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Financial Information Retrieval and Analyzing Financial Data

Financial Information Retrieval and Analyzing Financial Data (45 points)
This assignment will be graded on both content and writing ability.  A writing specialist will analyze the writing component of this assignment.  Grades less than “highly competent” will be returned to you for editing and resubmission prior to my recording the grade earned based on your first submission.

Internet Search and Data Gathering Instructions
A.    All public companies are now required to file reports electronically with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These reports are submitted in ASCII format and are available on the SEC’s Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval System (EDGAR).

B.    Find the SIC code of a particular entity in your assigned industry by using the EDGAR site.  There is a button on the main page that is labeled SIC Codes.  An alternative search site is available athttp://www.osha.gov/pls/imis/sicsearch.html.A complete listing on one page can be found at: http://www.sec.gov/info/edgar/siccodes.htm.  Note the “mega” classifications are provided below.  For example, if you have been assigned the healthcare industry, you will consider the various types of entities in the services mega classification (7000-8999) that are related to healthcare (8000-8099).

0000-1999:  Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, and Mining
2000-3999:  Manufacturing
4000-4999:  Transportation, Communication, Utilities
5000-5999:  Wholesale and Retail Trade
6000-6999:  Finance, Insurance and Real Estate
7000-8999:  Services

If you have been assigned the not for profit “industry” or a government organization (i.e., Fairfax County Government), you may choose another industry that is traded on the stock exchanges for this assignment only and continue with the assignment as prepared.

C.    Return to the home page of EDGAR.  Click the button to search for company filings and search by the SIC code you have chosen.  You will be provided a list of companies.  Choose one company you are interested in analyzing.  Search for the company’s most recent 10K filing (annual report).  Briefly review the information provided in the 10K, taking note of the business description.  Another useful site for retrieving SEC filings by SIC code is: www.secinfo.com.  Experiment!

D.    Go tohttp://www.msn.com/en-us/money.   This website uses the information in the EDGAR databases.  Enter the company’s name in the “get quote” form field.  Scroll down to the bottom of the page and choose “Financial Statements.” Print out the 5-year income statement.

E.    Using the EDGAR database (either SEC information site) choose a competitor in the same industry. Review the competitor’s 3- or 5-year income statement from money.msn.comor www.finance.yahoo.com. You will be required to submit a screenshot of the income statement as part of the requirements (see below).

F.    Go to www.finance.yahoo.com.  Again, use your company’s name or ticker symbol in the form field. Locate on the site where you can find information on the industry averages for your company.  Print out this page.
1.    A two page typewritten report about your findings.  This will include a description of the company and a financial analysis of the company compared to its competitor and the industry as a whole.  In particular:

a)    Briefly describe the major industries in which the company operates, including the SIC codes and the major products or services offered by the company.

b)    Financial analysis that describes the operating performance and financial health/risk of your company and the major strengths and weaknesses of the company relative to its competitor and the industry using the financial ratios and earnings forecasts provided in your search.

c)    Finally, discuss why you would or would not invest in your company.

2.    You will upload your report file to Bb using Safe Assign by the due date for the assignment.  A link will be provided to you in the Learning Module and the Assignments folder.

3.    Also upload a screenshotof the 5-year or 3-yearincome statement of your company and a competitor from http://www.msn.com/en-us/moneyor www.finance.yahoo.com(the screenshot will contain only a few of the financial statement items, but should include total revenue) and a printout of the industry statistics/averages from www.finance.yahoo.com (these should include some of the ratios discussed in your paper)Note: it is o.k. to use other sources than the ones suggested as long as these sources also provide multi-year summaries and industry ratios/averages. If you use other sources than the ones provided above, please include a citation. Otherwise, you do not need to cite.

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