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Impact of adoption of

International Financial
Reporting Standards on Key
Financial Ratios

Deepika Balasubramanian (09IB-016)
Gopinath C (09IB-025)
Heramb Patil (09IB-026)
V Ravikanth (09IB-046)

The continental European countries have moved towards a market oriented system from a
bank based system with respect to their financial environment. One of the biggest steps taken in
this direction was in 2005 when all the listed companies in the European Union started to report
their financial statements according to the IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards).

Though the adoption process is cumbersome and expensive, IFRS adoption improves
transparency and comparability with other European firms. It helps in improving investor
protection and making their capital markets more accessible to the foreign investors. This is a
deviation from the general working of the European countries where the information needs of the
investor have not been given much preference.

To study the impact and consequences of IFRS on the accounting standards, we can
consider data from Finland for the following reasons:-

a) There is extensive transition reporting by Finnish companies as compared to other

European countries.
b) The Finnish Accounting Standards (FAS) are similar to the Domestic Accounting
Standards (DAS) of other European countries.
c) Since it has strong legal enforcement, the transition reporting can be assumed to be
reliable and of good quality.

The conversion of FAS into IFRS has the following impact on the key financial ratios:-

Financial Ratios Impact

Current Ratio No significant change

Profitability Ratio Increase by 9-19%

Price to Earnings (PE) Decreases by 16%

Quick Ratio Decreases by 0.5%

Inconsistencies arise when we compare the IFRS and the Continental European
Accounting Standards because there are many rules in IFRS which are either not present in DAS
or it is optional. Secondly, the DAS may follow tax regulations whereas the IFRS accounting
methods are capital market oriented. Therefore, the domestic standards of the continental
European Countries require different accounting and reporting treatment from the IFRS in the
following areas:-

Employees benefits obligations

IAS 19 – It requires the employees benefit obligations to be measured at the present
DAS – Either the rules are missing (e.g. France, Finland) or the calculations are made
according to the tax regulations given.

Deferred tax
IAS 12 – requires a deferred tax liability to be recognized for all taxable temporary
differences barring some exceptions.
DAS – Rules are missing from DAS or the deferred tax is/can be calculated on the basis
of timing differences rather than temporary differences.

Intangible assets
IAS 38 – An asset can be recognized when it will entail future benefits and when the cost
of the asset can be reliably measured. Therefore, items such as research expenditures
cannot be capitalized.
DAS – Allows research costs internally generated intangible assets, including set-
up/start-up/pre-operating costs or formation expenses, to be capitalized.

Construction contracts
IAS 11 – Requires the costs and revenues of construction contracts to be recognized on a
stage of completion basis
DAS – Recognition by the stage of completion is optional

IAS 2 – Requires inventory to be measured at the lower of cost and net realizable value.
Also it should be valued at full cost.
DAS – Requires inventories to be measured at the replacement cost and instead of net
realizable cost and also gives the flexibility to valuate without including production

Share-based payments

IFRS 2 – Requires an entity to reflect the effects of share options given to the employees
in its profit and loss account.

DAS – The general practice is that the share options are not recognized in the financial

Fair Value Accounting

IFRS – lays emphasis on fair value accounting as it incorporates more information in the
financial statements, thus, assisting the investors.

It allows the following to be measured at Fair Value-

a) Pension liabilities (IAS 19)

b) Tangible and intangible fixed assets acquired in a business combination (IFRS 3)
c) Pension assets (IAS 19)
d) Share based payment liabilities (IFRS 2)
e) Investment property (IAS 40)
f) Property, plant and equipment (IAS 16)

On the other hand, the continental European countries have been traditionally valuating
on the basis of historical cost. In very rare cases there is a fair value measurement option. For
instance, if the fair value of a land or water area or security is permanently and significantly
higher than its historical cost, the Finnish legislation allows the measurement at market value.


IFRS – it requires assets with definite useful life to be depreciated / amortized

systematically and assets with indefinite useful life to be assessed for impairment.
DAS – It also requires assets with indefinite useful life to be amortized.

