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Finance is the foundation of every business existing globally. If a company has a strong base in finance, the chances of them succeeding also increase. It is a broad field dealing with multiple activities often linked with credit & debt, money, investment, banking, capital markets etc. Hence, starting a career in this field is quite challenging. And what’s more challenging is how you represent yourself in an interview. Finance interview questions inspect the candidate’s in-depth knowledge of financial concepts. Moreover, the interview examines how concisely you can solve real-world problems.
If you are preparing to crack the interview in the finance field discussed above and looking for the finance interview questions, then you are in the right place. Finance offers different job roles, whether a top position of Financial Advisor and Credit Analyst or an intern starting in the same domain. Further, in the blog, we have put together the Top 20 Finance Interview Questions and Answers which will assist in building up confidence. Further, you will get an idea of what an actual finance interview question would look like.
Top 20 Finance Interview Questions and Answers:
1. Explain the term Finance.
Finance is a broad term that primarily deals with money-related activities such as investing, lending, borrowing, budgeting, saving, capital markets, stocks etc. However, if we talk about finance in simpler terms, it is the study and management of a large amount of money. Furthermore, it has three types: public, corporate, and personal.
2. Can you explain the financial statements?
Financial statements are documents written to verify the financial performance of a business. In particular, investors and creditors analyse financial statements to estimate a company’s financial position, which forms the basis of their financial decisions. Also, the four major financial statement reports are the balance sheet, cash flow statement, income statement, and statement of shareholder’s equity.
3. Can you simply define the cash flow statement?
A cash flow statement is a report that assists in managing the sources of cash and how the cash has been used in a particular period in an organisation (the inflows and outflows of cash). This statement also demonstrates the sources of incoming and outgoing funds. Similarly helps in assessing a company’s performance.
4. Define capital budgeting? List its most commonly used techniques.
The process of assessing which projects to prioritize over others is known as capital budgeting. The capital budget also determines the projects the company will finance.
The most majorly used techniques include:
1. Traditional techniques include Pay Back Method and Average Rate of Return Method.
2. Modern techniques include the Net Present Value (NPV) Method, Internal Rate of Return (IRR) Method and Profitability Index (PI) Method.
5. What do you understand by the term Economic Value Added? How to calculate it?
Economic added value (EVA) is a financial measure that shows the profitability of a company’s projects after deducting capital costs. Also called the Economic Profit of a business.
EVA expressed in the formula –
EVA = NOPAT – ( capital which is invested * WACC)
Where NOPAT is net operating profit after tax, WACC is the weighted average cost of capital, and similarly invested capital is debt + lease + equity.
6. Define liquidity ratio, mention its types and explain what is a good liquidity ratio?
A liquidity ratio is one of the financial ratios which indicates a company’s ability to pay off its short-term liabilities.
The three types of commonly used liquidity ratios are:
1. Current Ratio
2. Quick ratio
3. Cash ratio
Statistics show a good liquidity ratio is greater than 1. It determines that a company is doing good financially.
7. What do you understand by the term Net Present Value (NPV)?
The difference between the cash inflows (present value) and cash outflows ( present value) in a given period is known as NPV. In finance, NPV valuation has a broad use. It helps financial analysts determine the return on investment. NPV analyze the profitability of a project, or it could be any investment. Furthermore, if the NPV of a project or investment is positive, its rate of return will be higher than the discount rate.
8. Define the dividend growth model.
A dividend growth model is a valuation model that indicates a stock’s fair value for a company’s stock, usually based on current dividends and expected future dividend growth. The dividend growth model assesses whether a company is overvalued or undervalued. It is calculated by subtracting the expected dividend from the required rate of return.
9. Define the term payback period.
In capital budgeting, the payback period indicates the time it takes to regain the money spent on an investment. In other words, the faster an investment pays itself back, the more attractive it becomes. Calculating the payback period is simple and can be done by dividing the initial investment by the average cash flow.
10. Explain NIFTY and SENSEX.
Both Nifty and Sensex are stock market indexes. However, the calculation method is different. A stock market index typically demonstrates the performance of a stock market. A stock index is built by combining stocks of the same type. Bombay Stock Exchange’s stock index, known as Sensex, stands for Stock Exchange Sensitivity Index. Nifty is the National Stock Exchange Index. It stands for National Stock Exchange Fifty.
