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Weekly Bulletin No. 845

Tuesday 12th January

Vulnerable Period Heading

System Availability - Thursday 21stJanuary

The CUFS system will be unavailable during the vulnerable period of 6am to 9am on Thursday 21st January

This time will be used for system maintenance.

Issued by Lesley Dent - System Administrator


Marketplace heading

Cognos Grants Reports - NEW report

A New Cognos report, Grants: Expenditure Enquiry, can be found in the Departmental (Shared) Reports folder for your School.  This report has a variety of optional fields, allowing users to customise the output to suit their requirements.  Using this report you should be able to reproduce any of the outputs from the following 15 reports and the report has been designed to eventually replace all of these:

  • Detailed commitment Enquiry
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by multiple project organisations
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by Project
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by Project Organisation v2
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by project with commitments
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by project with commitments 2
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by project with commitments 2 JP
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by project with commitments 2 with PO number
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by Project with Currency
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by Project with invoice number
  • Detailed Expenditure Enquiry by Project with PO number
  • Expenditure Detail Enquiry by Project Organisation
  • Expenditure Enquiry by Project Organisation
  • Expenditure report by project org by task no by date range by transaction type by status
  • R12 test Expenditure report by project org by task no by date range by transaction type by status v2

The report is intended for use by departments, schools, Central Finance and the Research Office. It uses the standard security model, restricting returned information to only the Projects and Awards the user has been granted access to. 

Training instructions for the report can be accessed here

We would encourage users to set up report views, with pre-set parameter choices for reports that are regularly used, to save time and replicate the report layout they desire:

Creating a Report View click here

We are looking for user feedback to help steer any improvements to this report in the right direction.

Issued by Leisa Broad - Financial Reporting Developer


Brexit heading

Brexit Transition guidance

As we clarify the revised rules and processes for trading with those in the EU following the end of the transition period we will continue to update our guidance on the Finance Division website at

This includes initial guidance on where to look for further information on some of the procedural elements and information required for Customs declarations and licences/certificates for controlled goods.  

This is very much a work in-progress so if you are unable to find an answer to your query please contact either the University Tax Team at  or the UFS helpdesk in the first instance.


Customs agents for imports and exports of goods

As highlighted in last week’s bulletin there are now a number of new rules and complexities for both imports and exports of goods between the UK and the EU (and between Great Britain and Northern Ireland). This will inevitably take more time to arrange as both ourselves, suppliers, agents and transporters adjust to the new procedures.

It is possible that you may experience an increase in agents fees and taxes, particularly if all the correct documentation is not provided in advance of the goods’ movement. Therefore, please ensure that you appoint an agent as early as possible in the process, as they themselves are experiencing an increase in demand.

Additional guidance and links to approved agents are available at


What to do if your goods are stuck at the border.

We have produced a summary guidance, available here, on the questions to ask, who to approach for help and how to organise payments to release goods that are held up at the border. We would be grateful if you could bring it to the attention to those in your department who are involved with any imports.


Services to overseas customers – VAT rate flowchart

The Free Trade Agreement focuses on the movement of goods between the UK and the EU. This means that the supply of services to customers in the EU now follow the same rules as those that previously applied to the services applied to customers in countries in the ‘rest of the world’. A  flowchart has been produced to assist you with establishing which VAT rate to charge on any such services supplied from the 1st Jan 21.

Some areas are more complex than others, so please do not hesitate to contact the University’s Tax Team  at if you require further assistance.

Issued by Karen Sheldon - Finance Training


General Finance heading

Fixed Assets Half Year End review Jan-21

With regards to the Half Year End review of Departmental Fixed Asset Registers, we have decided that owing to current work pressures caused by the third national lockdown that this review will not be compulsory.
If Departments do have resource at this time and wish to conduct their review as normal then they can. Departments are able to run their own Fixed Assets Register report from the Fixed Assets module in CUFS but if anyone requires any assistance, please contact the Fixed Assets helpdesk who will be happy to advise.
We fully intend to carry out the Year End review as at the end of Jun-21 so all changes are made before the Jul-21 period is closed.
Issued by David Cook - Central and Research Accounting