The impact of fair value accounting adoption on accounting figures is also an empirical question
since it is impossible to predict.

Financial Ratios:

Financial ratios are used to compare the risk and return of different firms in order to help
equity investors and creditors make intelligent investment and credit decisions. Such decisions
require both an evaluation of changes in performance over time for a particular investment and a
comparison among all firms within a single industry at a specific point in time.


A primary advantage of ratios is that they can be used to compare the risk and return
relationships of firms of different sizes. Ratios can also provide a profile of a firm, its economic
characteristics and competitive strategies, and its unique operating financial, and investment


The ratio analysis can be deceptive as it ignores differences among industries, the effect
of varying capital structures, and differences in accounting and reporting methods.

Classification of ratios

Liquidity Measurement Ratios

Liquidity ratios attempt to measure a company's ability to pay off its short-term debt
obligations. This is done by comparing a company's most liquid assets (or, those that can be
easily converted to cash), its short-term liabilities.

In general, the greater the coverage of liquid assets to short-term liabilities the better as it
is a clear signal that a company can pay its debts that are coming due in the near future and still
fund its ongoing operations. On the other hand, a company with a low coverage rate should raise
a red flag for investors as it may be a sign that the company will have difficulty meeting running
its operations, as well as meeting its obligations.

The biggest difference between each ratio is the type of assets used in the calculation.
While each ratio includes current assets, the more conservative ratios will exclude some current
assets as they aren't as easily converted to cash.

Liquidity measurement ratios are as follows:

a) Current Ratio
b) Quick Ratio
c) Cash Ratio
d) Cash Conversion Cycle

Profitability Indicator Ratios:

These ratios, much like the operational performance ratios, give users a good
understanding of how well the company utilized its resources in generating profit and
shareholder value. The long-term profitability of a company is vital for both the survivability of
the company as well as the benefit received by shareholders. It is these ratios that can give
insight into the all important "profit".

Profitability indicator ratios are as follows:

a) Profit Margin Analysis
b) Effective Tax Rate
c) Return on Assets
d) Return on Equity
e) Return on Capital Employed

Debt Ratios:

These ratios give users a general idea of the company's overall debt load as well as its
mix of equity and debt. Debt ratios can be used to determine the overall level of financial risk a
company and its shareholders face. In general, the greater the amount of debt held by a company
the greater the financial risk of bankruptcy.
Debt ratios are as follows:

a) Overview of Debt
b) Debt Ratio
c) Debt-Equity Ratio
d) Capitalization Ratio
e) Interest Coverage Ratio
f) Cash Flow to Debt Ratio

Operating Performance Ratios:

Each of these ratios have differing inputs and measure different segments of a company's
overall operational performance, but the ratios do give users insight into the company's
performance and management during the period being measured.

These ratios look at how well a company turns its assets into revenue as well as how
efficiently a company converts its sales into cash. Basically, these ratios look at how efficiently
and effectively a company is using its resources to generate sales and increase shareholder value.
In general, the better these ratios are, the better it is for shareholders.

Operating performance ratios are as follows:

a) Fixed-Asset Turnover
b) Sales/Revenue per Employee
c) Operating Cycle

Cash Flow Indicator Ratios

Cash flow indicators will focus on the cash being generated in terms of how much is
being generated and the safety net that it provides to the company. These ratios can give users
another look at the financial health and performance of a company.

At this point, we all know that profits are very important for a company. However,
through the magic of accounting and non-cash-based transactions, companies that appear very
profitable can actually be at a financial risk if they are generating little cash from these profits.
For example, if a company makes a ton of sales on credit, they will look profitable but haven't
actually received cash for the sales, which can hurt their financial health since they have
obligations to pay.

The ratios in this section use cash flow compared to other company metrics to determine
how much cash they are generating from their sales, the amount of cash they are generating free
and clear, and the amount of cash they have to cover obligations.

