Richard J. Bocchinfuso

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." – Oscar Wilde

FIT – MGT 5000 – Week 8

Discussion Post

 

Discussion Response

Nicely detailed post.  I am curious how you calculated/derived “Net Credit Sales”?  It looks like you used the “Total Net Revenues” (as did quite a few others).  Is this correct?  I used the “Total Net Sales” found in Table 16 of the 10-K. I am wondering if either number is correct?  I found this: https://goo.gl/qEFdZ2 on how to calculate “Credit Sales” using AR but I also found some other conflicting information.
Net revenues
2015: $3,963,313
2014: $3,084,370
2013: $2,332,051
I used “Total net sales” taken directly from the 10-K
2015: $3,825,691
2014: $2,997,932
2013: $2,277,073
“Credit sales” calculated using the following formula:  (net revenue – AR at begging of period + AR at end of period)
2015: $4,117,116
2014: $3,154,253
2013: $2,366,479

Assignment

 

 

FIT – MGT 5000 – Week 7

Discussion Post

1. What is(are) Under Armour, Inc.’s, main source(s) of cash? Is this good news or bad news to its managers, stockholders, and creditors? What is Under Armour, Inc.’s, main use of cash? Is this good news or bad news? Discuss your reasoning.

Operating activities which produced $219,033,000 in cash in 2014 is Under Armour’s primary source of cash.
Under Armour generates ample cash from basic operations to finance current operations and to reinvest in the business.
It would appear that Under Armour’s primary use for cash is reinvestment which we see as negative cash flow from investment activities for the acquisition of new assets.
Under Armour’s cash flows have experienced 183% growth from 2013 to 2014. Under Armour’s cash flow position (liquidity) is indicative of a healthy organization and provides Under Armour with flexibility. All of this adds up to good news for managers, stockholders, and creditors.

2. Explain briefly the three most significant differences between net cash provided by operating activities and net income.

Change in Accounts receivable = ($101,057,000)
Change in inventories = ($84,658,000)
Depreciation and amortization = $72,093,000

3. Did Under Armour, Inc., buy or sell more plant assets during 2014 than in the previous two years? How can you tell?

Yes, Under Armour purchased more plant assets during 2014 than in the previous two years.
2014 Purchases of property and equipment = $140,528,000
2013 Purchases of property and equipment = $87,830,000
2012 Purchases of property and equipment = $50,650,000

4. Identify the largest item in the financing activities section of the Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows. Explain the company’s probable reasoning behind this activity.

Proceeds from term loan = $250,000,000
It would appear that Under Armour is taking on long-term debt to fund expansion, possibly through acquisition.

5. Evaluate Under Armour, Inc.’s, overall performance for 2014 in terms of cash flows. Be as specific as you can. What other information would be helpful to you in making your evaluation?

Under Armour’s net cash flows from operations showed positive growth from 2012 to 2014.
Under Armour’s strong net cash flows allowed them to invest in the business by acquiring assets and strengthen their balance sheet by paying down long-term debt without taking on new debt.

The increase in cash and cash equivalents to $593,175,000 in 2014 shows a significant improvement in Under Armour’s liquidity. This cash position makes Under Armour a more stable company, able to better deal with a potential sales dip and places them in a better position to make acquisitions to fuel expansion. Growing cash and cash equivalents can also make Under Armour a takeover target as potential buyers can use Under Armour’s cash and cash equivalents to help finance a purchase.

 

Assignment

FIT – MGT 5000 – Week 6

Discussion Post

Consider three different businesses:

1. A bank

2. A magazine publisher

3. A department store

For each business, list all of its liabilities – both current and long-term. Then compare the three lists to identify the liabilities that the three business have in common. Also, identify the liabilities that are unique to each type of business.

Short-term liabilities or current liabilities do not differ greatly between industries when viewed from a balance sheet perspective, at least not at first glance.   Short-term liabilities are obligations due within twelve months and may include items such as short-term loans from banks including lines of credit, accounts payable balances, dividends and interest payable, bond maturity proceeds payable, consumer deposits, and reserves for taxes.  Long-term liabilities are obligations due outside of the twelve month window or the companies operating cycle should it happen to be longer than twelve months, these liabilities might include items such as debentures, loans, deferred tax liabilities and pension obligations.

 

Below we can clearly see both similarities and differences between short-term (current) and long-term liabilities by sector.

