None This course provides a detailed examination of the fundamental elements on which computers are based. Topics include number systems and computation, electricity and basic circuits, logic circuits, memory, computer architecture, and operating systems.
Magazine Financial Statement Analysis: This process of reviewing the financial statements allows for better economic decision making. Globally, publicly listed companies are required by law to file their financial statements with the relevant authorities. For example, publicly listed firms in America are required to submit their financial statements to the Securities and Exchange Commission SEC.
Firms are also obligated to provide their financial statements in the annual report that they share with their stakeholders. As financial statements are prepared in order to meet requirements, the second step in the process is to analyze them effectively so that future profitability and cash flows can be forecasted.
Therefore, the main purpose of financial statement analysis is to utilize information about the past performance of the company in order to predict how it will fare in the future.
Another important purpose of the analysis of financial statements is to identify potential problem areas and troubleshoot those. These can be classified into internal and external users. Internal users refer to the management of the company who analyzes financial statements in order to make decisions related to the operations of the company.
On the other hand, external users do not necessarily belong to the company but still hold some sort of financial interest.
These include owners, investors, creditors, government, employees, customers, and the general public. These users are elaborated on below: Management The managers of the company use their financial statement analysis to make intelligent decisions about their performance. For instance, they may gauge cost per distribution channel, or how much cash they have left, from their accounting reports and make decisions from these analysis results.
Owners Small business owners need financial information from their operations to determine whether the business is profitable. It helps in making decisions like whether to continue operating the business, whether to improve business strategies or whether to give up on the business altogether.
Investors People who have purchased stock or shares in a company need financial information to analyze the way the company is performing. They use financial statement analysis to determine what to do with their investments in the company. So depending on how the company is doing, they will either hold onto their stock, sell it or buy more.
Creditors Creditors are interested in knowing if a company will be able to honor its payments as they become due. Government Governing and regulating bodies of the state look at financial statement analysis to determine how the economy is performing in general so they can plan their financial and industrial policies.
Employees Employees need to know if their employment is secure and if there is a possibility of a pay raise. Customers Customers need to know about the ability of the company to service its clients into the future. They may wish to evaluate the effects of the firm on the environment, or the economy or even the local community.
For instance, if the company is running corporate social responsibility programs for improving the community, the public may want to be aware of the future operations of the company.
These are explained below along with the advantages and disadvantages of each method. Horizontal Analysis Horizontal analysis is the comparison of financial information of a company with historical financial information of the same company over a number of reporting periods.
It could also be based on the ratios derived from the financial information over the same time span. The main purpose is to see if the numbers are high or low in comparison to past records, which may be used to investigate any causes for concern. For example, certain expenditures that are high currently, but were well under budget in previous years may cause the management to investigate the cause for the rise in costs; it may be due to switching suppliers or using better quality raw material.
This method of analysis is simply grouping together all information, sorting them by time period: This analysis is also called dynamic analysis or trend analysis. A disadvantage of horizontal analysis is that the aggregated information expressed in the financial statements may have changed over time and therefore will cause variances to creep up when account balances are compared across periods.
Horizontal analysis can also be used to misrepresent results. It can be manipulated to show comparisons across periods which would make the results appear stellar for the company. For instance, if the profits for this month are only compared with those of last month, they may appear outstanding but that may not be the case if compared with the same month the previous year.
Using consistent comparison periods can address this problem. Vertical Analysis Vertical analysis is conducted on financial statements for a single time period only. Each item in the statement is shown as a base figure of another item in the statement, for a given time period, usually for year.
Typically, this analysis means that every item on an income and loss statement is expressed as a percentage of gross sales, while every item on a balance sheet is expressed as a percentage of total assets held by the firm. Vertical analysis is also called static analysis because it is carried out for a single time period.The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University houses writing resources and instructional material, and we provide these as a free service of the Writing Lab at Purdue.
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