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COURSE NAME: "Finance"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Fall 2020

EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MW 8:20-9:40 AM
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisites: FIN 201, FIN 202, EC 202, MA 208
OFFICE HOURS: 8:00-8:30 before class by appointment

This course examines both the theoretical and applied foundations required to make decisions in financial management. The main areas covered include an  overview of the financial system and the efficiency of capital markets, evaluation of financial performance, time value of money, analysis of risk and return, basic portfolio theory, valuation of stocks and bonds, capital budgeting, international financial management, capital structure management, and the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct.
This course covers topics in finance: financial statement analysis, the operations of financial markets and their efficiency, international financial transactions, time value of money, diversification and analysis of risk, valuation of financial assets (stocks and bonds), capital budgeting, capital structure, and an introduction to derivatives. Emphasis is given to both theory and application with particular attention paid to using spreadsheets for building simple financial models, working with a case study, and the writing of brief reports.

Please note that the course is a 300-level course in finance with a prerequisite of one year of accounting (financial and managerial), and a semester each of statistics and macroeconomics which includes college algebra - it is not an "introductory" class.  Students should be prepared to review some of this material as part of the course.  

The course materials are posted on Moodle, our leaning management system, available at http://moodle.johncabot.edu/ .

You have to create your own account, unless you already have one. Information on creating moodle accounts can be found at https://johncabot.libguides.com/moodle.  The course id is FIN301-1SP20

If you have technical problems at any stage of this process, get in touch with [email protected].


Understand the measurement of cash flow and its central role in financial analysis.

Learn how to evaluate firms' decision with simple financial models.

Learn time value of money concepts and their application to financial problems.

Learn how to value bonds and make investment decisions analyzing interest rate risk, yield curves, and reinvestment options.

Understand how to value stocks using the dividend growth models and methods of comparables.

Undertake a captial budeting case to learn capital budgeting concepts – NPV, IRR, MIRR, WACC - and learn to apply risk analysis to capital budgeting decisions using a financial model.

Review capital market history, understand the risk-return relationship (the CAPM) and the efficient markets hypothesis.

Learn the basics of portfolio theory and the risk-return tradeoff.

Learn about international finance to include interest rate parity, purchasing power parity, and international capital budgeting risks.

Learn about the basics of hedging to include forwards, futures, and options.

Understand the importance of ethical issues in finance and develop an awareness of the CFA Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct.

Develop stronger analytical skills that allow for the evaluation of financial decisions that include understanding their role of the overall economic environment.
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberCommentsFormatLocal BookstoreOnline Purchase
Corporate Finance 11th EditionRoss, Westerfield, and JordanMcGraw Hill978-0-07-786175-9 Previous editions will work.   

Exam 1Problem-solving, short answers.20%
Exam 2Problem-solving, short answers20%
Exam 3Case study on international capital budgeting: 3 to 4 page financial report plus in-class exam.20%
Final ExamComprehensive problem-solving exam.35%
External Funding Needed AssignmentGuideline provided in class. This assignment includes a short inclass quiz.5%

AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the course. 94 to 100 A; 90 to 93 A-
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments. 87 to 89 B+; 84 to 86 B; 80 to 83 B-
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings. 75 to 79 C+; 70 to 74 C; 65-69 C-
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail. 60 to 65 D+; 55 to 59 D; 50 to 54 D-
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant. Below 50.


Attendance at lectures and participation in class discussion is strongly encouraged. The final exam is comprehensive so students will have the option of dropping the lowest grades of  Exams 1, 2, or both and shifting the weights to the comprehensive final exam.

Students who miss a midterm exam (with a formal excuse from the Dean's Office) will shift the weight to the final exam; you will be given the midterm to take on your own time under exam conditions and I will informally assess it should you wish so that you can check on the progress of your studies.  No make-up exams will be given unless approved by the Dean's Office: see the University's policies for missed exams and refer to the Associate Dean.

Students must bring (and use) a basic calculator to class that includes the exponential function. During class no electronic devices are allowed unless there is a specific project we are working on which will be indicated by the instructor.   Cell phones and other electronic devices may not be used during an exam.  No eating in class.



As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.


This syllabus (including Exam Dates) may be subject to changes.  

SCHEDULE Please the Moodle Course for the specific dates.

 Chapter 1: Introduction to Corporate Finance

Chapter 2: Financial Statements and Cash Flows

Chapter 3: Financial Statement Analysis and Financial Models 

Chapter 4: Discounted Cash Flow Valuation

Chapter 8: Interest Rates and Bond Valuations (include the brief discussion long-term debt basics in Chapter 15: pp. 476-481)

Chapter 10: Risk and Return: Lessons from Market History
Chapter 11: Return and Risk: The Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) (leave out sections 11.7 and 11.8)

Chapter 9: Stock Valuation

Chapter 14: Efficient Capital Markets and Behavioral Challenges

Capital Budgeting Case

Chapter 5: Net Present Value and Other Investment Rules 

Chapter 6: Making Capital Investment Decisions
Chapter 13: Risk, Cost of Capital and Valuation (sections 13.8, 13.9)
Chapter 7: Risk Analysis, Real Options, and Capital Budgeting

Capital Budgeting Case Study (Chapters 6, 7, 13)
Chapter 31: International Corporate Finance

Chapter 25: Derivatives and Hedging Risk: Introduction.

See University schedule for day and time.