Cash Flow Indicator Ratios are as follows:

a) Operating Cash Flow/Sales Ratio
b) Free Cash Flow/Operating Cash Ratio
c) Cash Flow Coverage Ratio
d) Dividend Payout Ratio

Investment Valuation Ratios:

These ratios can be used by investors to estimate the attractiveness of a potential or

existing investment and to get an idea of its valuation.

However, when looking at the financial statements of a company many users can suffer
from information overload as there are so many different financial values. Investment valuation
ratios attempt to simplify this evaluation process by comparing relevant data that help users gain
an estimate of valuation.

Investment Valuation Ratios are as follows:

a) Per Share Data
b) Price/Book Value Ratio
c) Price/Cash Flow Ratio
d) Price/Earnings Ratio
e) Price/Earnings To Growth Ratio
f) Price/Sales Ratio
g) Dividend Yield
h) Enterprise Value Multiple

Key ratios considered for assignment are:

Operating Profit Margin:

This is one of the ‘profitability indicator ratios’ used. It is absolute operating profit as a
percentage of net sales/ revenues. These ratios help us to keep score, as measured over time, of
management's ability to manage costs and expenses and generate profits.

Operating Margin=Operating Profit Net Sales (Revenue)

Where Operating Profit = Gross Profit - Operating expense

Operating expenses would include such account captions as selling, marketing and
administrative, research and development, depreciation and amortization, rental properties, etc


The objective of margin analysis is to detect consistency or positive/negative trends in a

company's earnings. Positive profit margin analysis translates into positive investment quality.
To a large degree, it is the quality, and growth, of a company's earnings that drive its stock price.

Return on Equity:

This is another ‘profitability indicator ratios’ used. This ratio indicates how profitable a
company is by comparing its net income to its average shareholders' equity. The return on equity
ratio (ROE) measures how much the shareholders earned for their investment in the company.


Return on Equity=Net IncomeAverage Shareholders'Equity

The higher the ratio percentage, the more efficient management is in utilizing its equity
base and the better return is to investors.

In the case of capital-intensive businesses, which have to carry a relatively large asset
base, will calculate their ROA based on a large number in the denominator of this ratio.
Conversely, non-capital-intensive businesses (with a small investment in fixed assets) will be
generally favored with a relatively high ROA because of a low denominator number.

It is precisely because businesses require different-sized asset bases that investors need to
think about how they use the ROA ratio. For the most part, the ROA measurement should be
used historically for the company being analyzed.

If peer company comparisons are made, it is imperative that the companies being
reviewed are similar in product line and business type. Simply being categorized in the same
industry will not automatically make a company comparable.

Current Ratio:

This is one of the ‘liquidity measurement ratios’ used. The current ratio is a popular
financial ratio used to test a company's liquidity (also referred to as its current or working capital
position) by deriving the proportion of current assets available to cover current liabilities.


Current Ratio=Current AssetsCurrent Liabilities


The concept behind this ratio is to ascertain whether a company's short-term assets (cash,
cash equivalents, marketable securities, receivables and inventory) are readily available to pay
off its short-term liabilities (notes payable, current portion of term debt, payables, accrued
expenses and taxes). In theory, the higher the current ratio, the better. But in practice a high
current ratio is not necessarily good, and a low current ratio is not necessarily bad.

When looking at the current ratio, it is important that a company's current assets can
cover its current liabilities; however, investors should be aware that this is not the whole story on
company liquidity. Try to understand the types of current assets the company has and how
quickly these can be converted into cash to meet current liabilities. This important perspective
can be seen through the cash conversion cycle. By digging deeper into the current assets, we gain
a greater understanding of a company's true liquidity.

Quick Ratio:

This is one of the ‘liquidity measurement ratios’ used. The quick ratio or the acid-test
ratio - is a liquidity indicator that further refines the current ratio by measuring the amount of the
most liquid current assets there are to cover current liabilities. The quick ratio is more
conservative than the current ratio because it excludes inventory and other current assets, which
are more difficult to turn into cash.