 

  • All three balance sheets represent both current (short-term) and long-term liabilities.
  • Macy’s and Time, Inc. list “Accounts payable and accrued liabilities” as their largest current (short-term) liability while Wells Fargo (a bank) shows deposits and borrowing (aka loans) as its largest short-term (current) liability.
  • On the Macy’s balance sheet we see “Merchandise accounts payable” as a current (short-term) liability which represents Macy’s cost of inventory (i.e. – liability to vendors).
  • On the Time, Inc. balance sheet we see “Deferred revenue” which likely represents pre-paid magazine subscriptions where Time, Inc. has collected money from the customer but has yet to ship magazines to the customer. Time, Inc. would recognize this revenue over the next N months as they ship magazines to customers.
  • Both Macy’s and Time, Inc. show deferred tax liability which is triggered when the business’s taxable income differ from the net income on the financial statements. This is typically triggered by the differences between financial accounting and tax accounting; deferred tax liabilities indicate future cash outflows.
  • All three balance sheets represent long-term debt which could be long-term loans, capital leases, pension liabilities, post-retirement healthcare liabilities, deferred compensation, deferred revenues, deferred income taxes, derivative liabilities, etc…
  • The Wells Fargo consolidated balance sheet shows a single line item for long-term debt but it is possible that this line item includes deferred revenue and/or income taxes.

 

Retail:  Macy’s (millions)
………………………………………………………………….. Jan 28, 2017 ………… Jan 30, 2016
Current Liabilities:
  Short-term debt…………………………………………….. $ 309 …………………. $ 642
  Merchandise accounts payable …………………….. 1,423 …………………. 1,526
  Accounts payable and accrued liabilities………… 3,563 …………………. 3,333
  Income taxes……………………………………………………  352 …………………..   227
    Total Current Liabilities………………………………… 5,647 …………………. 5,728
Long-Term Debt………………………………………………. 6,562 …………………. 6,995
Deferred Income Taxes……………………………………. 1,443 …………………. 1,477
Other Liabilities……………………………………………….. 1,877 …………………. 2,123

 

Banking:  Wells Fargo (millions)
………………………………………………………………. Dec 31, 2016 …………. Dec 31, 2015
Liabilities
Noninterest-bearing deposits…………………….. $ 375,967 …………….. $ 351,579
Interest-bearing deposits…………………………….   930,112 ……………….   871,733
  Total deposits………………………………………….. 1,306,079 ……………… 1,223,312
Short-term borrowings…………………………………    96,781 ………………..    97,528
Derivative liabilities………………………………………    14,492 ………………..    13,920
Accrued expenses and other liabilities (1)…….    57,189 ………………..    59,445
Long-term debt…………………………………………..   255,077 ……………….   199,536
  Total liabilities (4)…………………………………….. 1,729,618 ……………… 1,593,741

 

Publishing:  Time, Inc. (millions)
…………………………………………………………………………… Dec 31, 2016 ……… Dec 31, 2015
LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS’ EQUITY
Current liabilities
Accounts payable and accrued liabilities …………………. $ 598 ……………….. $ 683
Deferred revenue……………………………………………………..   403 ………………….   436
Current portion of long-term debt………………………………     7 ……………………     7
  Total current liabilities…………………………………………… 1,008 ………………… 1,126
Long-term debt……………………………………………………….. 1,233 ………………… 1,286
Deferred tax liabilities……………………………………………….   210 ………………….   242
Deferred revenue………………………………………………………    86 …………………..    89
Other noncurrent liabilities……………………………………….   328 ………………….   332
Commitments and contingencies (Note 15)

References

Macy’s Annual Reports/Fact Book. (n.d.). Retrieved June 08, 2017, from http://investors.macysinc.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=84477&p=irol-reportsannual
Time, Inc. SEC Filings. (n.d.). Retrieved June 08, 2017, from https://invest.timeinc.com/invest/financials/sec-filings/
Wells Fargo Annual Reports and Proxy Statements. (n.d.). Retrieved June 08, 2017, from https://www.wellsfargo.com/about/investor-relations/annual-reports/

Follow-up question

Thank you for your post. Many times current maturities of long-term debt are re-classed from long-term to current. Why is this reclassification important?

Response to follow-up question

Current Portion of Long-Term Debt (aka current maturity or current installment) is the amount of the principal that is payable within one year.  Debt which is re-classed from long-term to current may significantly impact a companies balance sheet.  Creditors and investor use current maturities to evaluate liquidity on a cash basis, the ratio of a company’s total cash and cash equivalents to its current liabilities = the company’s cash ratio.  This conservative metric which excludes other assets and accounts receivable is used to determine if a company has the ability to repay its short-term debt obligations.  Creditors may use this conservative metric when determining credit worthiness and investors may use this metric when making a determination regarding an investment in a company.

