Description of the Project:
• As the stock analysts for a Pension Plan, your team has been assigned the task of giving a stock recommendation to the firm’s investment committee.
• In this project your team is asked to choose and value a publicly-traded company and give an investment recommendation about the company from the viewpoint of a stock investor.
• This project is designed to primarily apply the concepts, models, and techniques learned in the course. Deliverables:
1. A written report of no more than ten pages printed in 12-point Times New Roman font with one-inch margins. Supporting calculations, graphs, and other exhibits do not count toward the ten page maximum and may be included as appendices. The format of the written report is as follows:
a. Executive Summary
b. Table of Contents
c. Macro Environment Analysis and Forecast
d. Company and Industry Characteristics and Description
e. Analysis of Past Performance
f. Forecast of Future Performance
g. Valuation
h. Recommendation
i. References
j. Appendices
2. Team Presentation—10 minutes + 5 minutes of Q&A from the audience

Steps in this Valuation Project:
1. Macroeconomic Analysis and Forecast
a. Identify the key macro-environmental factors.
b. Assess the likely impact of macro-environmental factors on capital (stock and bond) markets
c. Based on the analysis above and other economic forecasts (such as the Congressional Budget Office’s The Budget and Economic Outlook: 2014 to 2024 and the Economic Report of the President), discuss the implications of your analysis and economic forecast(s) on the industry that you have chosen.
2. Company and Industry Characteristics and Description
a. Industry Characteristics and Description. Describe the nature of the industry and discuss pertinent facts such as its competitive environment, recent and expected trends, current and anticipated regulation, the impact of technological developments, etc., …
b. Company Characteristics and Description. Discuss the nature of the business including its competitive environment, regulatory environment, technological environment, management and personnel issues, etc., …
3. Analysis of Past Performance (of PepsiCo)
a. Publicly available information on the company is the starting point. Two good sources of financial and other information are Morningstar.com or Finance.Yahoo.com (but there are many others).
b. Historical financial information should be integrated with non-financial information about the company. In other words, provide a relevant narrative describing the key events influencing performance during the past five years.
c. Computation and analysis of key financial ratios, especially in comparison with the industry and/or major competitors.
4. Forecast of Future Performance
a. Based on your macro environmental analysis and forecast, your company and industry analysis, and your analysis of your firm’s past performance, forecast your firm’s sales growth during the next five years. This step should include an evaluation/discussion of your assumptions as well as the company’s strategic position.
b. Prepare Pro Forma financial statements using a forecast horizon of 5 years.
5. Valuation
a. Estimate the Intrinsic Value of your firm’s stock using the Free Cash Flow Valuation Model (FCF).
i. Using a forecast horizon of five years, project future free cash flows (as well as the terminal value at the end of five years if relevant) – be sure to list and discuss assumptions you made in deriving these values.
ii. Estimate an appropriate discount rate/required return (the Weighted Average Cost of Capital if you use the Total Firm FCF or the Cost of Equity is you use the Free Cash Flows to Equity holders) and use these required return measures to estimate the intrinsic value of your stock.
iii. Discuss how sensitive you value estimates are to changes in your assumptions and discuss the key drivers of value for your company.
iv. Given your company’s characteristics, value and competitive position, evaluate the most promising avenues for increasing the firm’s value.
b. Relative Valuation
i. Estimate the market value of your stock using the Earnings Multiplier Model and prepare of a list of “comparable” companies using a set of criteria that your team deems appropriate.
ii. Evaluate the value of your company against your major competitors (you are required to use the P/E valuation, Price/Book Value, and/or other relative valuation metrics of your own choosing).
6. Recommendation
a. Make a final recommendation regarding your company’s stock—would you buy, sell, or hold?
b. Present five reasons for your recommendation. Your reasons should be rank-ordered in terms of importance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sample Solution

Sample solution

Dante Alighieri played a critical role in the literature world through his poem Divine Comedy that was written in the 14th century. The poem contains Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. The Inferno is a description of the nine circles of torment that are found on the earth. It depicts the realms of the people that have gone against the spiritual values and who, instead, have chosen bestial appetite, violence, or fraud and malice. The nine circles of hell are limbo, lust, gluttony, greed and wrath. Others are heresy, violence, fraud, and treachery. The purpose of this paper is to examine the Dante’s Inferno in the perspective of its portrayal of God’s image and the justification of hell. 

In this epic poem, God is portrayed as a super being guilty of multiple weaknesses including being egotistic, unjust, and hypocritical. Dante, in this poem, depicts God as being more human than divine by challenging God’s omnipotence. Additionally, the manner in which Dante describes Hell is in full contradiction to the morals of God as written in the Bible. When god arranges Hell to flatter Himself, He commits egotism, a sin that is common among human beings (Cheney, 2016). The weakness is depicted in Limbo and on the Gate of Hell where, for instance, God sends those who do not worship Him to Hell. This implies that failure to worship Him is a sin.

God is also depicted as lacking justice in His actions thus removing the godly image. The injustice is portrayed by the manner in which the sodomites and opportunists are treated. The opportunists are subjected to banner chasing in their lives after death followed by being stung by insects and maggots. They are known to having done neither good nor bad during their lifetimes and, therefore, justice could have demanded that they be granted a neutral punishment having lived a neutral life. The sodomites are also punished unfairly by God when Brunetto Lattini is condemned to hell despite being a good leader (Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). While he commited sodomy, God chooses to ignore all the other good deeds that Brunetto did.

Finally, God is also portrayed as being hypocritical in His actions, a sin that further diminishes His godliness and makes Him more human. A case in point is when God condemns the sin of egotism and goes ahead to commit it repeatedly. Proverbs 29:23 states that “arrogance will bring your downfall, but if you are humble, you will be respected.” When Slattery condemns Dante’s human state as being weak, doubtful, and limited, he is proving God’s hypocrisy because He is also human (Verdicchio, 2015). The actions of God in Hell as portrayed by Dante are inconsistent with the Biblical literature. Both Dante and God are prone to making mistakes, something common among human beings thus making God more human.

To wrap it up, Dante portrays God is more human since He commits the same sins that humans commit: egotism, hypocrisy, and injustice. Hell is justified as being a destination for victims of the mistakes committed by God. The Hell is presented as being a totally different place as compared to what is written about it in the Bible. As a result, reading through the text gives an image of God who is prone to the very mistakes common to humans thus ripping Him off His lofty status of divine and, instead, making Him a mere human. Whether or not Dante did it intentionally is subject to debate but one thing is clear in the poem: the misconstrued notion of God is revealed to future generations.

 

References

Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). Dante’s inferno: Seven deadly sins in scientific publishing and how to avoid them. Addiction Science: A Guide for the Perplexed, 267.

Cheney, L. D. G. (2016). Illustrations for Dante’s Inferno: A Comparative Study of Sandro Botticelli, Giovanni Stradano, and Federico Zuccaro. Cultural and Religious Studies4(8), 487.

Verdicchio, M. (2015). Irony and Desire in Dante’s” Inferno” 27. Italica, 285-297.