Red Flags in Financial Statements

by June 5, 2012

The Particulars

When: Sept. 27
Noon to 5 p.m.

Room 308 (Third Floor),
City University of New York
Graduate School of

219 W. 40th St.
New York, NY 10018
(Click to view map and directions.)

Closest subway stop is
Times Square – 42nd St.
There is a parking garage
across the street from the school;
approach from the west
because street is one-way.

Instructors: Tom Contiliano,
chief of client relations
at Bloomberg L.P., and
Michelle Leder,
editor and founder of

Host: Society of American
Business Editors and

This free workshop precedes
SABEW’s Fall
which begins at
6 p.m. Sept. 27 at CUNY.

SABEW offers a $50
rebate for its Fall
Conference to all
workshop attendees.

Registration is now closed.

Photo by flickr user tuchodi


Did you miss our live sessions?

Check out archived recordings and materials at the self-guided training page.

If you’ve been covering public companies for a while, you’ve probably written your share of stories about earnings and sales growth. And you’ve skimmed a myriad of SEC filings, hoping you haven’t missed some juicy story.

Perhaps like Peggy Lee, you’ve wondered, “Is That All There Is?” If so, this free workshop on Sept. 27 in advance of the SABEW Fall Conference in New York, is for you. It will give you new tools to analyze companies’ financial statements and the SEC filings known as the 10-K and 10-Q. You’ll be able to dig deeper, analyze cash flow, utilize ratios and identify red flags. In short, you’ll be able to come up with more enterprising stories on the companies you cover.

Sign up here for this free workshop.


This training is for reporters and editors who already have a basic understanding of and familiarity with financial statements and the SEC filings known as the 10-K and 10-Q. If you need a refresher, please see this self-guided training, which provides an introduction to financial statements. This primer on financials, by University of Kansas Professor Jimmy Gentry, also provides a good review. For more on SEC documents, please see this tutorial by Professor Chris Roush of the University of North Carolina.


  • How to analyze cash flow
  • How to use  ratios to monitor the financial health of the companies you cover
  • At least four red flags in Form 10-Qs that can result in good stories
  • At least four red flags in Form 10-Ks that can result in good stories
Tom Contiliano

Tom Contiliano


  • Noon to 12:30 p.m.: Registration
  • 12:30-12:40 p.m.: Welcome and introductions — Linda Austin
  • 12:40-2:40 p.m.: Building blocks of financial statements, including cash-flow analysis and forensic accounting via ratio analysis — Tom Contiliano
  • 2:40-3 p.m.: Break
  • 3-5 p.m.: Red flags in 10-Qs and 10-Ks — Michelle Leder


Named chief of client relations for Bloomberg News earlier this year, Tom Contiliano has reported directly to Bloomberg’s editor-in-chief since 2008 on financial and operational matters. He speaks internally and externally on global accounting topics and has appeared regularly on Bloomberg Television. Prior to joining Bloomberg in 1999, he worked for Coopers & Lybrand – and its successor PricewaterhouseCoopers – in the firm’s forensic accounting and audit practices. Trained as a CPA (inactive), he holds a bachelor’s in commerce and a master’s in accounting from the University of Virginia, where he also taught accounting.

Michelle Leder

Michelle Leder launched (originally in 2003 to take “a closer look at the things that companies try to bury in their routine SEC filings,” according to the website. Its launch coincided with the release of her book, Financial Fine Print: Uncovering a Company’s True Value. Morningstar bought the site in 2010, but Leder bought it back in 2012.

A longtime presenter for the Reynolds Center, she spent 10 years as a reporter and editor at daily newspapers in Florida, Connecticut and New York before launching a freelance career and the Footnoted website. She holds a degree in economics from Brandeis University. Leder will also teach a free webinar Nov. 13-15: SEC Filings Master Class.


This free workshop is sponsored by the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

The Reynolds Center is funded by a grant from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation in Las Vegas. Besides its free regional workshops and online training, the center runs, offering daily tips, training and resources for those who want to do a better job of covering business.

Those who successfully complete three regional workshops or webinars presented by the Reynolds Center are eligible to receive a “Circle of Achievement” award certificate.


Please email Reynolds Center Executive Director Linda Austin or call 602-496-9187.