Cambridge University Endowment Fund – Notification of changes to terms

Late last year investors were able to meet Tilly Franklin as incoming CIO, and heard of the plans to start to move the asset allocation of the fund further towards illiquid assets in order to optimize the fund’s long term return prospects. At the same time the redemption terms of the fund were to be aligned more closely with the nature of the underlying assets, so that investors’ expectations of liquidity could be reliably met without impairing the performance experienced by other investors.
Changes impacting Departments
Quarterly process - valuations
The fund receives quarterly rather than monthly reports from many of its illiquid assets, and so is better able to provide accurate valuations on a quarterly cycle rather than on a monthly cycle. Accuracy is important to ensure that the correct number of units are created for additions/purchases and cancelled for withdrawals/sales, without unintended dilution effects for other investors. In respect of March and June 2020, market movements had such a significant effect that the Valuation Committee corrected the preliminary unit valuation in retrospect, and a second review has been introduced for all subsequent quarters until the new quarterly cycle can be introduced in 2021. In the quarterly cycle, the unit value will be determined during the third month of the quarter, for example the December 2020 unit price will be issued during the end of March 2021.
Quarterly process – payment of distributions
When the CUEF was created to succeed the former Amalgamated Fund, investor distributions started to be made monthly rather than quarterly. Following the change to a quarterly valuation process it will be necessary to reverse this change, in order to avoid incurring substantial extra administration as well as to avoid the need to recoup overpaid monthly distributions from investors in certain circumstances. The total amount to be paid out in any year will remain the same; there will be no change in the process by which the distribution amount per unit is recalculated annually. After December 2020 distributions will be paid to investors quarterly in arrears, rather than monthly in arrears as at present. The last monthly payment of distribution will be for the month of December 2020. The first quarterly payment of distribution will be for the quarter ended March 2021. A 1 month income accrual to 31 July will be processed by Central Finance during the year end period.
Restrictions on withdrawals
New restrictions will be introduced after the end of June 2021 on an Investor basis.
  • Until the end of June 2026, the restrictions will operate on a cumulative basis
  • After the end of June 2026, the restrictions will operate on an annual percentage basis if they would exceed a permitted withdrawal of £10 million per year
These arrangements are available in more detail, however it is important to note that the CUEF investor base is made up of internal University departmental holdings on eligible sources of funds and external Colleges and Trusts for whom these changes will be more relevant. The University acts as overarching investor over all sub-accounts/departmental accounts as is able to largely absorb most of the changes to withdrawals at the top e.g. net subscriptions and withdrawals, as well as centrally manage the cash inflow from distributions, therefore Departments will not see many of these changes directly.
Departmental Key Contacts may wish to feed this information onto Trust Fund Managers. The updated Information Memorandum can be provided upon request.
Queries: Any queries should be addressed to, Treasury & Investments, Finance Division
Issued by Scott Maclaren - Treasury & Investments


UFS  Audit - Reports issued

The UFS user audit reports were burst to Key Contacts on Monday 11th January. These should be reveiwed and returned  by Thursday 28th January, 14 working days after issue.

Any additional access or raise in purchasing positions should be requested using the online forms as normal.

Audit overview

Issued by Lesley Dent - System Administrator


Training header

Forthcoming course (via Teams)

An overview of the basics of VAT and how it applies to the University. Please note that there is an hour long video that must be watched prior to the live session. Although the target audience is departmental staff, ROO staff are welcome to sign up too, but should be aware that the focus will not be on Research contracts.
GL2: Reporting in the GL, Tue 26 & Thu 28 Jan
Generate and discuss the standard reports required for monitoring department finances. Common items and watch points are also covered.
GM2: Grants Reporting in Cognos, Wed 27 & Thu 28 Jan
Using Cognos to run Grants Reports. Setting up and manipulating the two new consolidated reports is included in this course.

Issued by Christine Rogerson - Finance Training


FAQ heading

Supplier Database - Browsers

We would like to remind users that the Supplier Database no longer works with Internet Explorer.

Issued by Paul Humphreys - Functional Analyst


Monthly Accounting Timetable

To view the status of the monthly process including the month end close dates please use the following link: Accounting Timetable


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Vulnerable Periods

Some systems may be unavailable between 6.00am to 9.00am Tuesdays and Thursdays. Users will be notified of planned vulnerable periods here and in the latest bulletin.