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As governments act in unison to stabilize world markets–the US, in particular, is now seeking to motivate healthy banks to take over sick ones with a $250 billion rescue fund–and a falling Libor rate that signals the beginning of a credit thaw, could it be the earth has finally stopped shaking? It’s still hard to forecast the aftermath, except that a deepening recession spreading worldwide means everyone will need to make adjustments. Risk is also now at the top of all agendas. More regulation may not be so bad and treasury operations have taken on a greater sense of urgency and priority. Liquidity and cash management are front and center, so are increasing efficiencies with technology, right-sizing costs and consolidating international operations. So it is fitting that every year at this time Treasury & Risk presents the winning entries in its Alexander Hamilton Awards that recognize best practices. This year’s overall winner, Honeywell International Inc., takes top honors for the second time in a row, particularly for being ahead of the curve on these critical issues. Other winners, too, show foresight in positioning their companies to weather the storm. And it’s no time to panic, writes senior contributor Richard Gamble in outlining how treasurers are coping with the crisis. In this issue we also present the top senior financial executives who happen to be women, whose skills and talents undoubtedly will be called upon to help their companies steer through these turbulent times and get back to the new normal–whatever that is.

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