Core Skills: Excel, Economic Modelling, and Data Analysis


The courses in the Core Skills program contain the foundations needed to build and use economic models and conduct data analysis in Excel.

Essentials of Modelling with Excel

The definition of modelling · Purpose, uses, application areas Influence diagrams · Links between modelling and data analysis · Generic model types. Principles to design and build useful models that support decisions. Decision criteria in business and finance. The skills required to be a well-rounded financial modeller and analyst. Excel as a modelling tool · Creating formulas · Manual and automatic calculation · Mapping a model concept into calculations · Dependency and precedents tracing. Copy, paste, insert, delete, undo · Find/Replace · Wildcard characters · Named ranges · GoTo and GoTo Special · Efficient selection of ranges · Navigation around a model. Formatting · Conditional formatting · Custom formatting. Sensitivity analysis · DataTables · One-way analysis · Two-way analysis · GoalSeek. Principles of effective visual communication · Using graphs and charts. Tips and tricks · Short-cuts and KeyTips · Core Excel functions to capture logic, conditionality, comparison and aggregation. 8 Quizzes.

Economic Modelling: Calculations, Criteria and Functions

Payback periods · Scenario modelling · Lookup functions · Growth formulae and present values. Measuring growth · Classical and logarithmic measures · Growth calculations · Inflating and discounting · Time-value-of-money. Risk-free rates. Interest calculations. Compounding methods and formulas · Accruals · Bootstrapping · Yield curves. Time-period conversions · Annuities and terminal values. Economic Evaluation. Calculation of returns · Internal rate of return · Limitations to calculation of returns · Discounted cash flow, net present value ·  Calculations of loan amortisation and mortgages, implied rates and values. 5 Quizzes.

Introduction to Data Analysis and Statistics

Databases · General versus database structures · Excel Tables · Filters and sorting · Advanced filters and criteria-based extraction · PivotTables · Introduction to PowerPivot and the data Model · Excel functions for data analysis· Aggregation functions · Database functions · Dynamic sorting ·  Basic aspects of data manipulation, cleaning, splitting and integration · Unique values and duplicates  ·  Statistical functions · Single variable statistics (e.g. averages, percentile, standard deviations) · Confidence intervals · Multi-variable statistics (e.g. correlation, rank correlation, Kendall’s tau· Linear regression · Multiple regression · Array calculations and bespoke logic. 5 Quizzes.

Model Planning, Design and Best Practices

Context and objectives. Addressing the right decision · Frameworks and tools for analysis and development of business strategy · Decision criteria · Economic criteria · Ratio analysis · Dupont analysis · Determination of model variables, flow and granularity · Horizontal or vertical time axis · Links to interest compounding · Data sources, structures and model types · Database approaches to modelling · Historical versus forecasted analysis · Logic reversals · Updating requirements · Structural limitations versus parameter flexibility · Allocations, linear and non-linear · Time allocation with triangles · Corkscrew structures · Waterfall allocations · Checking consistency and error-elimination. Designing for modularity. Approaches to linking modules · Selection and exclusion structures · Consolidation and inclusion structures· Appending data sets together (introduction) · Modelling sequences of decisions · Best practices in Excel modelling · Choices of structure · Principles of transparency · Dealing with circularities. Complexity reduction and optimisation.

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