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Discover how to decipher financial reports
Especially relevant in today's world of corporate scandals and new accounting laws, the numbers in a financial report contain vitally important information about where a company has been and where it is going.
Packed with new and updated information, Reading Financial Reports For Dummies, 3rd Edition gives you a quick but clear introduction to financial reports–and how to decipher the information in them.
- New information on the separate accounting and financial reporting standards for private/small businesses versus public/large businesses
- New content to match SEC and other governmental regulatory changes
- New information about how the analyst-corporate connection has actually changed the playing field
- The impact of corporate communications and new technologies
- New examples that reflect current trends
- Updated websites and resources
Reading Financial Reports For Dummies is for investors, traders, brokers, managers, and anyone else who is looking for a reliable, up-to-date guide to reading financial reports effectively.
About the Author
Lita Epstein, MBA, helps people develop business and personal financial and investing skills. She designs and teaches online courses on bookkeeping, accounting, and starting a business. She is the author of more than 30 books, including Bookkeeping For Dummies and Trading For Dummies.
Table of Contents
Part I: Getting Started with Reading Financial Reports5
Chapter 1: Opening the Cornucopia of Reports 7
Chapter 2: Recognizing Business Types and Their Tax Rules 19
Chapter 3: Public or Private: How Company Structure Affects theBooks 27
Chapter 4: Digging into Accounting Basics 41
Part II: Checking Out the Big Show: Annual Reports 57
Chapter 5: Exploring the Anatomy of an Annual Report 59
Chapter 6: Balancing Assets against Liabilities and Equity73
Chapter 7: Using the Income Statement 89
Chapter 8: The Statement of Cash Flows 105
Chapter 9: Scouring the Notes to the Financial Statements119
Chapter 10: Considering Consolidated Financial Statements137
Part III: Analyzing the Numbers 149
Chapter 11: Testing the Profits and Market Value 151
Chapter 12: Looking at Liquidity 169
Chapter 13: Making Sure the Company Has Cash to Carry On 179
Part IV: Understanding How Companies Optimize Operations191
Chapter 14: How Reports Help with Basic Budgeting 193
Chapter 15: Turning Up Clues in Turnover and Assets 203
Chapter 16: Examining Cash Inflow and Outflow 215
Chapter 17: How Companies Keep the Cash Flowing 225
Part V: The Many Ways Companies Answer to Others 233
Chapter 18: Finding Out How Companies Find Errors: The AuditingProcess 235
Chapter 19: Digging into Government Regulations 245
Chapter 20: Creating a Global Financial Reporting Standard257
Chapter 21: Checking Out the Analyst–CorporationConnection 267
Chapter 22: How Companies Communicate with Shareholders 279
Chapter 23: Keeping Score When Companies Play Games with Numbers293
Part VI: The Part of Tens 315
Chapter 24: Ten (+1) Financial Scandals That Rocked the World317
Chapter 25: Ten Signs That a Company’s in Trouble 327
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
One of the things I don't like about the "dummies" books is that frequently, in order to be politically correct, they will automatically seek out a woman to write the book instead of just seeking out the most qualified person they can find. From reading the "about the author" section in the book, it appears that she doesn't have very much actual work experience in the field of corporate finance. "After receiving her MBA, she managed finances for a small nonprofit organization and the facilities management section of a large medical clinic." That's all? The rest of her resume contains some impressive jobs, but none of them are directly related to studying financial statements. Surely there must be at least a thousand people out there that are more qualified to write this book. The author's lack of real world experience in this specific field makes me question the integrity of the information contained in the book. I'm not saying that it's all wrong, I just don't completely trust it. Having said that, I'll finish this review by quoting my favorite passage from the book, on page 105: "The calculation for earnings per share is relatively simple. You take the number of outstanding shares and divide it by the net earnings." Oops! Actually, to calculate earnings per share, you take net earnings and divide it by the number of outstanding shares. I guess it's not so simple after all!
I am reading this book to prepare myself for a Managerial Accounting course. It is a great primer for anyone who would like to become familiar with the terminology and jargon associated with managerial accounting. The error noted by the "Anonymous" reviewer from 2009 (The page 105 calculation of earnings per share) does not exist in the 2013 version of the book.
AN EXCELLENT TOOL. CONCISE AND WELL ORGANIZED. WILL PROBABLY USE THIS TOOL FOR YEARS. THE AUTHOR'S BEST FEATURE WAS EXPLAINING THE OUTCOME OR MEASUREMENT IN UNDERSTANDABLE REAL WORLD TERMS. ALLOWED ME TO CONSTRUCT A UNIVERSAL SPREADSHEET FOR ANALYSIS OF ANY PUBLIC COMPANY'S FINANCIAL CONDITION IN JUST MINUTES WITHOUT A LOT OF STRESS. REALLY HELPS TO SHINE A LIGHT IN THE CORNERS SO I CAN COMPARE TWO UNRELATED ENTITIES AND WEITGH THE STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES. MOST BOOKS OF THIS TYPES ARE FILLED WITH TOO MUCH UNUSABLE TECHNICAL DETAIL.
This book came as a total surprise to me. I did not expect the level of detail, and the simplicity with which things were explained.
I must warn you that I bought this book 3 days ago, and now at chapter 12 - Liquidity, can be quite a brain drain.
Using real world Statements on Yahoo along with this book makes it a good read for every one who understands stock markets but lacking the details.