Publication Details

This article was originally published as Collier, H, Grai, T, Haslitt, S and McGowan, CB, An example of the use of financial ratio analysis: the case of Motorola, Decision Sciences Institute Conference, Florida, 2-6 March 2004.


In this paper, we demonstrate the use of actual financial data for financial ratio analysis. We construct a financial and industry analysis for Motorola Corporation. The objective is to show students exactly how to compute ratios for an actual company. This paper demonstrates the difficulties in applying the principles of financial ratio analysis when the data are not homogeneous as is the case in textbook examples. We use Motorola as an example because the firm has several segments, two of which account for the majority of sales and represent two industries (semi-conductor and communications) that have different characteristics. The case illustrates the complexity of financial analysis.