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留学生report:讨论Annual Report的重要性

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讨论Annual Report的重要性

1.0 Executive summary

In an increasingly competitive business environment, it is growing important for a company to effectively promote and communicate its strategies and financial information. Besides, because market is not effective and information is asymmetry, annual financial report is playing a more and more important role in communication. In this report, we introduce the demands of shareholders and potential investors, interpret the key features of annual report which provides important corporate strategies and financial information to shareholders and potential investors and evaluate the GPT group’s annual financial report to identify if it provides truth, relevant, useful, complete, fairness information about corporate and if it can meet the demands of shareholders and potential investors. 

2.0 Introduction
The annual report refers to financial reports in the whole accounting year and other related documents. Financial and accounting reports generally include four reports: Balance sheet, Income statement, the cash flow statement, and the owner's equities. The annual report also includes the following information: company profile; accounting data and the business data; business report of chairman or general manager, including company management review, the major differences instructions between actual operating results and the profit forecast; the application instructions of previous raise funds; New Year's business development planning, etc.; report of the board of directors, including work summary of the board of directors, the stock and its shareholders, directors, supervisors and senior management personnel, major litigation, arbitration matters reports, etc.; the board of supervisors’ report; financial reports, including audit reports, financial statements, financial statements note; major events and their disclosure situation in company report; affiliated enterprise; other relevant material(Seetharaman and Subramanian, 2011). The annual report is very vital in modern business. it can play the most direct and controlled way to build the concept of all aspects of the enterprise(Goldstein,2005).
 
3.0 The demand of shareholders and investors in annual report
Timely and effective annual report disclosure can let investors understand the company's assets operation situation, the perfect degree of the governance structure and other aspects which can influence companies’ value creation ability, help investors identify and discover the real value of the company. In short, the purpose of shareholders and investors using annual report mainly to attain enough information which help make investment decision. 
Firstly, they need to analyze the profitability of companies to decide whether to invest this company. We can analyze the profitability of companies in annual report, because annual report can provide sales income, net profit, total assets, earnings per share, the share price, net asset per share and other related information which to some extent can indirectly reflect the profitability of companies. 
Secondly, they need to analyze the profitability, the change of share price and development prospects to decide whether or not to transfer shares. We have already mentioned profitability and the change of share price above, so we explain how to search useful information about development prospects from annual report. For example R&d input, etc. can represent development prospects of a company and we can find R&d input in annual report. 
Thirdly, they need to analyze the assets profit level, bankruptcy risk and competition ability in order to investigate operator performance, which mainly are shareholders information demands. Shareholders need to investigate operator performance to evaluate the performance of the executives, even employment, dismissal executives and so on.
Finally, they need to analyze financing situation to decide dividend distribution policy, which are also mainly shareholders information demands. Financing situation also can be analyzed by annual report (Stanton & Stanton, 2002). Therefore, shareholders and investors need so many information for their decision-making and annual are increasingly important. 

4.0 Key features of annual report 
Although different companies have different characteristics of annual report, they also have common key features. Firstly, most companies choose sheet and charts to show its necessary financial data and others information is showed by words. Such as, Balance sheet, Income statement and Cash flow statement are presented by charts or graphs, while report notes and other related information are presented by words (ASA, 2011).
Secondly, all annual report should be based on four basic Accounting Assumptions: Main body of accounting assumption, going-concern assumption, accounting periodicity assumption and monetary measurement assumption. Accounting entity refers to specific unit of accounting service work, is the space range of accounting recognition, measurement and reporting. In order to provide information which reflects financial position, operating results and cash flows to help decision-making, annual report must define the space range of accounting recognition, measurement and reporting. Going-concern assumption refers to the accounting subject production and operating activities of the terms will continue and in the foreseeable future will not collapse settlement. In accounting periodicity assumption, the enterprise shall divide accounting period, account and prepare financial reports. Monetary measurement assumption refers to by money value reflects the accounting subject production and operation activities.
Finally, truth and fairness should be emphasized in every corner of the annual report. Only annual report is truth and fairness, is it useful to investors and other potential investors. 

5.0 Evaluating GPT’s Annual Financial Report in 2011
GPT’s Annual Financial Report in 2011 mainly includes following sections: corporate governance, annual financial report of general property trust, annual financial report of GPT management holdings limited, supplementary information and directory (GPT Group, 2011).
5.01 Corporate governance
This section has introduced GPT’s basic corporate governance structure and mainly showed following contents: role and responsibilities of the board and delegation to management; structure of the board add value; promoting ethical and responsible decision-making; safeguard integrity in financial reporting; making timely and balanced disclosure; respecting the rights of shareholders; recognizing and manage risk; remunerating fairly and responsibly. After learn it, we can know that GPT’s corporate governance structure relatively perfect.
5.02 Annual financial report of general property trust
This section mainly includes directors’ report; auditor’s independence declaration; financial report, including consolidated statement of comprehensive income, consolidated statement of financial position, consolidated statement of changes in equity, consolidated statement of cash flow; directors’ declaration and independent audit report. We can know that GPT’s Annual financial report includes necessary contents. Net income in 2011 is lower than that in 2010 and total assets in 2011 are lower than that in 2010.
5.03 Annual financial report of GPT management holdings limited
This section contents have shown that Annual financial report of general property trust management holdings limited. It also show remuneration report in 2011, GPT’s remuneration strategy and key issues and changes made in 2011.
5.04 supplementary information and directory
This section is mainly supplementary information of annual financial report and plays a role of explanation, it including following contents: payments to GPT security holders, GPT issue of securities, spread of security holders as at 27 January 2012, substantial holders in GPT as at 27 January 2012, 20 largest GPT security holders as at 27 January 2012 and directory.

6. Conclusion
In short, timely and effective annual report disclosure can let investors understand the company's assets operation situation, the perfect degree of the governance structure and other aspects which can influence companies’ value creation ability, help investors identify and discover the real value of the company. This report has introduced the demands of shareholders and potential investor, interpret the key features of annual report which provides important corporate strategies and financial information to shareholders and potential investors and evaluate the GPT group’s annual financial report.
 
7.0 References
Goldstein,Stuart Z (2005), Unleasing the power of the annual report at DTCC. Strategic communication management, ProQuest Central pg.30
The GPT Group (2011), www.dxlwwang.com/essay/ “GPT Annual Financial Report 2011”, The GPT Group, pp18-20
Seetharaman, A & Subramanian, R (2011), Navigating the web of financial reporting, Arumogam Seetharaman and Ramaiyer Subramanian,Multimedia University, pp3
Shareholder Expect Policy (2011), Australian Shareholders’ Association, pp4
Stanton, P & Stanton, J. (2002), “Corporate annual reports: research perspectives used”, Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, pp. 478-500.

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