Zürich, Switzerland

Corporate Finance


Language: GermanStudies in German
Subject area: economy and administration
University website: www.fhnw.ch
Corporate Finance
Corporate finance is the area of finance dealing with the sources of funding and the capital structure of corporations, the actions that managers take to increase the value of the firm to the shareholders, and the tools and analysis used to allocate financial resources. The primary goal of corporate finance is to maximize or increase shareholder value. Although it is in principle different from managerial finance which studies the financial management of all firms, rather than corporations alone, the main concepts in the study of corporate finance are applicable to the financial problems of all kinds of firms.
Finance is a field that deals with the study of investments. It includes the dynamics of assets and liabilities over time under conditions of different degrees of uncertainties and risks. Finance can also be defined as the science of money management. Market participants aim to price assets based on their risk level, fundamental value, and their expected rate of return. Finance can be broken into three sub-categories: public finance, corporate finance and personal finance.
Nothing in finance is more fatuous and harmful, in our opinion, than the firmly established attitude of common stock investors regarding questions of corporate management. That attitude is summed up in the phrase: "If you don't like the management, sell your stock." [...] The public owners seem to have abdicated all claim to control over the paid superintendents of their property.
Benjamin Graham, World Commodities and World Currencies (1944)
The real reason that physicians are rotten investors is that it never occurs to them that finance is a science, just like medicine.
William J. Bernstein The Four Pillars of Investing (2002), Introduction, p. ix.
The world of finance is a mysterious world in which, incredible as the fact may appear, evaporation precedes liquidation.
Joseph Conrad, Victory: An Island Tale, part I, chap. 1 (1915)
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