What is a financial statement? In layman’s term, financial statement shows you where a company’s money came from, where it went and where it is now. Reading a financial statement can be hard to some people but once you learned the basics of financial statement, it will be easy just like reading an electricity, credit card bill or bank statement of account.
In reality, it is not complicated. You can understand financial statement of a company since you know how to read a billing statement of a bank account or from utility companies. It only requires little perseverance when you want to know the basic of financial statement.
So the question is: Why do you need to study financial statement? A financial statement is a documentation of the company’s financial status or condition. It is very helpful for an investor because it will determine if a company is a good investment or not.
A financial statement will give you the financial information about the company such as its liabilities, earnings, cash flows and assets. It is an important tool to determine if the company is increasing its earnings or losing money and it can be simply understand by the readers. It is a simple report which is usually in tabulated form.
A financial statement can be divided into four parts: balance sheets, income statements, statements of shareholder’s equity and cash flow statements. Balance sheets give details what are company’s liabilities and assets in a particular period. Income statement, on the other hand, shows how the company’s revenue is transformed into the net income.
In a financial statement, a cash flow statement details how cash comes in and out in the balance sheet and income of the company and shows the investing and financing activities of the company. The fourth part is the statement of shareholder’s equity that gives the changes on the company’s shareholders over the time.
In conclusion, a financial statement is a good tool to evaluate the profitability of a company when someone want to buy its stock. It details the performance of the company and gives the present condition of the company’s financial status.