Friday, July 17, 2009

French to English: Annual Reports, Part 2

I get amused with one phrase that 99% of annual reports have:  "forward-looking statements" (énoncés prospectifs in French).

annualreports2 The way I understand it, forward-looking statements are, in a nutshell, predictions of future performance.  United States law stipulates that forward-looking statements cannot be considered as facts; rather they must be predictions or "readings" into future possibilities.  To ensure that such predictions are not taken as absolute, words like "believe", "estimate", "may", "should", "expect", "could" and others are used. 

For the sake of investors, companies need to make forward-looking statements so that investors don't withdraw their investments and go with the competition.  After all, investors are in it for the money.  They want the assurance that the company has bright prospects and that it will continue to be profitable.



excédent brut d"exploitation EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization)
rentrée de fonds cash flow
valeur comptable book value
total de l'actif (or actif total) total assets
biens immobiliers et éequipement property and equipment
billet portant intérêt interest-bearing note
avoir des actionnaires shareholders' equity
capitalisation boursière market capitalization

Respect for the environment has sent companies scrambling for ways to save paper and to reduce waste.  Companies now offer investors and other interested parties to view annual reports and balance sheets online.  You may have also received notices from your brokers or investment managers asking if you still wish to receive statements and reports, and how often you want to receive them.

Preparing annual reports is a long process.  Because it is a more formal method of communicating with people outside the company, preparing it demands time, money and resources.  For serious investors, it is a document they look forward to receiving once a year.  It is one way they keep tabs on the company and how much it made in any given quarter. 

There's probably two disadvantages to annual reports:  one, it gives competitors the information they need for purposes of strategy, and two, companies who suffered setbacks in the year just ended still have to produce an annual report.  Thank the securities regulators for that requirement.



produit de la vente sales proceeds
rendement du capital investi (RCI) return on investment (ROI)
action à vote multiple multiple voting shares
action à droit de vote subalterne subordinate voting share
dividendes dividends
immobilisations capital assets
revenu net net income
gouvernance d'entreprise corporate governance

annualreports4 Writing annual reports can be a lucrative source of income for freelance writers.  Writers charge per hour or per project.  Hourly rates go from $40.00 (low end) to $150.00 (high end).  As for projects, fees can range from $2,500.00-$3,000 (low end) to $15,000 (high end).  Of course companies will easily find writers who charge in the mid range.

And how much can translators make to translate an annual report?  A few will charge a fixed project fee, many charge on a per word basis (from $0.08 to 0.35 - low to high).

Not bad!

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