# Horizontal Analysis Everything you need to know

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Proper analysis does not stop with the calculation of increases and decreases in amounts or percentages over several years. Such changes generally indicate areas worthy of further investigation and are merely clues that may lead to significant findings. Accurate predictions depend on many factors, including economic and political conditions; management’s plans regarding new products, plant expansion, and promotional outlays; and the expected activities of competitors.

Financial analysis is used for evaluating economic trends, creating financial policy, formulating long-term company goals, and designating projects or firms for investment. Horizontal analysis can also be used to compare similar assets or businesses to determine the best method for maximising profit. For example, a company with two different warehouses could compare the costs of each warehouse and determine which one earns a greater profit per square foot. Horizontal analysis is a type of financial analysis that looks at a company’s performance from one year to another.

## Criticisms of Horizontal Analysis

For example, the vertical analysis of an income statement results in every income statement amount being restated as a percent of net sales. If a company’s net sales were \$2 million, they will be presented as 100% (\$2 million divided by \$2 million). If the cost of goods sold amount is \$1 million, it will be https://marketresearchtelecast.com/financial-planning-for-startups-how-accounting-services-can-help-new-ventures/292538/ presented as 50% (\$1 million divided by sales of \$2 million). This tool is especially important if you’re using key performance indicators to measure your business’s performance and profitability. The approach lets you compare your business to your competitors’ businesses, regardless of size differences.

### What is the formula for horizontal analysis percentage?

Example of Horizontal Analysis

The percentage change is calculated by first dividing the dollar change between the comparison year and the base year by the line item value in the base year, then multiplying the quotient by 100.

Horizontal Analysis measures a company’s operating performance by comparing its reported financial statements, i.e. the income statement and balance sheet, to the financial results filed in a base period. All three of the primary financial statements — the income statement (or profit and loss statement), balance bookkeeping for startups sheet and statement of cash flow — can be put through common size analysis, which are shown in the examples below. Trend Analysis is a technique used to identify trends spanning different accounting periods by highlighting the changes in different financial statements when comparing items to each other.

## Horizontal Analysis vs. Vertical Analysis

Considering these factors along with horizontal analysis, vertical analysis, and trend analysis should provide a reasonable basis for predicting future performance. The major distinction between horizontal and vertical analysis is that horizontal analysis compares numbers from multiple reporting periods, whereas vertical analysis compares figures from a single reporting period. Horizontal analysis trend percentage can be found by finding the balance sheet, income statement and cash flow statement by the scheduling of current and fixed assets and statement of retained earnings.

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