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Financial Accounting Information for Decisions.

Financial Accounting Information for Decisions, 6e, Robert W. Ingram, and Thomas L. Albright, Mason, Ohio. THOMSON South-Western, 2007. ISBN: 0-324-31341-1, pp. xxix, 603, cloth.

The Sixth Edition of Financial Accounting Information for Decisions by Ingram and Albright is aimed at an undergraduate introductory financial accounting course that focuses on financial accounting uses and interpretation rather than procedures. The authors have set a goal for the textbook package to serve an excellent resource for launching students "toward becoming business decision-makers of tomorrow'.

The textbook has an innovative organization around business activities and their impacts on business decisions. There are two main sections of the text- each comprising seven chapters-Appendix A on General Mills' 2004 Annual Report Excerpts, and Appendix B on sources of information about companies and industries. The chapters in Section 1 deal with business activities and most topics covered in traditional financial accounting textbooks. Built on the foundations of business activities introduced in the text's first section, the second section takes a user-orientation to financial accounting information and decisions.

The text's Section 1 is titled 'The Accounting Information System' and has seven chapters. The first chapter provides an introduction to accounting, its role in business organizations and decisions, and ethics. An introduction to Excel is presented as an Appendix to Chapter 1. The second chapter links the basic accounting equation to the business entity's financing, investing and operating activities and their measurement and reporting. An Appendix to this chapter provides an orientation to debits and credits. The accounting equation is used throughout the text for analysis and recording of business transactions and works well with spreadsheets. Income measurement and accounting cycle are discussed in Chapter 3.

While Chapter 4 is on the form and interpretation of Balance Sheet and Income Statement, Chapter 5 is a comprehensive introduction to reporting and interpretation of the important area of cash flows. The sixth chapter gives an overview of contemporary regulation of accounting, standard-setting and FASB's Conceptual Framework, Sarbanes Oxley Act of 2002, corporate Annual Reports, and Internal Control. Computerized accounting systems and their structures are presented in Chapter 7.

The text's Section 2 comprising seven chapters is entitled 'Analysis and Interpretation of Financial Accounting Information'. While chapter eight introduces the time value of money, chapters nine though fourteen detail the business activities and their analysis and interpretation. Chapters nine and ten deal with respectively financing activities and their analysis, chapters eleven and twelve are on investing activities and their analysis, and chapters thirteen and fourteen discuss operating activities and their analysis.

There are many strong features of the text including its user-orientation, a lucid writing style, coverage of contemporary topics, use of the basic accounting equation and spreadsheets for analyses and recording of transactions, employment of web-support and other technology as teaching/learning tools, real-world examples, in-chapter learning aids, multicolor printing, and a comprehensive teaching/learning package. However, the text could be enhanced by inclusion of real-world business cases in chapter assignments, integrated hypothetical case-problem illustration(s) throughout the text chapters perhaps as chapter appendices, and narrated solutions on the companion website to select problems.

Learning aids employed within each chapter include the chapter-opening Thinking Beyond the Question that is expanded in the chapter, Food for Thought, Objectives, Learning Notes, Self-Study Problems and their solutions, Case in Point, summary Review, extensive assignment material that includes ethics and spreadsheets, and linkages to the companion and other websites.

The teaching package for the instructor includes Cooperative Learning and Instructor's Resource Guide, Solutions Manual, Test Bank, Instructor's Resource CDROM with Exam View, Solution Transparencies, Instructor's Manual for the Annual Report Project and Readings, and Thomson NOW online teaching and learning system that includes additional teaching resources. The learning package accompanying the text comprises Study Guide and Forms, Annual Report Project and Readings, and Thomson NOW online teaching and learning system that includes additional learning resources.

This textbook package deserves a serious consideration for an introduction to financial accounting course that focuses on concepts, uses, and decision-making. The authors have met their goal of providing a textbook package that helps students 'toward becoming business decision-makers of tomorrow'.

Nishat Abbasi

Associate Professor

Associate Professor of Accounting
COPYRIGHT 2009 Indian Journal of Economics and Business
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Author:Abbasi, Nishat
Publication:Indian Journal of Economics and Business
Article Type:Book review
Date:Jun 1, 2009
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