Understanding Core Financial Ratios And Their Purpose

Financial indicators are crucial for gauging a company’s commercial efficiency, revealing the company’s liabilities, inventory stockpiling, and outstanding receivables. They are essential for ongoing evaluation and informed decision-making. Financial ratios are numerical values found in statements that bankers and investors use to determine the feasibility of extending loans or investing in a company. Understanding a company’s financial status and performance is crucial, and financial ratios play a key role in providing this information.

Explaining Financial Ratios

Financial ratios are calculations that inform traders and investors about their ventures’ potential success and present tactics’ effectiveness. They are crucial in driving decision-making and developing investment strategies, as they provide insight into the financial situation and the effectiveness of current measurements. Grasping the idea of financial ratios is essential for effective financial management.

Financial ratios provide quick financial projections without complex calculations, making it easier to understand if an investment is profitable and the expected returns. These figures are derived from various computations, typically performed by a device, software, or a simple calculator, and hold significant financial meanings.

Financial ratios hold significant importance in various financial procedures and statements, including but not limited to balance sheets, profit and loss statements, cash flow analysis, and feasibility analysis. 

Financial ratios can be used to compare various financial statistics, but small business owners and managers should focus on a small set of ratios to identify areas for improvement. These ratios are time-sensitive and can only provide a picture of the business when they were prepared. They can be misleading when taken individually but can be valuable when tracked over time or used to compare against company goals or industry standards.

Financial ratios are indispensable instruments for understanding a company’s financial position and tracking investments. They provide comprehensive insights and guide a company’s monetary strategy. They are commonly used in capital statements and analyses, making understanding their workings crucial to identifying underlying financial gaps or opportunities.

Top Ratios

Financial ratios are in a state of constant flux due to the ever-changing nature of businesses. It is essential for prospective analysts to stay updated on news and global affairs. 

Some core ratios have remained relevant and stand the test of time, including the following:

Working Capital Ratio (WCR)

Companies seek to achieve a financial advantage by having more assets than accrued expenses, resulting in a greater income than expenditure. This approach keeps them from losing money.

The assets-to-liabilities ratio is a crucial financial measure that indicates a company’s performance compared to its liabilities, ensuring that current assets add more value to company expenses derived from liabilities.

A WCR ratio can be calculated using the following formula:

WCR = current assets / current liabilities.

A WCR ratio of less than 1 indicates inefficient monetary policy and liquidity issues, while a ratio between 1.5 and 2 indicates a solid financial position and a ratio over 2 may indicate inefficient asset management.

Earnings Per Share Ratio (EPS)

EPS is a crucial ratio in stock exchanges, used by companies to plan public offerings and by investors to determine investment allocation. It indicates a company’s profitability and the expected earnings from owning a corporation’s shares.

Publicly traded companies aim to boost their earnings per share (EPS) to attract investors and generate interest in their stocks. The reason for this is that a higher EPS indicates greater profitability for shareholders.

The EPS ratio is calculated in two ways:

EPS = company’s net income / average outstanding shares.

EPS = (company’s net income – dividends to preferred shareholders) / average outstanding shares.

Return on Equity (ROE)

The ROE ratio is a crucial indicator for investors, indicating investments’ success and capital management. New businesses frequently seek assistance from angel investors, accelerators, and funds to kickstart their ventures and secure essential assets.

Investors assess the ROE ratio after a business’s launch and operation to gauge its financial management and equity growth.

A high ROE indicates a company’s efficient growth and growth in invested money, calculated by business entrepreneurs.

The formula for the ROE calculation is as follows:

ROE = Net Income / Shareholder equity


Financial ratios are crucial figures utilised by traders and investors to determine an investment’s potential profitability and success. They are essential for guiding decisions and strategising investments. They comprehensively view a company’s financial health and monitor investment activities. They are commonly employed in financial reports to pinpoint financial challenges or areas for potential growth. Comprehending financial ratios within the field of finance can reveal underlying issues or possible concerns that might not be instantly apparent in typical financial statements or forecasts.