This semester-long project provides an opportunity to demonstrate your business research skills, your financial acumen, and your understanding of how different business models, strategic and operating decisions, and accounting principles affect financial results. It integrates and compliments the work you do throughout the semester in the morning and afternoon sessions.
To begin this project, obtain the most recent annual report of a publicly owned manufacturing or merchandising company of your choice. If the company you work for fits this description, you can use its annual report.
Do not select a bank, insurance company, financial institution, public utility, not-for-profit, or other specialized company/organization, e.g., oil company, airline, etc. While you may work for a company in one of these sectors, they are not a good choice for an introductory graduate-level experience due to the impact of their operations on their financial reporting practices. As time permits throughout the semester, we will examine some of the differences between a manufacturing/merchandising company and these more specialized entities.
Your selected company must be approved by your instructor by Class 2.
Annual reports are available online by visiting the company's web site and/or by contacting the company's shareholder relations department. You can also obtain company, financial, and industry information from Mergent's Online and the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission).
Each session throughout the semester includes an Annual Report Analysis Project assignment. See your syllabus for details. These assignments help you create the data and information you will use to complete your final report. You should use a three-ring binder to store your assignments and organize your work as you complete it throughout the semester. You should also refer to industry resources used in your business planning activities to develop your understanding of the industry and the competition your selected company faces. Bring your binder and a printed copy of your report to class. Also upload an electronic copy of your report.. All supporting documents must be embedded within the final electronic report.
Context for Final Report:
You are a financial analyst in the research department at Gopher, Header, and Fink (GHF), a large brokerage firm.