I worked in the Treasury Department of a domestic shipping in RP then. It was one of the best work that I ever had and very critical and risky too. I think, anything that involves money is very risky especially if it concerns large sum. Timing is everything. I remember eating lunch late most of the time because more often the financial market gets better and competitive in the middle of the day. I am talking of foreign exchange and interest (on loans and investments) rates.
Back then, we have to ring the banks that we do business to get the rates, then compare them and decide who got the better one. When the banks open (at 9AM) our telephone would then be tied up to monitor the market trend. It was tedious at the same time fun. The part that I don't really like was huggling for a higher CD rates or lower interest rate on loan. Our boss would set a margin and it was up to us to negotiate with the banker to get the desired rate. I learned how to bluff eventually. :)
Now adays, rates for these financial transactions are available on the internet. Emoneycentral.com has lists of banks that offers savings account, checking account andCD rates. You can view the rates up front per bank. No huggling needed, just your high financial acumen and guts.