FSA Course Project Acc 1101 Fall, 1999 Dr. West

FSA Course Project
Acc 1101
Fall, 1999
Dr. West
Each student will choose a publicly traded U.S. company and prepare reports based on the instructions
given below. Each student will complete the first two parts individually, and the last part will be a
group submission. Accordingly, students will first form groups comprising three members. Next, each group
will choose an industry it would like to analyze. Finally, each member of the group will pick a company
within the chosen industry. To make your projects interesting, you are urged to pick companies that have
been in the news lately. The following is a list of industries you may choose from, and a sample of
companies within each industry. The sample of companies is not meant to be exhaustive; you may choose a
company outside this list, as long as you obtain the approval of your instructor.
Industry (table did not translate properly, sorry)
Sample Companies (pick the companies and industries you want)
Apparel and Shoes
Nike, Reebok, Timberland
Black and Decker, Maytag, Sunbeam, Whirlpool
Computers-Major Systems
Hewlett-Packard; Compaq; IBM; NEC; Dell; Apple
Delta, USAir, Southwest, Northwest
Food Distributors- Supermarkets
American Stores, Food Lion, Giant Food, Kroger, Safeway
Food, Drink & Tobacco-Processors
Campbell Soup, General Mills, Kellogg, Quaker Oats,
Food Distributors-Restaurant Chains
McDonald's, Shoney's, Wendy's, Bob Evans
Union Carbide, Dow Chem, Dupont, Monsanto, Hercules
Pfizer, Merck, Eli Lily, J&J, Smithkline Beecham
Retailing-Department Stores
Sears, JC Penney, Neiman Marcus
AT&T, Lucent Tech, Motorola, Bell Atlantic
Standard Register, Wallace, Reynolds & Reynolds, Moore
Each group in a class will analyze one industry only, and no two students can choose the same company.
Therefore, industries will be assigned on a first-come-first-serve basis. Once you have formed your
group, decide which industry you would like to analyze. Submit the following to your instructor: (a) the
names of your group members (b) the industry you have chosen, and (c) a second
preference for an industry in case your first choice has been taken by a different group. The deadline for
submission of group members and choice of industry is 9/1/99. Once each group has been assigned an
industry, each group member will pick a company within that industry. The deadline for this submission is
Once your instructor has approved your choice of a company, you will be required to research the company
following a series of assignments. The authors of your text provide hot links on their homepage to help you
locate information (http://www/swcollege.com/ingram.html)
In completing the assignments, each student will:
1) obtain the most recent annual report of your company, including its financial statements and the notes to
the financial statements. You will examine the annual report to determine the major financing, investing,
and operating activities.
2) locate recent articles that have been written about your company and search the literature to determine
information about the economic, social, legal, and political environment of your company and its
industry. Articles detailing financing, investing, and operating activities are important
3) work with other members of your group to determine how the performance of their companies compare
with that of your company.
Part I Introduction (Due date: 10/1)
Prepare a report providing basic information about your company. Your report should be two to three pages
long, excluding tables or other exhibits (of course, save a copy to your hard drive). Some basic
information you should include is:
(1) The name of your company;
(2) Its top management. (Who is the CEO? CFO)
(3) The state in which it is incorporated and date incorporated
(4) Nature of the business. (What does it produce? What industry does it belong to? What is its SIC
(5) Stock market where its stock is traded
(6) Name of its auditors
(7) A brief summary of the format of the Annual Report. (How many sections does it have and what do
each of these sections cover?)
(8) A brief summary of its financial statements. (Does the report contain four statements? What are they
called? Does the company provide detailed (e.g. classified) balance sheets and income statements? Is
the statement of cash flows prepared using the direct or indirect method? How many years comparative
information is provided in its financial statements? When is its financial year-end? How many notes
are provided for the financial statements?)
(9) Include a Word table summarizing the highlights of the financial statements. Include total assets, total
liabilities, total sales revenue, and net income.
Part II Recent Articles (Due Date: 11/1)
Prepare a report providing a review of the recent literature that has been written about your company and its
industry. Your report should be two to three pages long, excluding tables or other exhibits and include at
least one article each on a financing activity (borrow or repay), investing activity (build a new plant, open a
new office abroad, introduce a new product line), and operating activity (anything but financing and
investing). Operating activity does not necessarily make a big splash unless your company has had major
layoffs (restructuring), introduced a killer new product, or perhaps put in a new computer system.
Part III Comparative trends (Group submission, Due Date: 12/1 or 12/13)
Financial Statement Analysis: Prepare a report containing a comparative analysis of your three companies,
assessing their (1) liquidity, (2) profitability and stock performance, (3) solvency, and (4)
cash flows. This report should be about 2 pages long, excluding tables or exhibits. Use Excel to compute at
least ten ratios. Which of the companies do you like best based on your analyses? Why?
More guidance and information will be provided as needed throughout the semester. Good Luck.