Assignments

FIT – MGT 5000 – Week 5

Discussion Post

1. Identify all the stakeholders of a corporation. A stakeholder is a person or a group who has an interest (that is, a stake) in the success of the organization.

By the definition of a stakeholder above or this definition of a stakeholder: “Stakeholders are individuals or groups who have an interest in an organization’s ability to deliver intended results and maintain the viability of its products and services.” It would be fair to say that a stakeholder would be an engaged party, this could be an owner, manager, government agency, supplier, contractor, competitor, customer, etc….
It would seem that the key difference between a stakeholder and a non-stakeholder is that the stakeholder has to be interested in the success of the organization. Not all stakeholders are created equal; they differ in importance and influence.

2. Do you believe that some entities are “too important to fail”? Should the federal government help certain businesses to stay afloat during economic recessions and allow others to fail?

This is a complicated question which delves deeply into many aspects of an individual’s belief system from a political, social and economic perspective. Given the complex nature of the question, I think that before postulating a response some background is required regarding who I am which likely provides a critical perspective on my opinion. With that said I think my answer is “I don’t know”, and I would never proclaim to know what the correct answer to this incredibly complex question for which I lack many of the variables required to solve the equation. I consider myself a fiscal conservative; thus it makes sense that I would believe in free market capitalism, the opportunities created via failures within the capitalistic system should self-heal as competition, and the free market economy does what it was intended to do. So where does this all get so complicated? Well, we live in a hybrid system where capitalism, socialism, and nepotism all coexist, very complex indeed. Anyone who followed the financial crisis in 2007 and who is five weeks into this course probably realizes at this point that if banks were highering nuclear physicists to build financial products that something was probably awry. I find LIFO shady, so it should come as no surprise that I think credit default swaps (http://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/creditdefaultswap.asp) represent absolute insanity. With this said, as a fiscal conservative, I also believe in consumer responsibility. We all now know that the financial crisis in 2007 was caused in large part by complex financial products like mortgage-backed securities, collateralized debt obligations, and credit default swaps.

The banking industry constructed these financial products, and in most cases, these products were not crafted by “bankers” but by mathematicians and physicists who made the products so complex that it obscured what was very risky and illogical. Why any consumer would think that a financial product called a “Power Option Arm” mortgage was a good idea baffles me, how any person can signup for a mortgage where your LTV can balloon to 120% (or anywhere past 100%) just seems crazy.

Here is the problem, we let all these financial products be created, the products were so complex that most didn’t understand them and greed took over. Greed manifested itself as what became known as the predatory lender. The question is who suffers when a corporation which is “too big/important to fail” is allowed to fail? I always think about Enron and the massive impact the failure of Enron had on so many people (social empathy kicks in here, I’m a capitalist not heartless). Personally, I don’t understand why any individual would rely on one company, the government or anyone else to protect their retirement but the reality is we all rely on and trust the monetary system. Maybe even this is changing with the emergence of crypto-currencies, but for now, we have the known, government regulated financial system that we need to place our faith in.

I’d like to say the government should have let AIG, Lehman Brothers. Merill Lynch and others fail, but the answer is I just don’t know what the right decision was. I happen to like Henry Paulson, and I think the financial sector and country were lucky to have such a well-connected operator as the Secretary of the Treasury during a time when deals seemingly needed to be made. In the case of the financial crisis of 2007, it was even more complicated given the involvement and burden of government-sponsored enterprises like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Maybe the government, who should be focused on the social good, should focus more on consumer education and consumer regulation and protection because it’s unlikely over the long-term that they will outwit large corporations who have objectives which are not focused on the social good. I’ll avoid lobbyists, campaign donors, super PACs, special interest groups, etc… but let’s face it the government is indirectly involved in the largest corporations in the world, and maybe the government is more accountable as a shareholder, who knows. I believe that we need to begin building a society where the educated consumers are the rule, the control of poorly architected financial products was in the hands of the masses, the masses could have created zero demand, but instead, the masses created massive demand.

3. Identify several measures by which a company may be considered deficient and in need of downsizing. How can downsizing help to solve this problem?

Declining market value or market capitalization. Declining market value may be caused by a lack of revenue or shrinking gross profits due to market commoditization, new entrants, increased competition, higher raw material cost, etc…, etc… A company may need to refocus, shedding commoditized businesses which rely on volume and focusing on niche high-value high gross profit businesses. A downsizing event will likely accompany this sort of pivot.

