Glossary of Business Terms – “B”

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B2B – (abbr) E-COMMERCE business to business, relating to an advertising or marketing program aimed at businesses doing business with other businesses as opposed to consumers.

B2C –(abbr) E-COMMERCE relating to an advertising or marketing program aimed at businesses doing business directly with consumers as opposed to other businesses.

Backlink Checking  – A means of finding out which Web pages are linking to a specific Web site.

Back-to-back Loan – An arrangement in which two companies in different countries borrow offsetting amounts in each other’s currency and each repays it at a specified future date in its domestic currency. Such a loan, often between a company and its foreign subsidiary, eliminates the risk of loss from exchange rate fluctuations.

Backlog  – The buildup of unfulfilled orders for a product, process, or production process that is behind schedule.

Back Office – The administrative staff of a company who do not have face-to-face contact with the company’s customers.

Back Pay – Pay that is owed to an employee for work carried out before the current payment period and is either overdue or results from a backdated pay increase.

Backup – A period in which bond yields rise and prices fall, or a sudden reversal in a stock market trend.

Bad Debts – Money owed to you that cannot be collected.

Balance – The amount of money remaining in an account.

Balanced Budget – A budget in which planned expenditure on goods and services and debt income can be met by current income from taxation and other central government receipts.

Balanced Investment Strategy – A strategy of investing in a variety of types of companies and financial instruments to reduce the risk of loss through poor performance of any one type.

Balance of Payments – A list of a country’s credit and debit transactions with international financial institutions and foreign countries in a specific period.

Balance of Trade – The difference between a country’s exports and imports of goods and services.

Balance Sheet – An itemized statement that lists the total assets and total liabilities of a given business to portray its net worth at a given moment in time.

Ballpark – An informal term for a rough, estimated figure. The term was derived from the approximate assessment of the number of spectators that might be made on the basis of a glance around at a sporting event.

Bank Card – A plastic card issued by a bank and accepted by merchants in payment for transactions. The most common types are credit cards and debit cards, although smart cards have been introduced. Bank cards are governed by an internationally recognized set of rules for the authorization of their use and the clearing and settlement of transactions.

Banker’s Draft –  A bill of exchange payable on demand and drawn by one bank on another. Regarded as being equivalent to cash, the draft cannot be returned unpaid.

Bank Guarantee – A commitment made by a bank to a foreign buyer that the bank will pay an exporter for goods shipped if the buyer defaults.

Bank Statement – A monthly statement of account which a bank renders to each of its depositors.

Bankruptcy – The condition of being unable to pay debts, with liabilities greater than assets.

Banner Advertising –  The use of rectangular advertisements or logos across the width of a page on a Web site.

Banner Exchange – An advertising program in which one merchant induces others to place his or her banners and buttons on their Web sites in return for similarly displaying theirs.

Bar Coding – The process of attaching a machine-readable code to a product, package, container, or sub-assembly, and using a scanner to relate its location to the product characteristics.

Barren Money – Money that is unproductive because it is not invested.

Benchmarking – Rating your company’s products, services and prac­tices against those of the front-runners in the industry.

Bearish – Relating to unfavorable business conditions or selling activity in anticipation of falling prices. (see Bullish)

Bear Market  – A market in which prices are falling and in which a dealer is more likely to sell securities than to buy them.

Bill of Entry – A statement of the nature and value of goods to be imported or exported, prepared by the shipper and presented to a customhouse.

Bill of Lading – A statement of the nature and value of goods being transported, especially by ship, along with the conditions applying to their transportation. Drawn up by the carrier, this document serves as a contract between the owner of the goods and the carrier.

Bill of Sale – Formal legal document that conveys title to or interest in specific property from the seller to the buyer.

Black market – An illegal market, usually for goods that are in short supply. Black market trading breaks government regulations or legislation and is particularly prevalent during times of shortage, such as rationing, or in industries that are very highly regulated, such as pharmaceuticals or armaments.

Blogs – web logs that are updated regularly, usually on a daily basis. They contain information related to a specific topic. In many cases, blogs are used simply as daily diaries about people’s personal lives, political views, or even as social commentaries. The truth of the matter is that blogs can be shaped into whatever you, the author, want them to be.

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Board of Directors – Those individuals selected to sit on an authoritative standing committee or governing body, taking responsibility for the management of an organization. Members of the board of directors are officially chosen by the shareholders, but in practice they are usually selected on the basis of the current board’s recommendations. The board usually includes major shareholders as well as directors of the company.

Board of Trustees – A committee or governing body that takes responsibility for managing, and holds in trust, funds, assets, or property belonging to others, for example, charitable or pension funds or assets.

Bookkeeping –  The process of recording business transactions into the accounting records. The “books” are the documents in which the records of transactions are kept.

Bottom Line – The figure that reflects company profitability on the income statement. The bottom line is the profit after all expenses and taxes have been paid.

Brand – A design, mark, symbol or other device that distinguishes one line or type of goods from those of a competitor.

Brand Name – A term, symbol, design or combination thereof that iden­tifies and differentiates a seller’s products or service.

Break-even –  The point of business activity when total revenue equals total expenses. Above the break-even point, the business is making a profit. Below the break-even point, the business is incurring a loss.

Budget – An estimate of the income and expenditures for a future period of time, usually one year.

Bullish –  Anticipating favorable business conditions. (see Bearish)

Bull Market – A market in which prices are rising and in which a dealer is more likely to be a buyer than a seller. (see Bear market)

Business Venture – Taking financial risks in a commercial enterprise.

Buyer’s Market –  A situation in which supply exceeds demand, prices are relatively low, and buyers therefore have an advantage.