Get Started

 After you log in, you will see the main screen:

On the top left is the stock selection dropdown:

Here you select the company you want to analyze.  We cover over 4000 companies.  They are sorted alphabetically.  You can search for company names or their ticker symbols by entering the first part of the name in the little text box and clicking the search button.
Just below it, in a dark red, is the tree with the topics of study:

The default selection is Profitability Margins.  You can choose any topic you want, and over time, you will work through each of the topics in this tree.
In the middle, in blue, is the calculator:

It shows you what fields are needed for the current topic.  As you can see, for Profitability Margins, we need information about the company’s sales.  We will show you how to extract this information in the section Constructing Ratios: A Worked Example.  Fields with a green background are inputs; you have to put in those values.  Fields with a blue background are outputs; they are calculated for you. 
If you click on a term, such as Sales, you will see the definition of the term, such as:

The bottom half of the screen contains four panels:

The first panels two are viewers where you can see the financial statements of the company.  Each has a filing date dropdown and once you select the filing date, the statements filed on that date are listed just below. The selected statement is shown in the grid within the panel.  In the picture shown, you have selected the Consolidated Balance Sheet from the 10-Q filed by 1-800-FLOWERS on 11 May 2012 (The company was selected on the earlier, at the top).
The third panel also contains a web browser and also the Self-Assessment tab.  The browser lets you look up information on the internet.  We will describe the Self-Assessment tab in much more detail below.
The fourth panel contains a viewer and also the Cell Editor.  For many fields needed in the analysis, you have to be able to modify and manipulate information in the statements.  One example is calculating averages.  In several topics, the variable of interest is an average of two numbers.  The average is calculated in the cell editor.  The worked example on constructing ratios shows you some uses of the Cell Editor.