Quick Ratio=Cash equivalents+Short-term Investments+Accounts

ReceivableCurrent Liabilities


Higher ratio means a more liquid current position. The basics and use of this ratio are
similar to the current ratio in that it gives users an idea of the ability of a company to meet its
short-term liabilities with its short-term assets. Another beneficial use is to compare the quick
ratio with the current ratio. If the current ratio is significantly higher, it is a clear indication that
the company's current assets are dependent on inventory.

Price/ Earnings Ratio:

This is one of the ‘investment valuation ratios’ used. The financial reporting of both
companies and investment research services use a basic earnings per share (EPS) figure divided
into the current stock price to calculate the P/E multiple (i.e. how many times a stock is trading
(its price) per each unit of money of EPS).

PE Ratio=Stock price per ShareEarnings per Share


PE Ratio=Total Stock price of all Shares in the marketNet Income


A stock with a high P/E ratio suggests that investors are expecting higher earnings growth
in the future compared to the overall market, as investors are paying more for today's earnings in
anticipation of future earnings growth. Hence, as a generalization, stocks with this characteristic
are considered to be growth stocks. Conversely, a stock with a low P/E ratio suggests that
investors have more modest expectations for its future growth compared to the whole market.

The growth investor views high P/E ratio stocks as attractive buys and low P/E stocks as
flawed, unattractive prospects. Value investors are not inclined to buy growth stocks at what they
consider to be overpriced values, preferring instead to buy what they see as underappreciated and
undervalued stocks, at a bargain price, which, over time, will hopefully perform well.

Impact of IFRS Adoption

The study analyzed the impact of adoption of IFRS on five key financial ratios and one
market based ratio and the results seem to indicate that IFRS changes the magnitude of the ratios
significantly. Profitability ratios – Operating Profit Margin (OPM), Return on Equity (ROE), two
liquidity ratios – Current Ratio (CR) and Quick Ratio (QR) and the market-based ratio – Price to
Earnings ratio (PE) are the ratios used in the study.

Among the financial ratios, Current Ratio does not show any significant alteration upon
adoption of IFRS. The results of comparison of financial ratios are shown in table 3.

Examining the Balance sheet & Income Statement

Balance sheet

The results observed can be attributed to the change in the balance sheet and income
statement figures reported, conforming to the IFRS standards. The overall effect of IFRS
adoption seems to be an increase in the income statement figures reported and lowering of values
reported in balance sheet. Financials reported under heads current assets, equity and advances
remain unchanged. The median values of various heads of balance sheet and income statement
are shown in table 1.

The different entries in a Balance Sheet affected due to the adoption of IFRS / IAS
accounting standards are as follows. The entries are in thousands of Euros. Each row in the
following table explains the value of the assets & the liabilities recorded as per the FAS or the
IFRS / IAS standard. Also the absolute difference in the values and percentage of differences has
been displayed.

Table 1
FAS IFRS/IAS Difference % Difference


Inventories 12290 9956 -2334 -18.991

Cash & Cash

Equivalents 6601 6601 0 0

Current assets 46444 45610 -834 -1.79571

Shareholder’s equity
& liabilities

Equity (1 January) 52799 48104 -4695 -8.89221

Equity (31
December) 46163 48238 2075 4.494942

Equity (average) 49928 49834 -94 -0.18827

Long-term debt (1
January) 12200 16015 3815 31.27049
Long-term debt (31
December) 11300 15300 4000 35.39823

Long-term debt
(average) 11750 15405 3655 31.10638

Current debt (1
January) 8161 8164 3 0.03676

Current debt (31

December) 9900 10281 381 3.848485

Current debt
(average) 9221 9549 328 3.557098

Total debt and equity

(average) 69249 73079 3830 5.530766

Advances 11600 11600 0 0

Total current
liabilities 29656 30097 441 1.487052

Total equity and

liabilities (1 January) 79573 83310 3737 4.696317

Total equity and

liabilities (31
December) 84848 95247 10399 12.25603

Total equity and

liabilities (average) 85442 93844 8402 9.833571

Table 1: Medians of Balance sheet items (thousand Euros)

