Demystifying Investment Information

Disclaimer

Preconference presented by the
BRASS Education Committee
Friday, June 24, 1994, Miami, Florida


Case Study Workbook

A Company Analysis Using Cheyenne Software

Prepared by
Michael Lavin

Edited by Katherine Shelfer
Carol Womack, Chief Editor


Note: The workbook at the preconference contained sample pages of a number of reference sources. Each group in the break-out sessions answered the same first question. Sources used to answer specific questions follow each question. Full references are provided in the bibliography.--Katherine Shelfer, ed.


PART 1

Sources:

Compact D/SEC President's Letter, 1993 Annual Report
Disclosure Database via DIALOG, President's Letter, 1994 Annual Report
Business Index/Trade & Industry, full-text interview with company president in LAN Magazine 8:11 (October 1993, p. 32)
NEXIS News Library (CURNWS File), some 200 citations
PREDICASTS Newsletter Database via Dow Jones News/Retrieval


A. Answer the first question by scanning relevant information throughout the workbook.
1. Based on the various company descriptions found in the workbook, how would you describe what this firm does? (i.e., generally speaking, what type of company is it?)

Compact D/SEC; Disclosure Database via DIALOG; Business Index/Trade & Industry; NEXIS News Library; PREDICASTS Newsletter Database via Dow Jones News/Retrieval
(Plus additional sources from other parts)

2. From this information, do you have a specific understanding of the products it makes and what they are used for? Do these products have brand names?

Yes, Compact D/SEC; Disclosure Database via Dialog


B. Answer these questions using the sample pages in Part 2.
3. Cite some significant events which have occurred to the company within the past few years which might have had an impact on its stock price. (e.g., mergers, joint ventures, major contracts, etc.)

MOODY'S Industrial Manuals, company history; S&P Stock Reports

4. Would you say the company's product(s) have a good reputation? Why or why not?

Yes, S&P Stock Reports; Predicasts Newsletter Database
Mixed, NEXIS NEWS LIBRARY; Predicasts Newsletter Database


C. Bonus question.

5. Can you determine what share of the market this company's products have achieved?

Wall Street Transcripts via Dow Jones/Data Times (a source listed in Part 3)


PART 2

Sources:

Moody's Industrial Manuals
S&P Stock Guide
Market Guide on Investext via Dow Jones News/Retrieval
S&P Stock Reports

A. Answer the first question by scanning relevant information throughout the workbook.

1. Based on the various company descriptions found in the workbook, how would you describe what this firm does? (i.e., generally speaking, what type of company is it?)

See Part 1 (above) plus additional sources provided for use with other parts.


B. Answer these questions using the sample pages in Part 2.
2. What is the latest annual dividend paid by this company?

S&P StockGuide; Market Guide on Investext via Dow Jones News/Retrieval; S&P Stock Reports

3. When was the most recent year a dividend was paid?

S&P Stock Guide; Market Guide on Investext via Dow Jones News/Retrieval; S&P Stock Reports

4. What percentage of the company's stock is owned by mutual funds, pension funds, and other institutional investors?

Market Guide on Investext via Dow Jones News/Retrieval; S&P Stock Reports


C. Bonus question.

5. Does this company have any outstanding corporate bonds (debentures)?

Market Guide on Investext via Dow Jones News/Retrieval; S&P Stock Reports


PART 3


Sources:

Value Line
Wall Street Transcript via Dow Jones/Data Times
Investext
Zack's Earnings Forecaster


A. Answer the first question by scanning relevant information throughout the workbook.

1. Based on the various company descriptions found in the workbook, how would you describe what this firm does? (i.e.,generally speaking, what type of company is it?)

See Sources for Part 1 (above) plus additional sources provided for use with other parts.
Value Line


B. Answer these questions using the sample pages in Part 3.

2. When does this company's Fiscal Year end?

Value Line; Investext


3. Cite the Beta Coefficient (The "Beta") for this company's common stock.

S&P Stock Reports; Value Line; Media General (a source from part 5)


4. Do the analysts quoted on these pages think this company's stock is a good investment? What reasons are given for their recommendation?

Yes, Value Line; Wall Street Transcripts; Investext; Zack's
Reasons: All but Zack's


C. Bonus Question.

5. How many different projections for 1994 EPS can you find in those reports?

(Numerous)


PART 4


Sources:

NEXIS News Library (CURNWS File), Quarterly Earnings
Media General Financial Services, report
Daily Stock Price Record
Dow Jones Historical Quotes
CCH Capital Changes Reports

NEXIS News Library (CURNWS File), Business Wire recent stories,
New York Times 6/9/94, Section 3, page 13
CDA/Investment Insider's Chronicle


A. Answer the first question by scanning relevant information throughout the workbook.

1. Based on the various company descriptions found here, how would you describe what this firm does? (i.e., generally speaking, what type of company is it?)

See Sources for Part 1 (above) plus additional sources provided for use with other parts.


B. Answer these questions using the sample pages in Part 4.

2. How would you characterize the company's earnings growth over the past few years?

Media General Financial Services; Dow Jones Historical Quotes


3. Do you detect any differences between the headlines for earnings announcements in the Business Wire service and the New York Times?

Yes


4. Analyze the trend in the company's stock price over the past few months. Can you identify any dates when a significant change in price occurred? Now look at the accompanying news stories to see why those changes might have taken place.

Yes, NYT; NEXIS; NYT; et al.


C. Bonus Question.

1. Based on the information shown in this section, do you think now is a good tine to buy this stock? Answer yes or no, and give a reason for your recommendation.

Possibly; however, librarians do not make stock recommendations.


PART 5


Sources:

Disclosure Database, reporting company rankings by sales
Moody's Industry Review, several pages
Media General Financial Services via Dow Jones News/Retrieval
Dow Jones via DIALOG
Compact D/SEC


A. Answer the first question by scanning relevant information throughout the workbook.

1. Based on the various company descriptions found in the workbook, how would you describe what this firm does? (i.e., generally speaking, what type of company is it?)

See Sources for Part 1 (above) plus additional sources provided for use with other parts.


B. Answer these questions using the sample pages in Part 5.

2. Why are the rankings shown on pages 34 and 35 (Disclosure/Moody's) so very different from one another?

Disclosure; Moody's Industry Review


3. Is the P/E ratio for this stock somewhat average for the software industry? (More than one figure is cited in this section, so think about your answer.)

Media General; Compact D/SEC


4. How would you interpret the tables shown on page 40? What do these "price scores" actually mean?

Moody's Industry Review, price score


C. Bonus Question.

5. Is this stock riskier (is its price fluctuations more volatile) than other stocks in the software industry?

Media General and sources from other sections


bulletDemystifying Investment Information: A Preconference
BRASS Education Committee
Friday, June 24, 1994, Miami



Disclaimer : This publication has been placed on the web for the convenience of BRASS members. Information and links will not be updated. Posted 12 December 1997.