Financial Times Guide to Using and Interpreting Company Accounts 2nd Ed.

Wendy McKenzie

Publisher: Pitman Publishing, 1998, 324 pages

ISBN: 0-273-63099-7

Keywords: Finance

Last modified: July 10, 2021, 5:48 p.m.

Reading and using company accounts are essential skills for any manager, entrepreneur or private investor. Yet most managers find analysing accounts a daunting prospect.

The Financial Times Guide to Using and Interpreting Accounts solves this problem by not only guiding you through the accounts but by also providing the tools to help you interpret them and make informed decisions.

The Financial Times Guide to Using and Interpreting Company Accounts answers these questions:

  • What information will I find in the accounts? Financial statements, what these statements tell you about the business and how they are prepared; the main differences between UK accounts and those prepared in other countries.
  • How do I analyse the accounts? Work through a full set of published accounts; learn how to approach and structure the analysis, which ratios to use, what the ratios do and do not tell you.
  • How can I use my analysis? How to analyse suppliers' accounts, customers' accounts, competitors' accounts and identify the acquisition potential of a company.

This book takes the subject of accounts into the advanced area of company analysis for those people who need more in-depth knowledge of a company's accounts before they make any major decisions regarding their involvement with that company.

Fully updated, it provides an understanding of the newer valuation analysis techniques, such as economic value-added and value-based management. It also provides an explanation of international accounting differences and standards, and 'creative' accounting proctices, showing you how to recognise and interpret these.

This book is essential reading for all non-financial managers who need to understand accounts and want to make more informed financial decisions.

  • Part 1: What Information Will I Find in the Accounts?
    1. Introduction to the accounts
      • Introduction
      • The Companies Act
      • The accounting rules
      • A Stock Exchange listing
      • Company size and ownership
      • The bases used to prepare accounts
      • The accounting principles
      • The accounts
      • Summary
    2. The profit and loss statement
      • Introduction
      • Capital costs and revenue costs
      • The items found in the profit and loss account
      • The format of the profit and loss account
      • The accounting judgements — defining the costs that relate to the sales
      • IMI's profit and loss account
    3. The balance sheet
      • Introduction
      • What is in a balance sheet?
      • The components of a balance sheet
      • Balance sheet formats
      • IMI's balance sheets
    4. The cash flow statement
      • Introduction
      • The construction of the cash flow statement
      • IMI's cash flow statement
    5. Statement of total recognised gains and losses
      • Introduction
      • Constructiong a statement of total recognised gains and losses
      • Reconciliation of movements in shareholders' funds
      • IMI's statement of total recognised gains and losses
    6. Note of historical cost profits and losses
      • Introduction
      • The construction of a note of historical cost profits and losses
      • IMI's note of historical cost profits and losses
    7. Other Information disclosed in the notes
      • Introduction
      • Segmental analysis
      • Accounting for pensions
      • Contingent liabilities
      • Capital commitments
      • Post Balance sheet events
      • Related party transactions
    8. Accounts in other countries
      • Introduction
      • United States of America
      • France
      • Germany
      • Japan
  • Part 2: How Do I Analyse the Accounts?
    1. Introduction
    2. Creative accounting
      • Introduction
      • Improving the reported profits
      • Improving the value of assets
      • Summary
    3. Solvency
      • Introduction
      • Long- and medium-term solvency
      • Short-term solvency
      • Immediate solvency/liquidity
      • IMI's solvency
    4. Profitability
      • Introduction
      • The return on capital employed
      • Improving the retrun on capital employed
      • The hierarchy of ratios
      • Profitability in IMI
    5. Cash management
      • Introduction
      • The operating and financial review
      • The cash flow statement
      • The working capital ratios
      • The loan profile
      • Cash management in IMI
    6. The investor's perspective
      • Introduction
      • The investment ratios
      • IMI's investment ratios
    7. IMI
      • Introduction
      • The accounts
      • The ratios
  • Part 3: How Can I Use My Analysis?
    1. Introduction
    2. Suppliers' accounts
      • Introduction
      • Relevant ratios
      • Summary
    3. Customers' accounts
      • Introduction
      • Relevant ratios
      • Summary
    4. Competitors' accounts
      • Introduction
      • Relevant ratios
      • Summary
    5. Identifying a company's acquisition potential
      • Introduction
      • Relevant ratios
      • Company valuation
      • Summary
    6. Availability of accounts
      • Introduction
      • Format of accounts filed at Companies House


Financial Times Guide to Using and Interpreting Company Accounts

Reviewed by Roland Buresund

Good ******* (7 out of 10)

Last modified: May 21, 2007, 3:04 a.m.

At last, a book for us idiots that are confused by different accounting systems (US, GB, FR, JP, DE, etc).


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