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?) 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.