Saturday, October 28, 2006

Analyze a Company

How to go about systematically analyzing a company? You must look for the following to make the right analysis:

Industry Analysis: Companies producing similar products are subset (form a part) of an Industry/Sector. For example, National Hydroelectric Power Company (NHPC) Ltd., National Thermal Power Company (NTPC) Ltd., Tata Power Company (TPC) Ltd. etc. belong to the Power Sector/Industry of India. It is very important to see how the industry to which the company belongs is faring. Specifics like effect of Government policy, future demand of its products etc. need to be checked. At times prospects of an industry may change drastically by any alterations in business environment. For instance, devaluation of rupee may brighten prospects of all export oriented companies. Investment analysts call this as Industry Analysis.

Corporate Analysis: How has the company been faring over the past few years? Seek information on its current operations, managerial capabilities, growth plans, its past performance vis-à-vis its competitors etc. This is known as Corporate Analysis.

Financial Analysis: If performance of an industry as well as of the company seems good, then check if at the current price, the share is a good buy. For this look at the financial performance of the company and certain key financial parameters like Earnings Per Share (EPS), P/E ratio, current size of equity etc. for arriving at the estimated future price. This is termed as Financial Analysis. For that you need to understand financial statements of a company i.e. Balance Sheet and Profit and Loss Account contained in the Annual Report of a company.
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