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Finance People: An Introduction to Their World and How They Think

Essential Reading for Understanding Practical Financial Concepts

Distilled from decades of working with new finance learners, Finance People is designed to give new finance students and practitioners a firm footing in the foundational concepts of finance. With straightforward language and vocabulary definitions, practical easy-to-follow examples, and step-by-step exercises, Finance People demystifies key financial topics.

At the Darden School, the book is recommended reading for pre-matriculation to the program. It is essential reading for undergraduate, MBA, or executive learners who are new to finance and may need a brief introduction to gain intuition about financial markets, investing, and other business applications.

The first section lays out the building blocks of the language and provides a sense of what finance is and is not about. The second section introduces principles finance people use to discriminate good from bad investments, including such concepts as inflation, risk, diversification, and the opportunity cost of capital. The third section transitions to the metrics finance people use to measure performance, including such concepts as financial accounting, cash flow, and financial modeling. The fourth section explores principles of valuation and how finance people use them to value business entities such as loans and businesses. The final section examines principles finance people use to fund their business operations, including such concepts as the cash cycle, leverage, and the sources and uses of cash.

Along with practical, down-to-earth examples from the perspectives of fictional business decision-makers, each chapter also contains practice problems that are critical to absorbing the key principles and methods in each chapter. Finally, the book includes a handy glossary of finance terms and a list of core equations and mathematical expressions.

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