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Ratios Tell a Story—2021
Haskins, Mark E. Case C-2456 / Published June 16, 2022 / 5 pages.
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Product Overview

This short, engaging case challenges students to review a series of corporate financial metrics and match them to one of 13 listed industries. As such, students are to use their intuition and common sense pertaining to the distinctive characteristics of, and the key differences between, the 13 industries and then identify the financial metrics that are most indicative of those traits. This case is used at Darden in full-time, EMBA, and Executive Education, and would be appropriate for undergraduate courses in finance and accounting.



Learning Objectives

This case provides an engaging opportunity for students to learn to: •Define, operationalize, and interpret several basic financial statement-based ratios. •Craft a story about the distinctive aspects of a company’s business by interpreting common-size balance sheets and several widely used financial ratios. •Hypothesize and assert how some of their basic understandings of an industry should be reflected in pertinent financial measures. •Confidently pose, defend, and explain the rationale for their proposed matching of an industry with a set of key financial metrics drawn from a company in that industry. •Reinforce the notion (or establish the notion) that financial statements and the ratios that are derived from them are, in part, elements of an enterprise’s performance report—as such, management of that enterprise is not ambivalent or neutral about what those performance measures portray. •Respond to classmates’ questions and challenges.


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  • Overview

    This short, engaging case challenges students to review a series of corporate financial metrics and match them to one of 13 listed industries. As such, students are to use their intuition and common sense pertaining to the distinctive characteristics of, and the key differences between, the 13 industries and then identify the financial metrics that are most indicative of those traits. This case is used at Darden in full-time, EMBA, and Executive Education, and would be appropriate for undergraduate courses in finance and accounting.

  • Learning Objectives

    Learning Objectives

    This case provides an engaging opportunity for students to learn to: •Define, operationalize, and interpret several basic financial statement-based ratios. •Craft a story about the distinctive aspects of a company’s business by interpreting common-size balance sheets and several widely used financial ratios. •Hypothesize and assert how some of their basic understandings of an industry should be reflected in pertinent financial measures. •Confidently pose, defend, and explain the rationale for their proposed matching of an industry with a set of key financial metrics drawn from a company in that industry. •Reinforce the notion (or establish the notion) that financial statements and the ratios that are derived from them are, in part, elements of an enterprise’s performance report—as such, management of that enterprise is not ambivalent or neutral about what those performance measures portray. •Respond to classmates’ questions and challenges.