Ratio analysis is referred to as the study or analysis of the line items present in the financial statements of the company. It can be used to check various factors of a business such as profitability, liquidity, solvency and efficiency of the company or the business.
Ratio analysis is mainly performed by external analysts as financial statements are the primary source of information for external analysts.
The analysts very much rely on the current and past financial statements in order to obtain important data for analysing financial performance of the company. The data or information thus obtained during the analysis is helpful in determining whether the financial position of a company is improving or deteriorating.
Categories of Ratio Analysis
There are a lot of financial ratios which are used for ratio analysis, for the scope of Class 12 Accountancy students. The following groups of ratios are considered in this article, which are as follows:
1. Liquidity Ratios: Liquidity ratios are helpful in determining the ability of the company to meet its debt obligations by using the current assets. At times of financial crisis, the company can utilise the assets and sell them for obtaining cash, which can be used for paying off the debts.
Some of the most commonly used liquidity ratios are quick ratio, current ratio, cash ratio, etc. The liquidity ratios are used mostly by creditors, suppliers and any kind of financial institutions such as banks, money lending firms, etc for determining the capacity of the company to pay off its obligations as and when they become due in the current accounting period.
2. Solvency Ratios: Solvency ratios are used for determining the viability of a company in the long term or in other words, it is used to determine the long term viability of an organisation.
Solvency ratios calculate the debt levels of a company in relation to its assets, annual earnings and equity. Some of the important solvency ratios that are used in accounting are debt ratio, debt to capital ratio, interest coverage ratio, etc.
Solvency ratios are used by government agencies, institutional investors, banks, etc to determine the solvency of a company.
3. Activity Ratio: Activity ratios are used to measure the efficiency of the business activities. It determines how the business is using its available resources to generate maximum possible revenue.
These ratios are also known as efficiency ratios. These ratios hold special significance for business in a way that whenever there is an improvement in these ratios, the company is able to generate revenue and profits much efficiently.
Some of the examples of activity or efficiency ratios are asset turnover ratio, inventory turnover ratio, etc.
Also read: What are the major types of Activity Ratios?
4. Profitability ratios: The purpose of profitability ratios is to determine the ability of a company to earn profits when compared to their expenses. A better profitability ratio shown by a business as compared to its previous accounting period shows that business is performing well.
The profitability ratio can also be used to compare the financial performance of a similar firm, i.e it can be used for analysing competitor performance.
Some of the most used profitability ratios are return on capital employed, gross profit ratio, net profit ratio, etc.
Use of Ratio Analysis
Ratio analysis is useful in the following ways:
1. Comparing Financial Performance: One of the most important things about ratio analysis is that it helps in comparing the financial performance of two companies.
2. Trend Line: Companies tend to use the activity ratio in order to find any kind of trend in the performance. Companies use data from financial statements that is collected from financial statements over many accounting periods. The trend that is obtained can be used for predicting the future financial performance.
3. Operational Efficiency: Financial ratio analysis can also be used to determine the efficiency of managing the asset and liabilities. It helps in understanding and determining whether the resources of the business is over utilised or under utilised.
This concludes our article on the topic of Ratio Analysis, which is an important topic in Class 12 Accountancy for Commerce students. For more such interesting articles, stay tuned to BYJU’S.