Financial Statement Analysis: A Practitioner's Guide, 3rd Edition
Publisher: Wiley; 3 edition
Paperback: 396 pages
Data: March 15, 2002
Description: In Financial Statement Analysis: A Practitioner's Guide, Third Edition (New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2002), Martin Fridson and Fernando Alvarez detail a number of gimmicks that companies have employed, including:
* Booking deliveries of computer software to resellers as sales, despite undisclosed agreements permitting the return of unsold merchandise for refunds.
* Helping managers to achieve their annual sales targets by announcing a price increase, effective January 2, to induce customers to order before year-end, even though the hike puts the company out of line with the competition.
* Taking credit for volume-based rebates from suppliers before purchases of merchandise reach the level needed to qualify for the rebates.
Surprisingly, to many readers, the slipperiness depicted in Financial Statement Analysis is not limited to penny-stock companies or high-flying initial public offerings. A number of the book's case studies involve widely respected Fortune 500 corporations. The authors quote an official of one such company who freely admits that when a division is in danger of missing its quarterly profit goal, management tries to make an acquisition in the waning days so that it can count the unit?s earnings for the entire period.
Fridson and Alvarez do not merely describe and deplore opaque financial reporting practices. They document a number of cases in which analysts successfully anticipated stock and bond price shocks, using financial ratios and publicly available information from outside the statements. The authors also provide practical advice on making financial projections.
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