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Financial Statements: A Step-by-step Guide to Understanding and Creating Financial Reports

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  929 ratings  ·  59 reviews
Explains how to read the three basic types of financial statements--the balance sheet, the income statement, and the cash flow--and uses this foundation to explain the flow of cash and product.
Paperback, 223 pages
Published June 11th 1998 by Career Press (first published January 31st 1998)
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Average rating 4.13  · 
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Oct 14, 2012 rated it really liked it

It is not easy to write an accounting book. A lot of accounting books are written for accountants which might makes a lot of sense however a large business audience may be left behind.

Mr. Ittelson does a decent job of balancing the explanation of accounting principles and the details behind these principles without getting into too many minute details as happen in other accounting books.

In the book first section, Mr. Ittelson starts with explaining the 3 accounting statements, each with its own
Mohamed Almahdi
I have read this book because I am in a process of educating myself about the current financial system governing this world. The outcome of this education process might directly or indirectly benefit me in my career or in my life decisions.
Life has become very complex. To guarantee a chance of having a decent life in this complexity it has become required to understand the complex tools that is embedded in this complex system. Similarly to modern computers, what we experience in this life is the
Alaeddin Hallak
I loved how it ties all basics you need to know about accounting, valuation, and capital budgeting into one concrete case study. I came out with a lot more confidence in understanding company's fundamentals through its financial statements, and this will help immensely in value investing. ...more
Aug 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: business
I have had a serious difficulty to understand the way financial statement is constructed and how different elements are connected to one another in it. After reading through this book, now everything is clear to me. Every element in a financial statement is perfectly explained based on the vivid examples by author, which ease the comprehension process of the whole concept into you.
Sinh Tài
Apr 12, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
Great for non-finance types who want an interesting and applicable approach to financial reporting without going into details as in Accounting 101 classes. You get to understand the concepts of financial reporting, how the 3 statements are connected and most importantly what all the numbers and jargon really mean to a business. All are delivered in simple language with a good sense of humor of the author.

Also great for finance types who want a quick but thorough revision of financial reporting.

Fengyang Song
Feb 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The best book I have read in explaining very clearly what each line item on the financial statements mean. For example, how do they link to one another, and most importantly, how do we interpret these numbers.

Reading this book back to front was a joy, and this speaks volumes on a traditional dry topic for most people.
Nov 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: economics
Finance, Biology and neuro sciences are the very definition of the dry subjects in my opinion. One cannot read a line or two on these subjects without stumbling upon some obscure jargon, making them quite inaccessible for the layman.
So when I picked up this book I was first dismayed by its volume as I thought that it was going to be those books which I pick but never finish.
But I was amazed, as the author took us on the journey to prepare all the three statements of a company from scratch. Pages
Sep 12, 2020 rated it liked it
1. For a non-finance person, this book will serve well.
2. For a finance professional, it's not very impactful. Instead the following books can be read:

Financial Shenanigans How to Detect Accounting Gimmicks & Fraud in Financial Reports by Howard Schilit

A Manager's Guide to Financial Analysis Powerful Tools for Analyzing the Numbers and Making the Best Decisions for Your Business by Eliot H. Sherman

Financial Intelligence A Manager's Guide to Knowing What the Numbers Really Mean by Karen Berman

Adrian Bercovici Simon
Jun 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: finance, 2020, business
A total must read for anyone that wants to :
- start a business
- get some accounting basics
- invest in the stock market (my case)

I knew there is alot more to company valuation then reading bloomberg news , checking the P/E ratio , ROI and Growth.

This book provides you with the building blocks of starting a business and of course by learning how to build , one learns to evaluate one business worth.

Impressive diagrams , schematics and comments. This book brings you in ~300 pages from zero to hero i
Kulwinder Rajpal
Jan 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the best books out there to explain financial accounting in a simple manner. It covers all the basic concepts related to financial statements via a detailed introduction to the various terms and types of financial statements. Then it explains them with an example of a start up and a series of transactions that show how accounting changes with the changes in business. It also shows you how a financial statement could look like and what parameters are to be looked at while evaluatin ...more
Peter S
Apr 10, 2019 rated it liked it
3 stars because its such a boring topic and it could have definitely been done better. However, this book is helpful in a few ways. I now have a clear understanding of..

1. The three financial statements. I understand what they say, how to read them, and the vocabulary that accompanies them.

Income Statement = profitability
Balance sheet = assets, liabilities, and equity
Cash flow statement = cash movements

2. Ratio Analysis

3. The major equations/mechanisms of modeling of finance, including NPV,
Feb 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a really good book for review. I am going back into a business degree and Its been several years since I have had accounting. This book acted as a great refresher and it is laid out in a very logical manner. I would say that you might wanted to consider the printed version vs the kindle version. Because of the layout of the book and the type of subject matter, it does not lend itself to be easy to read on the kindle.
Dec 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A great book on understanding financial statements and key financial terms for investment. Definitely a good start for people who have zero knowledge or forgot about finances of an enterprise. Also a good primer for beginner value investors. I will read it again, to review the main messages of the book. This should present a knowledge primer allowing me to move to more challenging books suck as The Intelligent Investor.
Ben Donahower
May 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Useful book, limited examples

This was a useful book in understanding several forms and accounting. if I had a challenge it was that it followed a manufacturer, Appleseed partners, so the examples were all related to this business. For continuity sake that was great but it also left me wondering if there were examples in a service business would have been more relevant to me.
Dr. Cock'n Ballz
Fine book. Comprehensive and for beginners. What makes this book special is the author walks you through a few years operation of a business, and shows the statements along the way. Not a page turner... but useful. And a real good summary of broader business topics at the end.

I recommend it.
Rob Weir
Jul 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: investing, business
If you find yourself needing to have a conceptual understand of financial statements, what they tell, how they are put together, and how they can be interpreted, it is hard to go wrong with this engaging, approachable book.
Jun 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book will bring clearity about how the 3 financial statements are linked to each other. Use of easy language and example of a newly established company makes this an interesting read for non-accounting personnel..!!!
Dean Lewis
Mar 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The best book that explains the way to develop accounting entries to set up an initial set of financial statements. Clearly based on current accounting definitions and commonly held accounting conventions. Written to pull a reluctant reader along.
Oct 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
well presented, easily digestible, but very much an intro
Apr 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great entry level book, very clear and easy to read.
May 22, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Basic and simple to understand.
Andrei Savu
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good book to have around. Very helpful to understand how financial statements change in response to changes in the business.
Anmol Jindal
Nov 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A must read for anyone starting his own business and anyone even remotely interested in finance.
Madhavi Ravanan
Jan 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Cool and casual read. Takes away the fear of financial statements for good.
Jan 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book was helpful and easy to understand, and it connect the financial statements very will.
Bùi Hà
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The best accounting book that I have read. I learn enough accounting knowledge by just 2 nights reading this book.
Mar 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If you want to learn Accounting, then look no further. This cracker of a book gives very good insight into basics of accounting. Highly recommended
Alex Schedrov
Dec 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Great books to learn how to read financial statements and reports. It will walk you through the history of founding an apple sauce company and expanding to other markets from a financial perspective.
Dec 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome book step by step explination
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I read 2009 edition (2020 is coming out in April). It reads almost like a story. It uses simple language making it very easy to grasp concepts.
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