Book review: The Logic Behind the Numbers – Financial Analysis and Valuation Demystified

By Tim Hinchliffe October 10, 2016

Fancy dabbling in the stock market but don’t know where to hedge your bets? Want to unravel the mystery behind financial statements and valuations?

The new book from business tools and analysis publisher Business & Investor Labs is here to help. With a mission to make financial analysis accessible, and help investors stay savvy in these ever-changing times, “The Logic Behind the Numbers – Financial Analysis and Valuation Demystified,” empowers everyone from laymen to key decision makers, to make better investment decisions.

What’s so special?

Unlike traditional financial texts that concentrate solely on investment knowledge, this book delves deeper, going behind-the-business scenes to give readers a 30,000 foot view of the economics of a business.

It is not about understanding the numbers, “but about understanding the business behind the numbers,” says author Martin Hoffman, a former private equity professional and founder of Business & Investor Labs.

Clarifying business valuation, he believes, is the key to making financial analysis accessible. “We know there are countless people out there who have the knowledge to invest in and assess companies, but they lack the essential toolkit to assess the financial statements and to value a business,” Hoffman adds.

Cue “The Logic Behind the Numbers,” and its common-sense tool-kit – all anyone needs to understand the financial inner-workings of business in the post-industrial age.

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How does the tool-kit work?

Hoffman’s book is split into four, easily-digestible sections:

“The Foundation” explains how the system of financial statements operates and how it relates to the underlying business; “Setting the Focus” gives readers step-by-step instructions on how to adjust their analysis for different industries and business set-ups; and “Financial Analysis” and “Valuation” build on the previous two chapters, teaching investors common sense methods for undertaking financial analysis and valuation in a focused way.

Readers can also upgrade their standard e-reader or printed version, to a more comprehensive package. This extended bundle includes an additional whiteboard ebook and a specially-developed Excel tool, allowing investors to test various scenarios and understand the key return-driving factors involved in any potential investment. A great way to confront those concerns or challenge those assumptions before committing…

Why do I need it?

After the global financial crisis, the stock market remains in a precarious position, and returns over the next 20 years are predicted to be far less than the previous 30 due to a number of factors – from market disruption by tech giants to the rising popularity of small business platforms.

With all this uncertainty, the challenges faced in the investment world over the next few years are set to be massive. Staying one step ahead of the game, and being armed with the knowledge needed to outperform the market, has never been more important:

“We help our readers look past all the noise in this era of mass information,” Hoffman explains, “and help them focus on the most critical factors to drive the success of a business.”

With everything to play for – especially in these uncertain times – an extra helping hand when it comes to investments certainly can’t hurt.