It can be observed that three Asset & Liability entries have been affected by the new
standard, and explained. And it can also be observed that the Long-term debt, as recorded on 31st
December, has by 35 % which is the highest change affected by IFRS / IAS. The least effect is
on the Cash & Cash equivalent assets and also the Advances.
The highest decrease is in the value of the Inventories which decreased by over 19 %,
while current assets have decreased only by 1.8 %. The net effect of the adoption of the IFRS on
the Assets is of decrease, while the effect on the Liabilities is to increase the values of the entries.
This effect can be attributed mainly to the Fair Value accounting advocated by the IFRS.
Also it can be observed that the equity (on an average) decreased by 0.2 %
approximately, and current debt (on an average) has decreased by 3.6 %, whilst the total current
liabilities decreased only by 1.5 %.
In spite of the very large increase in the Long term debt, the Total debt & equity (on an
average) changed only by 5.5 % - which is to say that the Long term debt as a percentage of the
total debt is less. Since the effect of these standards on the Advances is null, the Total liabilities
& equity decreased only by a meager 9.8 %.
So, although significant difference can be observed in the Long term debt, the new
standard doesn’t affect the Liabilities too much. But the assets are significantly affected by the
new standard.

Income statement

The new standard has led to a decrease of the Income Taxes by 8.2 %, which is the
highest change effected in the Income statement. And Sales has the least effect of a decrease of
0.7 %. The financial income & expenses has increased by 6.7% which is the second highest
change recorded in the impact on the Income statement.

Table 2:
FAS IFRS/IAS Difference %

Sales 97140 96469 -671 -0.69076

profit 8896 9298 402 4.518885

income &
expenses -730 -779 -49 6.712329

Income taxes -2271 -2084 187 -8.23426

Net profit 7966 7586 -380 -4.77027

Table 2: Income statement

Examining the Financial Ratios

The analysis reports an increase of 8.4 percent (Table 3) in operating profits margin,
OPM, after adoption of IFRS. The change in both sales and operating profits affect the operating
margin of a firm and both of them seem to have had significant change after IFRS adoption. But
the change in operating profit, the numerator, seems to be much higher than that of sales and has
contributed to the big change in operating profit margin ratio.

Table 3

FAS IFRS/IAS Difference %


Margin 0.0616 0.0668 0.0052 8.441558

Return On
Equity 0.1063 0.1282 0.0219 20.60207

Quick Ratio 0.9638 0.9584 -0.0054 -0.56028

Ratio 1.4403 1.416 -0.0243 *

Price to
ratio 13.3415 11.1048 -2.2367 -16.765

Table 3: Comparison of FAS and IFRS based values of financial ratios. All values tabulated are
median values for the respective ratios. * Change omitted for CR owing to statistical insignificance.

ROE measures a company’s profitability by revealing the profit generated with the
shareholder’s investment and it has had the largest change (20 percent) among the ratios
investigated, as can be seen from Table 1. This can be attributed to the increase in numerator of
the ratio, net income though there is also a downward revision of the denominator, average
shareholder’s equity. This is because change in net income appears to be considerably larger than
the change in equity.

The PE ratio is the ratio of company’s current share price to average earning per share
and is extensively used in investment analysis. The 16 percent decrease in PE multiple can
primarily be explained by the increase in net income of the company and hence an increase in the
denominator of the ratio, earnings-per-share.

The liquidity ratio (QR) decreases 0.5 per cent, because the denominator (total current
liabilities) increases relatively more than the numerator (i.e. current assets minus inventories).

As can be seen from the above discussions, the changes in profitability ratios (OPM,
ROE, ROIC) and the market-based ratio (PE multiple) are a direct consequence of increase of the
figures reported in the income statement. The changes in the liquidity ratio (QR) are primarily
because of changes in the assets and liabilities reported in the balance sheet.

