Financial reporting provides a window into the operational and financial workings of a company. However, translating this information into actionable insights is anything but straightforward. It requires an understanding of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), the quality of financial information, and the adjustments and analyses required to accurately measure and evaluate profitability, exposures, growth prospects, and value.
The course starts with a review of financial reporting and then focuses on various modules of fundamental analysis, including performance evaluation, risk assessment, forecasting, and valuation (this is the “Fundamental Analysis” part of the course; for a detailed outline, please see topics 1 through 4 in Section VII below). The second part of the course is devoted to a systematic study of GAAP, earnings quality, and related analyses, utilizing many actual financial disclosures and cases of accounting abuses (this is the “Earnings Quality” part of the course; for a detailed outline, please see topic 5 in Section VII below).
While the course covers the theoretical underpinning of the various analyses, it focuses on implementation and practical uses. Many real-world examples will be analyzed, including using Excel tools that will be provided to the students.
The primary objective of the course is to acquire a deep understanding of accounting information and how to intelligently use it in making investment, credit, and similar resource allocation decisions. Such knowledge is required of executives, consultants, bankers, analysts, investment managers, and other users of financial information.
Ernst & Young Professor of Accounting & Finance
Professor Nissim earned his PhD in Accounting at the University of California, Berkeley, and joined Columbia Business School in 1997. He was granted tenure in 2005, and full professorship in 2007. He served as the Chair of the Accounting Division during the years 2006–2009 and 2014–2016.
Professor Nissim’s research is primarily in the areas of earnings quality, fundamental analysis, equity valuation, financial institutions...