One of the most useful financial tools is the budget. A budget is a business plan expressed in financial terms. A budget can be drawn up for sales, costs or investment spending. Zurich Insurance Group uses a variety of budgets to assess performance and forecast for the future.

Many organisations have a budget for marketing activities. The Welsh government has recently cut its budget for promoting Wales to overseas visitors. It spent £1.5m raising the profile of Wales abroad in 2012-11, compared to £2.6m the year before (BBC, 13th January 2013).

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