Before we dive into another set of finance interview questions and answers, here is a youtube video that has described the scope of AI in finance.
11. What is the leverage ratio and solvency ratio?
Leverage ratio is any type of financial ratio that indicates how much debt a business entity has with some other account on the balance sheet, income statement, or income statement. cash flow statement. These ratios show how a company’s assets and businesses are financed (with debt or equity). Whereas, solvency ratios are an important part of financial analysis because they help determine whether a company has enough cash to meet its debt commitments.
12. Can you explain debentures?
A debenture is a financial instrument having no collateral which further lacks security. They’re issued to the public as an agreement to repay the borrowed money. Debentures have a fixed term and a fixed interest rate.
13. Can you explain cost accountancy?
Cost accounting attempts to capture the full cost of production of a business by measuring both variable and fixed costs, such as rental costs. The purpose is to develop procedures for recording, classifying, and allocating costs materials, labour and overheads. Moreover, it determines the correct cost of items and services.
14. Define return on equity.
Return on Equity (ROE) is a financial ratio that efficaciously measures a company’s rate of return on common shares held by shareholders. Moreover, in simpler terms, it determines how well a company is managing the capital that shareholders have invested in the company. A high ROE indicates that a company is operating more efficiently to generate profits.
15. Explain deferred liability tax and how is it calculated?
When calculating deferred liability tax, one subtracts income tax payable from reported income tax. This is because deferred liability tax is created by the timing difference between when taxes are accrued and when they are paid. It’s a liability recorded on the company’s balance sheet and will be paid at a later date.
16. Define hedging.
Hedging is a risk management strategy often used by investors in the stock market to protect their portfolios. To sum up, it reduces the associated risk and often results in a loss of expected return.
17. Can you define the put option?
A put option is one of the major types of options. In simple terms, it is a contract that gives the option buyer a right, but not the authority to sell the underlying security at a pre-decided price and time. Put options trades on a variety of underlying assets such as stocks, currencies and commodities.
18. Describe goodwill.
When one company acquires another company, it gains an intangible asset called goodwill. It represents a value that usually grants the obtaining organisation an aggressive advantage. Goodwill includes the value of a company’s brand name, strong customer base, good customer relationships, and good employee relations.
19. What is financial risk management?
It is the process of analysing and managing financial threats that a business may face now or in the future. Moreover, the goal is to discover what risks you are willing to take, and what hazards you want to avoid. And how to create a cautious approach.
20. What are cash equivalents?
Cash equivalents are short-term investment securities. Legal currency, banknotes, and coins are examples of cash. Cash and its equivalents are different from other assets such as securities and accounts receivable. However, certain securities are classified as cash equivalents depending on a company’s accounting policies.
Down below is the youtube video if you want to brush up on finance interview questions. (https://youtu.be/aVenjYqVses)
To sum up, Financial interview questions evaluate a candidate’s in-depth knowledge of finance, ranging from skills to experience. Apart from the technical questions, the interviewee can interrogate you by asking a few behavioural questions. Regardless of the finance job role, preparing for an interview gives you an edge by building confidence. Hence, demonstrating your ability to analyse financial reports, create financial models, and evaluate investment opportunities will prove your worth to potential employers. As a result, assisting you in achieving your goals.
If you are looking for a course to upskill in finance, the well-known institution Henry Harvin provides Dual Degree in M.com Accounting & Finance + ACCA. The whole course provides in-depth knowledge of finance and accounting. It further helps the learners in gaining deep insight into financial modelling, fintech etc. The curriculum and content of this course make it easy for students to enter a career in finance and accounting. You will learn how to solve real-world complex problems.
The time has changed, and anyone can learn anything. The resources and content are just one click away. Further, many institutions provide online courses even for those working professionals wanting to change careers.
It depends on the company and job position you are applying to. However, the interview is quite challenging. The employer checks how well-versed one is in finance.
Finance is a broad field and offers high-paying job roles such as Financial analyst, investment banker, management consultant, etc.
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