Common Sized Financial Statements

Introduction to Common-Sized Financial Statements

Common-sized financial statements are general financial statements (like the income statement, statement of financial position and statement of cash flows) that are expressed in terms of a number of base figures. The purpose of presenting financial statements in this way is to assist make better comparisons. The detection of variations and trends is frequently very clear than may be the case while examining the original statements that are expressed in financial values.

Vertical analysis

One approach to common-sized statements is to describe all the figures in a specific statement in terms of one of the figures in that statement. This 'base' figure is usually one that is seen like a main figure in the statement, like sales revenue in an income statement, total long-term funds within a statement of financial position and the cash flow from operating activities in the statement of cash flows.

Horizontal analysis

Horizontal analysis is an option to the vertical analysis that we have observe so far. Here the figures appearing in a specific financial statement are described as a base figure (i.e. 100) and the equal figures appearing in identical statements are described as a percentage of this base figure. So, for instance, the inventories figure appearing in a specific statement of financial position might be set like the base figure (i.e., set at 100) and then the inventories figures taking place in successive statements of financial position could each be described as a percentage of this base inventories figure. The 'base' statement would generally be the earliest (or latest) of a set of statements for similar business.

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