Individualized Coaching Sessions

Financial Modeling Self Study

IBankingFAQ is pleased to introduce the industry’s first fully interactive, audio-based financial modeling self study program. This program teaches you how to create a basic integrated cash flow model from scratch using extensive cell-by-cell audio instructions. It is truly the closest thing to being in a live classroom or being tutored one-on-one, at a tiny (yes, tiny) fraction of the cost. And speaking of cost (as you were probably wondering), we are currently offering it for a special price of only $49. We also offer a free demo version that lets you experience the features and functionality of the self study program.

Please click the Demo/Purchase button below to open the Institute For Finance website (IBankingFAQ’s sister site) where you can download the free demo version or purchase the full version of the Self Study Program.

Demo or Purchase Self Study Program

About the Basic Modeling Self Study Program

The Basic Modeling Self Study Program is a program utilizing Microsoft Excel that teaches you step-by-step and cell-by-cell how to create an integrated financial model from scratch.  You will project an actual company’s Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Cash Flow Statement for 5 years based on the historical financial statements from that company’s 10-K filings.  The Self Study Program contains a number of features that will help you learn to build and understand a financial model, all integrated into a single Excel file.  These key features are:

Presentation on Basic Financial Modeling

The Self Study Program includes an audio/visual presentation on basic financial modeling that you will watch and listen to directly from Microsoft Excel (eliminating the hassle of having to switch back and forth between two or more computer applications). The 28 page presentation is divided into 7 sections, contains nearly 45 minutes of audio and is designed to be watched when you reach key sections of the model.  The presentation can also be viewed at any time in part or in its entirety.

When you first begin the Self Study Program, you will be prompted to view the first two sections of the presentation.  The first section explains why modeling is such an important skill in corporate finance, the steps involved in creating a cash flow model, some important modeling best practices and how to properly format a model.  This section also contains a discussion of a very important aspect of the model:  circularity.

The second section of the presentation teaches you how to go about selecting and choosing the key assumptions and drivers that will be used to forecast or project each of the company’s three financial statements:  the Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Cash Flow Statement.

You will be prompted to view the next four sections of the presentation once you commence building the model, specifically at the beginning of the Income Statement, Balance Sheet, Cash Flow Statement and Debt and Interest Schedule.  Each of these presentation sections will explain, respectively, how to create that section of the model, including how to forecast each of the line items of that section.

You will be prompted to watch the final section of the presentation after you have successfully completed the model.  This section teaches you how to check and analyze the model, how to fix many of the types of errors commonly made when modeling, including circular errors, and also discusses how to learn more about and get more practice building financial models.

Each page of the presentation contains an audio soundtrack that can be paused, restarted, rewound or fast-forwarded in order to maximize your understanding of the material.  In addition to being prompted to watch the various sections of the presentation, you have the ability to view the entire presentation or any section of the presentation at any time, directly within the Excel file.  You can also print a hard copy of the presentation should you wish to use it to take some notes.

Assumptions and Drivers

As you may know already (or will learn when you watch the Basic Modeling Presentation), one of the most important aspects of modeling is to select good assumptions and model drivers.  Before you begin to create the model, the Self Study Program will prompt you to view and listen to an explanation of each of the model drivers and assumptions that will be used to forecast each of the line items of the financial statements.  You will learn how and why the figures for each of these assumptions where selected.  You also have the ability to view these explanations at any time from the Excel file.  Once you have successfully completed building the model, you will be allowed to change these assumptions so you can view and understand the impact that these assumptions have on your model forecasts.

Building the Model

The foundation of the Self Study Program is for you to create the model itself.  As mentioned above, the model is a 5-year forecast of an actual company’s Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Cash Flow Statement.  Using both audio and textual instructions, the Self Study Program will teach you cell-by-cell how to create this integrated cash flow model.  In addition, you have the option of viewing the correct formula for each cell as well as viewing all of the cells that you need to link to in order to create the correct formula (known as “precedent cells”).

However, not only will you get the instructions for each cell, as discussed above, but after each formula that you enter, the Self Study Program will let you know if your formula has been entered correctly or incorrectly.  All of these features, including the audio instruction soundtrack, can be turned on and off by you at any time.

The Self Study Program will teach you how to project a company’s Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Cash Flow Statement.  You will also learn how these three financial statements are integrated together, one of they key components to understanding how to model.  Just as important, you will be taught how to model a revolving credit facility (“revolver”) as well as how to create a Debt and Interest Schedule, both crucial modeling skills.

Exercises and Questions

When you have successfully completed building the model, a new worksheet will be unlocked which will contain some exercises and multiple choice questions.  The exercises will ask you to calculate some key growth rates and margins based on your model projections.   The multiple choice questions will ask you for some key forecasted figures from the model based on changing the assumptions for some key model drivers.  Together, the exercises and questions will help you to understand and to analyze the model that you have built and how the assumptions affect your projections.

Additional Features

In addition to the main features discussed above, the Self Study Program also contains the following additional features,  all built into the single Excel file.

  • Two modes which can be switched at any time
    • Learning Mode – Enables cell-by-cell instructions and checks each cell’s formula as you enter it
    • Practice Mode – Disables cell-by-cell instructions and “real-time” error checking
  • Ability to hide and unhide a worksheet showing the completed model solutions
  • View your progress at any time by checking the model (showing how many cell formulas are correct, incorrect and remain to be filled in)
  • Built-in dictionary of accounting and financial terms, containing every line item used in the model
  • Separate versions optimized for Excel 2007 and Excel 2003
  • Ability to reset the model at any time and start over and to save the model at any time and begin exactly where you left off
  • Keyboard shortcuts (as well as shortcut/right-click menus) for key features while modeling
  • Detailed help and instructions, including important Excel features and keyboard shortcuts
  • Volume control for the audio instructions and audio portion of the presentation

View Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the Basic Financial Modeling Self Study Program

Please click the Demo/Purchase button below to open the Institute For Finance website (IBankingFAQ’s sister site) where you can download the free demo version or purchase the full version of the Self Study Program.

Demo or Purchase Self Study Program

For more information about the Basic Modeling Self Study Program, please email me at andrew [at] ibankingfaq.com or use the contact form below.

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