Top 4 Points to Consider while Writing a Report for a Finance Assignment
College-level writing calls for several if not many finance reports to be written in the course of study. While most finance topics are very technical, you may get assignments needing simple reports and others requiring more technical reports. The key to writing successful reports for finance assignments is to follow the instructions given. Instructions give the tone and outline of your report.
Reports in finance are a way for you to show your understanding of the different financial phenomenon and their application to everyday problems. They are written for a very specific purpose and audience and for that reason should be factual, simple, and concise.
Here are 4 points you should consider while writing your report
1. Structure and format of the report
The format in which you write your report will either increase or decrease its readability. A report that is too crowded and disorganized will likely repel your instructor which is not what we want with your assignment. Always ensure that your report is presented in a layout that is appropriate and that is per the objectives stated in the research questions. The structure or format you use to present your report is highly influenced by the instructions given in the brief.
You should consider the structure requirements and finetune your report findings to meet them. Say, for example, your report title was investment options for real estate and only required you to indicate supporting texts and formulas for this. That means that your report structure will have to accommodate the formulas and mathematical calculations necessary as well as have text that corroborates this. Always present the facts of your report in a descending manner, starting with the most important points.
For a report to be well executed, ensure that the structure requirements such as font and font size, headings and sub-headings required and the framework are well done. Where the report calls for tables and figures to explain financial trends, ensure that this is well indicated. Increase the readability of your report by presenting only one idea per sentence clearly and concisely. Avoid sentences and paragraphs that are too long and irrelevant. Finance may sometimes require you to have mathematical problems and solutions in your report, so ensure that your calculations can be followed from start to finish.
2. Instructions given in the finance assignment
Instructions given will determine the language, format, and execution of your assignment. When starting your report, it is important to read and understand the instructions as they give the direction that your assignment is supposed to take. For example, a report asking you to discuss portfolio analysis in theory and one requiring you to examine returns on investment (ROI) with practical examples would require completely different executions.
Before you begin writing your finance report, consider any limitations that the instructions may have. Your report instructions could have a requirement in terms of the voice used in the research paper, or limit the use of certain resources in research. Instructions simply dictate what you can and cannot do in your report. Read and understand them so that you do not come up with a report that is not acceptable to your instructor. They are also an indication of how many marks each section of your report will be worth which is important to know when figuring out where to heavily focus your research.
Pay attention to instructions that seem specific in your report, for example, some reports require you to include an abstract while others do not. Also, consider who the end users of your report are to determine the language to be used in the report. Your audience dictates whether your report will be formal or informal as well as whether to include technical terms and solutions in your report.
3. Sources used for research
Most terms used in finance have a universal meaning, therefore, ensure that the sources you use for research are reliable and credible. The credibility of your sources will make or break your report. Do not use information that is irrelevant in your report as this makes the report also seem irrelevant. You may have a report that is clear and concise and one that follows the instructions given, but fail your finance assignment due to inaccuracy and irrelevance of the contents of your report.
For example, if your report topic was about the different methods of corporate restructuring, ensure that the sources you use to compile this information can be verified. Ensure that all the methods that you will list in your report are universally accepted and can be confirmed by other authors and sources. Also, ensure that the sources used are consistent. This will make your points and ideas have a flow which makes for good readability in your report.
Consider using web pages and books in your research that are accredited to improve the accuracy of the data you have in your report. For example, you do not want to be writing about mergers while referencing a blog written on say Facebook, you instead what to get your information about mergers from a verified journal or book. One that you can confidently reference in your report
4. Contents of the report
While writing your report, ensure that the contents answer the question posed in the research topic. It is important for the findings of your research together with all the facts presented to address the main research problem. For example, for the topic say, are mergers the best method of corporate restructuring, the body of your report should go into detail either supporting or denying this statement. Remember to have consistency in your content. You cannot agree in one section of your report and disagree in another. A good report is consistent from start to finish.
Also, ensure that the contents of your report are presented logically. Your ideas should have a flow. In our above example, you cannot begin explaining how to form a merger without first explaining what a merger is. Logically flowing reports make it easier for the instructor to go through your work and also make it easier for you to tell if you have made any errors while writing. Present your findings in ways that are quick to understand and employ the use of tables, graphs, charts, and figures especially to represent the relationship between data in finance.
Avoid repetition and redundancy in your report and instead, aim for short and correct sentences. Avoid empty words and ensure that your facts are 100% right. Originality is also something to consider while writing your report. Your instructor does not expect original ideas in your report but that does not mean that you should copy everything from the web or books. Ensure that you paraphrase your work to avoid plagiarism. Proper referencing styles (as instructed by the tutor) must be used in order to score good on the report. Also, ensure that the contents of your report have the appropriate length. This should be long enough to convey the research findings, but not too long that some parts are irrelevant. It should not also be too short that most of the findings are not well explained. If there is a brief as to how many words the report should have, ensure to follow that.