Cover image for How to read a financial report : wringing vital signs out of the numbers
How to read a financial report : wringing vital signs out of the numbers
Tracy, John A.
Personal Author:
Fifth edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Wiley, [1999]

Physical Description:
184 pages : illustrations ; 18 x 26 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Subject Term:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
HF5681.B2 T733 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
HF5681.B2 T733 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

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Lurking somewhere amidst all the figures in a financial report is vitally important information about where a company has been and where it is headed. But without a guide to isolate and interpret those numbers, the dizzying array of columns and rows doesn't add up to a hill of beans. That's why thousands of professionals and savvy individuals have referred to this bestselling resource that shows anyone how to make sense of all those numbers. Updated throughout, this edition features new information on tax reform, depreciation methods, spotting fraudulent reporting, and recent FASB rulings. Also, all exhibits have been made easier to follow.

"If you would like to have a minimal understanding of the numbers that make up a balance sheet, income, and cash flow statement . . . then How to Read a Financial Report might be just what you are looking for. Mr. Tracy's book explains in plain English the meaning of the major terms used in financial statements."
- The Wall Street Journal

"What distinguishes Tracy's efforts from other manuals is an innovative structure that visually ties together elements of the balance sheet and income statement by tracing where and how a line item in one affects an entry in another."
- Inc. magazine

"An excellent job of showing how to separate the wheat from the chaff without choking in the process."
- Miami Herald

"A wonderful book-organized logically and written clearly. For a Fool to be an effective investor, she has to know her way around a financial statement. This book will help you develop that skill. It's the clearest presentation of many accounting concepts that this Fool has seen."
-Selena Maranjian, The Motley Fool

Author Notes

John A. Tracy is an award-winning professor of accounting at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is also the author of The Fast Forward MBA in Finance.

Table of Contents

1 Starting with Cash Flowsp. 1
2 Introducing the Balance Sheet and Income Statementp. 7
3 Profit Isn't Everythingp. 15
4 Sales Revenue and Accounts Receivablep. 21
5 Cost of Goods Sold Expense and Inventoryp. 27
6 Inventory and Accounts Payablep. 33
7 Operating Expenses and Accounts Payablep. 37
8 Operating Expenses and Prepaid Expensesp. 41
9 Fixed Assets, Depreciation Expense, and Accumulated Depreciationp. 45
10 Accruing Unpaid Operating Expenses and Interest Expensep. 53
11 Income Tax Expense and Income Tax Payablep. 59
12 Net Income and Retained Earnings; Earnings Per Share (EPS)p. 63
13 Cash Flow from Profitp. 67
14 Cash Flows from Investing and Financing Activitiesp. 73
15 Growth, Decline, and Cash Flowp. 77
16 Footnotes--The Fine Print in Financial Reportsp. 87
17 The Cost of Credibility--Audits by CPAsp. 95
18 Accounting Methods and Quality of Earningsp. 109
19 Making and Changing the Rulesp. 117
20 Cost of Goods Sold Conundrump. 127
21 Depreciation Dilemmasp. 139
22 Ratios for Creditors and Investorsp. 147
23 A Look Inside Management Accountingp. 161
24 A Few Parting Commentsp. 171
Indexp. 181