Impact of IFRS Adoption on key financial ratios

Profitability ratios

The table 3 (mentioned above) captures the various standards that have an effect on the
Profitability ratios and the Price to Earnings ratio. It has been observed that the effect of the IAS
19 and IFRS 2 standards on the transition is almost zero, but the overall impact might be
significant owing to the presence of large number of firms in the market.

Operating Profit Margin:

IAS 19 caters to the Employment benefits

IFRS 2 caters to the Share based payment

IFRS 3 caters to the Business Communications

All these three standards have an effect on the Profitability ratios i.e. Operating Profit
Margin, Return on Equity and Return on Invested Capital. The IAS 19 (Employment benefits),
IFRS 3 (Business Communications) standards have a positive effect, while the IFRS 2 (Share
options) standard leads to a decrease in all the three ratios. And contrastingly, IAS 19 and IFRS 3
have a negative impact, while the IFRS 2 has a positive impact on the Price to Earnings ratio. It
is also observed that the strongest impact on all these ratios has been produced by the IFRS 3
standard that refers to Business Communications.

In other words, the IFRS 3 produced the maximum impact on the median of all these
ratios. The OPM ratio increased by a good 8.4 %, which is attributable to the prominent increase
in the Operating Profit by IAS 19 and IFRS 3 and a dilute decrease by the IFRS 2 standard.

Return on Equity:

IAS 16 caters to valuation of Property, plant & equipment

IAS 32 caters to Disclosure & Presentation

These ratios in addition to the standards mentioned above produce a significant effect of
20% on the Return on Equity ratio. The IAS 16 (Valuation of Property, plant & Equipment) and
IAS 32 (Disclosure & Presentation) standards dictate the restatement of the Shareholders’ equity
and the value of the ROE increases. Though, the IFRS 3 (Business Communications) affects both
the Net Profit & Shareholders’ equity, the impact on the numerator is higher than that on the
denominator, and thus the ratio increases.

Price to Earnings ratio:

The Price to Earnings ratio decreased by a considerable 16 %, mainly due to the IAS 19
(Employee benefits), IFRS 3 (Business Communications). But the IAS 17 (Leases) and IFRS 2
(Share based payment) increase the PE ratio. But the decreasing impact is far higher than the
increasing impact and thus leading to an overall decrease in the ratio.

The IAS 19 (Employee benefits) increased the Net profits, decreased the Equity &
Invested Capital. While, IFRS 3(Business Communications) increases the Net profits
considerably and Equity & Invested Capital slightly mainly due to the requirement to assess
goodwill for impairment annually instead of amortizing it systematically. And these ratios
increase the Profitability ratios and decrease the PE ratio.

The IAS 16 (Valuation of Property, plant & Equipment) & IAS 32 (Disclosure &
Presentation) decrease the Equity and Invested Capital thus improving the ROE. The
requirement to recognize share-base payments or share options in the financial statement and
measurement at fair value (IFRS 2) decreased the Net Profits and thus reducing the PE ratio.

Table 4

Operating Profit Return On Equity Price to

Margin Earnings ratio

IAS 2 None None None

IAS 16 None Average None


IAS 17 None None Net Income

IAS 19 Operating Profit Net Income & Net Income


IAS 32 None Average None


IAS 40 None None None

IFRS 2 Operating Profit Net Profit & Net Income

IFRS 3 Operating Profit Net Profit & Net Income

Liquidity ratios

Restating the FAS-based Quick Ratio and Current Ratio led to a decrease in the ratios.
Quick ratio:
IAS 39 caters to the recognition and measurement of Derivative Instruments

The overall ratio decreased only a meager 0.5 % and is basically because of the
decreasing impact of IAS 17 (Leases) and IAS 39 (Derivative instruments) on the denominator.
Current Ratio:
IAS 12 caters to Income Taxes
In addition to the above mentioned ratios, IAS 12 (Income tax) decreased the Current
Ratio, while the IAS 2 (Inventories) increases the numerator.
The decrease in the liquidity ratio is prominently because of the IAS 17 (Leases).
Quick Ratio Current Ratio

