Over 1.8 million professionals use CFI to learn accounting, financial analysis, modeling and more. Start with a free account to explore 20+ always-free courses and hundreds of finance templates and cheat sheets.
Corporate Finance Ratios are quantitative measures that are used to assess businesses. These ratios are used by financial analysts, equity research analysts, investors, and asset managers to evaluate the overall financial health of businesses, with the end goal of making better investment decisions. Corporate Finance Ratios are also heavily used by financial managers and C-suite officers to get a better understanding of how their business is performing.
Types of Corporate Finance Ratios
Corporate Finance Ratios can be broken down into four categories that measure different types of financial metrics for a business: Liquidity ratios, Operational Risk ratios, Profitability ratios, and Efficiency Ratios. The differences between these categories are explained in the following graphic:
How to Use Ratios?
Corporate Finance Ratios enable analysts, management, and investors to assess the financial performance of a company by ranking them against time-series data, competitor ratios, or performance targets.
Ratios are not very meaningful by themselves. To draw better insights from them, we should calculate the same ratios for a number of different companies that operate within the same industry (i.e., competitors). This will enable us to better understand how well a company is performing within the context of the industry. Ratios can also be computed at various periods in time in order to see how they have evolved over time. This can be done for an individual company, or for a number of companies operating in the same industry in order to observe how specific metrics have changed.
Lastly, ratios can be used to benchmark the performance of a company’s management team against targets that were set out earlier. Some companies compensate their management teams when certain specific ratio targets are achieved. For example, a CEO may receive a special bonus if, under his tenure, the company is able to increase its return on equity by 10%.
Expresses COGS as a multiple of the company's average inventory
COGS / Average Inventory
Thank you for reading this article on Corporate Finance Ratios! CFI offers the Financial Modeling & Valuation Analyst (FMVA)™ certification program for those looking to take their careers to the next level. To learn more about related topics, check out the following CFI resources:
Learn accounting fundamentals and how to read financial statements with CFI’s free online accounting classes.
These courses will give the confidence you need to perform world-class financial analyst work. Start now!
Building confidence in your accounting skills is easy with CFI courses! Enroll now for FREE to start advancing your career!
Take your learning and productivity to the next level with our Premium Templates.
Upgrading to a paid membership gives you access to our extensive collection of plug-and-play Templates designed to power your performance—as well as CFI's full course catalog and accredited Certification Programs.
Already have a Self-Study or Full-Immersion membership? Log in
Access Exclusive Templates
Gain unlimited access to more than 250 productivity Templates, CFI's full course catalog and accredited Certification Programs, hundreds of resources, expert reviews and support, the chance to work with real-world finance and research tools, and more.