At the heart of any business is the ability to track, invest, and manage money. Without the ability to do these three things successfully and honestly, a business will not survive, no matter how good their product or service is. A clear understanding of how money flows into and out of an organization allows us to attract investors, identify investment opportunities, decide with what organizations to form relationships or partnerships, and even manage your own personal finances.

In this course, you will examine the different roles of accounting and finance and how each influences a business. You will analyze the financial documents used by accounting and finance in all businesses: the income statement and the balance sheet. Understanding the numbers on these documents will allow you to interpret financial information to inform decision making in numerous personal and professional capacities.

Investing in stocks is a critical strategy in any financial portfolio, whether personal or professional. Yet how do you know whether a stock is a smart buy or not? You don't — until you do the research.

If you're able to understand a company, you are well on your way to understanding its stock. In this course, you will practice doing the financial analysis work needed to identify profitable stocks worth investing in. You will examine data in online public sources such as SEC 10K and 10Q reports, earnings releases, press releases, and investor conference materials to score fundamental information about the company and stock you have chosen to study. By evaluating a company's position in the marketplace, you can begin forecasting the performance of its stock. Exploring different valuation techniques, you will practice making a target price to compare whether the stock's current market value is high or low relative to the future predicted value of the stock. Along the way, you will incorporate storytelling into your research to summarize your findings and curate a compelling investment thesis. With this investment thesis to advance your claims, you will curate a stock pitch and communicate your preliminary recommendation of whether to buy, sell, or hold a chosen stock.

In a complex financial system, it can be difficult to determine the foundation of a successful portfolio management strategy. Throughout this course, you will gain tools and knowledge to guide you toward managing money like a professional. You will explore asset classes, sectors, and styles, and investigate how to balance risks and returns to match individual circumstances. You will explore the underlying principles of portfolio management and immediately gain opportunities to apply these theories. Carefully crafted Excel templates are provided for you to evaluate assets and experiment with various allocations. By completing a hands-on course project with these tools, you will build recognition of optimal methods to successfully manage your investment portfolios, setting you up for success in a complex market.

Since the advent of the internet, programmers have been trying to figure out how to create a [digital] world in which people anywhere - even complete strangers - can transact directly with one another safely and efficiently. In essence, they have been trying to recreate the bedrock of civilization: an orderly system of bookkeeping that allows people to trust each other's claims about what they own, what they owe, and what they are owed. For most of the digital age, this “trust” has been facilitated by third parties such as banks, governments, or credible companies that are willing to guarantee that a transaction is valid and secure. But transactions via third parties are slow and expensive, and they cannot be verified by just anyone, which opens the door to fraud and theft.

Today, the notion of a secure and trusted third party in a digital world isn't purely mythical. And in fact, it's exactly what blockchain technology embodies in a kind of magical way. In this course, you will explore the mechanics of blockchain technology and how the blockchain acts like a trusted third party. To do this, Professor Ari Juels will design a theoretical cryptocurrency from scratch to illustrate how Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies make use of the blockchain to transfer value from person to person. Then, once you understand how the blockchain acts as a trusted ledger, you will practice articulating other transformative ways in which blockchains can change how commercial and interpersonal connections happen online.

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