Financial Statements: Economic Analysis and Interpretation

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9781845780111: Financial Statements: Economic Analysis and Interpretation
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Financial Statements explains the logic of financial statements and how we use them to analyse companies in economic terms. Its approach is very different to existing books on financial statements, bringing a remarkable amount of order and simplicity to what can appear a complex subject. The book covers a number of issues that have had little attention before, including the analysis of growth, how business model innovation is affecting reported financial performance, the effect of the company's accounting model on its reported cash flow and the vulnerability of measures such as EBITDA. The book examines the main problem areas in accounting: where balance sheets are frequently incomplete, the treatment of intangible assets, the techniques of 'off-balance-sheet financing', how assets and liabilities are valued in balance sheets and the tension in GAAP between historic cost and current or 'fair' value accounting. The book contains a concise review of the two dominant accounting systems: US GAAP, or Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, and IFRS. It explains how GAAP is evolving, and the impact of the financial crisis. The book examines the ways in which companies present their income numbers to achieve a favourable look, why companies fail and the detection of creative accounting. This book is essential reading for practitioners and students, and for anyone who wants to use and understand financial statements.

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About the Author:

Chris Higson works at London Business School, where he was the chair of the accounting faculty. He has advised many of the world's leading industrial and financial companies. He also advises government and not-for-profit organisations and is a member of the UK's Industrial Development Advisory Board. Chris publishes extensively on the financial performance and valuation of companies, and on accounting policy and financial governance. He regularly comments on television, radio and in the international press on these issues.

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