FINC 440 Instructions & Recommendations for Preparing the Course Assignment

This project is closely aligned with the Course Outcomes and Finance Program Objectives.  Completion of this project can be used as part of a portfolio to show potential employers the student is skilled at performing company valuations and financial statement analysis and can be included on the student’s resume.

Due at the end of Week 7 – Valuation of Financial Institution:

The purpose of this note is to carefully explain the general expectations and requirements for the Valuation of Financial Institution and Technical Analysis Assignment that is to be prepared for FINC 440.  The information and materials presented here are intended to make sure that you clearly understand the general expectations and that there are no misunderstandings about what is to be done and what is expected.


Review this material so that you are familiar with the specific requirements that are be followed in the preparation and submission of the Assignment.


This Assignment comprises 15% of the final course grade.  It will take some time and effort to produce high quality analysis.

  1. Prepare a valuation of a large financial and banking institution. This should involve: (1) Dividend Discount Model valuation; (2) Valuation by Comparables (use multiples – Price to Earnings Ratio, Price to Book Value Ratio, etc.; has several ratios under “Valuation”); and, Damodaran’s Excess Returns Model (Excel model provided).
  2. Explain the principal assumptions used in the DDM valuation?
  3. Are the valuations consistent – why or why not?
  4. What special challenges or issues did you encounter with the valuations?

Submission:  Submit to Gradebook and Post a Copy in the Discussion Section of the Online Classroom.

Required Outline & Other Information about the Assignments –

  1. Work Hard to Avoid Personal Pronouns – The excessive use of personal pronouns is discouraged in business and analytical writing. It is recommended that personal pronouns are avoided altogether, if possible.  Please make sure that personal pronouns (e.g., I, we, my, our, etc.) are avoided in paper.  It will take some work, but it can be done easily by rearranging the wording of sentences.
  2. Companies Are Not “They,” “Their,” or “Them” – This is a reminder that a company is not a “they,” “their,” or “them.” A company is very much an “it.” So, to reference a company, use “it,” the name of the company, or “the company,” or “the organization,” or “the firm,” etc.
  3. Outline for Paper –Students must use the required outline for this assignment. The closer that the paper conforms to the required outline, the better! The outline is presented in the next section.
  4. Evaluation Rubric – An evaluation rubric is available for the Assignments. It will be used to evaluate the Assignments. The rubric shows the important components that must be included in the papers.  It is a good idea to take a look at the rubric and make sure that each Assignment addresses the requirements.  A copy is posted with each Assignment in the online classroom.
  5. Subheadings – Each section of the paper must begin with a sub-heading. Please use the sub-headings included in the required outline (presented in the next section).

Here is the Required Outline (It must be used for each Assignment) –

The five class Assignments are intended to be constructive learning experiences.  They are designed to show students how to prepare analytical reports in finance using critical thinking, research, and writing skills.  The following outline is to be used for each Assignment; these titles are the required subheadings for the sections of the written report:


  1. Cover Page – Include a cover page containing the title of the Assignment, the student’s name, the professor’s name, the course title, and the date.


  1. Introduction – The Introduction must include:

(a) A review of the Assignment purpose, research methods and the principal information sources, and other information related to the completion of the analysis.

(b) The introduction should also include an overview of the sections of the paper that follow. (1/2 to 1 page)

  1. Analysis Section – The body of the report is to address the assigned topics and questions. It is essential that students include appropriate in-text reference citations in APA format:
  2. Summary / Conclusion – The summary or conclusion should review the major observations, conclusions and recommendations developed in the analysis. No new material should be introduced in this section. (1/2 to 1 page)
  3. References – Provide list of references in APA format.