IAS 2 None Cash instruments

IAS 12 None Liabilities

IAS 17 Cash Cash Instruments &

Instruments & Current Liabilities

IAS 32 Current Current Liabilities


Where Cash instruments = Cash equivalents, Short-term Investments, Accounts Receivable

All the companies adopting the IFRS standard are supposed to produce a transition report
that details their financial statements in both the existing standard and IFRS. The impact of IFRS
adoption on key performance indicators considers data from Finland because the transition
reporting of Finnish entities is extensive enough. Also the Finnish accounting standards are
comparable to the DAS of the continental European countries, and so Finnish data is taken as an
appropriate representative of the European conditions.

This report discussed the impact of IFRS adoption on the key performance indicators.
The report explains the impact in four parts:

a) Introduces the IFRS, DAS standards and explains the ground assumptions
b) Explains some key financial ratios
c) Change in the key financial ratios
d) Examining the changes and identifying the various standards that produce the impact

The Profitability ratios increased considerably, and the PE ratio decreased significantly.
The removal of amortization of purchased goodwill is the reason for increase in the Profitability
ratios. The equity and quick ratios decreased slightly. The decrease in the liquidity ratios is
explained by the increase in the current liabilities.

Overall, the fair value accounting, lease accounting and income tax accounting explain
the changes in the key financial ratios. Adoption of the fair value accounting & stricter
restrictions with respect to certain accounting issues are the reasons for the changes observed in
the accounting figures.


Case 1: Issues to look into while analyzing cash flow indicators

Typically when we analyze the cash flows for some infrastructure company always look
at the kind of jobs being executed. Also note the major deliverables, their respective schedule
and the payment terms accepted in the contract document. These give insight in what can be the
impact on the cash flow when the Contractor Company delays in achieving a milestone or say
the customer defaults on payment against any one of the milestone activity.

Also there can be substantial impact on cash flow for an Infrastructure company
(Contractor) when there is difference in agreed payment terms between Contractor and Customer
and between Contractor and Vendor. If the vendor delays the cost of delay will be the equivalent
to gap risk carried by the Contractor on account of payment terms. For example for a typical
combined cycle power project (350 – 400 MW) delay of delivery of critical equipment like
Turbine can have impact of INR 30-40 Crores depending on the quantum of delay and weighted
average cost of capital for the contractor company.

Case 2: Factors to be looked into when analyzing profitability ratios

When you analyze return on equity, look for assets where the equity has been employed.
Check if the company under consideration is undergoing change in the assets hold by the
company. This may be an issue to be looked in typically for big conglomerates where the
company may reduce or withdraw from exposure to one kind of business and/ or get into other
kind of business requiring certain different kind of assets.

For example, Larsen & Toubro which was initially into Cement business came out of the
business and got into new business areas like Power equipment manufacturing and shipbuilding.
This restructuring of the company led to change in the asset class hold by the company which
also affected the returns from the assets for almost similar quantum of equity.

Case 3: Factors to be looked into when analyzing current ratio or quick ratio
If two companies may be having almost same cash ratio or quick ratio then we need to
look for other indicators like collection period for accounts receivable and/ or the inventory
being turned over in the given period. For instance, the payment terms typically agreed by
General Electric (GE) are on the basis of period from the date of contract whereas in case of
Hitachi the payment terms are against the milestones. The result being better cash flow for GE
than Hitachi which means GE has better ability to pay off its short term debt obligations in
comparison to Hitachi.

Also when we compare companies say GE & Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) in
terms of product portfolio, we find MHI offers limited models of turbines typically of higher size
whereas GE offers turbines in small size to large size range. Thereby the delivery schedules for
GE are more spread over a period when compared to that of MHI for same quantum of order
booking. The cash flow are the result of the delivery schedules. Thereby GE has better ability to
pay off its short term debt obligations in comparison to MHI because of its wide product