Declining sales and shrinking backlog which forecasts an impending cash flow problem. A company may be forced to downsize due to reduced sales volumes which and predicted cash flow issues.

Net losses where expenses exceed revenues. Downsizing may be one variable a company adjusts to rightsize expenses.

Antitrust issues and government involvement. E.g. – Standard Oil.
https://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/05/15/may-15-1911-supreme-court-orders-standard-oil-to-be-broken-up/?_r=0

Increasing labor costs. A shift in market requirements may require a different labor cost structure; this may cause a company to exit markets where lower cost labor was required to enter markets which have a higher labor cost. Downsizing an area of the business which is less profitable to reinvest in areas of the business which are more profitable and address market demand is advantageous.

Return on equity (ROE) which is the relationship between net income and common stockholders’ equity. A company has a fiduciary duty to deliver shareholder value. Return on equity is calculated as (Net income / Shareholder equity). To maximize ROE, a company may need to reduce costs to increase net income.

4. Debate the bailout issue. One group of students takes the perspective of the company and its stockholders, and another group of students takes the perspective of the other stakeholders of the company (the community in which the company operates and society at large).

This is an interesting one. Let’s look at TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program), the backbone of the financial bailout which was constructed by the United States government to allow the US government to purchase toxic assets and equities from financial institutions. For institutions that needed TARP to stay alive, it’s hard to argue against TARP from the perspective of the company, the shareholders or the stakeholders. I believe that the TARP program was looked at favorably by companies, shareholders, and individual stakeholders of organizations (e.g. AIG). This view may not have been shared by all stakeholders, for instance, if we assume that a competitor is a stakeholder the competitor may have a perspective that the United States government, via TARP removed the opportunity that should have been created by a free market economy.

AIG, Citigroup, and Bank of America all took TARP funds; they needed the funds to stay afloat. The Department of Treasury seemingly wanted all banks to take some level of TARP. TARP aimed at providing necessary liquidity but also aimed to restore confidence, the idea that all institutions took TARP funds would help to obscure the institutions who needed TARP funds to survive. Many institutions did not accept TARP funds, sighting a desire not to be beholden to the United States government. The questions here are as follows:
1) Did the bailout kill the free market economy?
2) Were organization who mismanaged their business rewarded while those who managed prudently had the spoils of a
free market economy taken from them because of government involvement?
3) What would have been the result of no bailout? Would the remaining institutions have been able to pick up the pieces? Or would a gaping hole now exist in the monetary system?

IMO the bailout was necessary.
1) Organizations who managed responsibly did so by not accruing toxic assets. Thus there was no reason to believe they would have picked up these assets after the institutions who held them collapsed.
2) Toxic assets (mortgages) would be abandoned by the consumer and the lender thus offering no incentive for remaining lenders to absorb these assets. This would devalue of all surrounding assets. This did happen, but TARP did help to stabilize the decline.

5. What is the problem with the government taking an equity position such as preferred stock in a private enterprise?

IMO the biggest issue with the government taking an equity position in a private enterprise is the apparent conflict of interest. How do you regulate that which you own? 🙂 Now, I am not an idealist, so I don’t get too wrapped around the axle here and I am also acutely aware that covert quid pro quo probably a bigger issue the government taking an overt equity position in a private enterprise. In 1916 Congress created the first government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) with the creation of the Farm Credit System, my point is that 2007 does not mark the dawn of evil government involvement in private enterprise. Congress established the idea of the GSE as a means to overcome “market imperfections.” There are a million different perspectives from which to argue government involvement in private enterprise but IMO the more government provides for the social good (e.g. national health care), the more government involvement we will see in private enterprise.

References

Blumberg, A. (2008, October 30). How Credit Default Swaps Spread Financial Rot. Retrieved June 01, 2017, from http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=96333239

Fontinelle, A. (2014, March 19). Troubled Asset Relief Program – TARP. Retrieved June 01, 2017, from http://www.investopedia.com/terms/t/troubled-asset-relief-program-tarp.asp

Harber, K. (2015, October 27). Principles of Management. Retrieved June 01, 2017, from https://open.lib.umn.edu/principlesmanagement/chapter/4-6-stakeholders/

Nielsen, B. (2008, April 08). Payment Option ARMs: A Ticking Time Bomb? Retrieved June 01, 2017, from http://www.investopedia.com/articles/mortgages-real-estate/08/payment-option-arm.asp?lgl=myfinance-layout-no-ads

What comes after those ellipses? (n.d.). Retrieved June 01, 2017, from http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/stakeholder.html

 

Assignments