firm is said to be insolvent when it is unable to meet its financial commitments.
Since almost all of the business conducted between firms is on a credit basis, credit control becomes significant. Specific credit limits will be allocated to each customer. Thus a new customer, John Turner, might be allowed to have an outstanding account of £5,000 for three months, while Evelyn Corbett, who has been a satisfactory customer for more than a year, has a limit of twice that amount.
Before any order is passed through to the Dispatch Department in the factory, it will be checked against the customer and the credit rating. The salespeople are not allowed to give customers credit when these limits would be exceeded, unless there is a special clearance from the Sales Manager.
The drive for increased sales will make the large influential customer particularly attractive and for this reason they are likely to receive preferential treatment when credit ratings are determined.
Firms may attempt to reduce the risk of loss through bad debts by a variety of devices. They usually offer cash discounts for prompt payment and often operate a credit control department to monitor the granting of credit and the collection of debts. It is also possible to resort to a practice known as factoring (or invoice discounting) whereby specialist companies are approached with a view to their purchasing the book debts at a discount. They will collect the debts and keep any accounting records required.
IV. Answer the questions using the active vocabulary of the text.
1. What is the purpose of any business?
2. What does profit mean for a company?
3. How is an economic disaster connected with profit?
4. Why are the tax authorities interested in the accounts of a business?
5. Who benefits when a business makes a profit?
6. Why is cash flow important to a business?
7. When is a firm considered insolvent?
8. How are credit ratings determined?
9. What should a salesperson do before selling goods on credit?
10. What does a credit control department do?
11. How does factoring operate?
12. Why do you think a sales manager and a credit control manager might sometimes come into conflict?
V. Read the text and say whether these statements are true (T) or false (F).
1. The more effectively the resources have been used, the less profit will be made.
2. A firm is said to be insolvent when it is unable to meet its financial commitments.
3. So one of the reasons the business managers need to keep a record of their transactions is to hide them from the Inspector of Taxes.
4. The salespeople are allowed to give customers credit when these limits would be exceeded, unless there is a special clearance from the Sales Manager.
5. Companies don’t usually offer cash discounts for prompt payment.
6. A firm is said to be insolvent when it is unable to meet its financial commitments.
VI. Find Russian equivalents to the following phrases in the second column.
1.make a profit
2.make a loss
5.old age pension
VII. Choose the appropriate translation of the following sentences.
1. They want to know whether the policies they are applying are proving to be successful or otherwise.
2. By giving their customers, say, two months' credit, the manufacturers are giving them ample time to raise the funds from the proceeds of the sale.
3. The cash flow- payments in and out - are vital to a business.
4. Firms may attempt to reduce the risk of loss through bad debts by a variety of devices.
VIII. Make an outline of the text consisting of 5-8 sentences.
IX. Retell the text according to its outline.
1. Adrian Wallwork. Business Options. Oxford University Press, 2001.
2. David Cotton, Sue Robbins. Business Class. Longman, 2006.
3. Leo Jones. Richard Alexander. New International Business English. Cambridge University Press, 1996.
4. Leo Jones. New Progress to First Certificate. Cambridge University Press, 1997.
5. Michael McCarty, Felicity O’Dell. English in Use. Cambridge University Press, 1994.