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It’s a final paper for Financial Concepts, which may use both accounting and finance knowledge.
Company paper analysis: Using the analytical tools each of you will learn, each student will prepare an analysis of a public company. The company will be evaluated from the perspective of both fixed income securities (e.g., would you buy the bonds in the medium to long-term?) and equity securities (e.g., would you buy or sell the stock in the medium to long-term?).
Approaches to the analysis should include:
⎫ Current state of the financial health of the company
⎫ Trends in the financial health over recent years and potentially into the future
⎫ Comparison of the subject company with competitors and/or industry sector
⎫ Analysis of the subject company’s industry sector
o Relative strengths or weaknesses
o Factors affecting the industry such as product, technical innovation, regulation, economic cycles, etc.
⎫ Assessing the company’s position within the industry context
o Is it a leader?
o Does it have a clear advantage vis a vis other industry participants?
o Is it subject to extreme competition or pricing pressure?
The company chosen is at your discretion, but should not be so complex or one for which the information is not readily available that makes it more difficult than necessary. Students should pick a subject company outside his/her usual frame of reference. For example, if a student is employed in the technology sector, he/she should choose a company in another industry, such as food. In my experience, retail companies make the best selection.
The company paper analysis should not exceed 8 to 10 pages, double spaced using font 12 or 14. The page limit does not include the cover page and exhibits. Please number each page.
The company paper analysis is to be prepared using the APA writing style and guideline for references format. The paper must contain a bibliography and all direct quotations and data sources must be properly cited. The Department uses the APA style as it lends itself well to both reading the paper and understanding references without being cumbersome as some other styles. Students can download the student style guide from the American Psychological Association website http://www.apastyle.org/elecref.html or you can purchase the APA style guide from the Bookstore. There is even a help disk that can be purchased that will step the student through the process as you write your paper, if you desire a more “personal assistance”.
PS, I’d like to choose Zara or Walmart, some companies like these.