General Mills Inc. - Understanding Financial Stamens

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a. What is the nature of General Mills' business? That is, based on what you know about the company and on the accompanying financial statements, how does General Mills make money?
General Mills, Inc. has three segments. U.S. Retail sells ready-to-eat cereals, meals, yogurt, organic foods, etc. The International segment includes retail business in Canada, Europe, Latin America and the Asia/Pacific region. Bakeries and Foodservice sells to retail and wholesale bakeries, and convenience stores. The company makes money through producing various food and products and distributing them all over the world.

b. What financial statements are commonly prepared for external reporting purposes? What titles does General Mills give these statements? What does "consolidated" mean?
Balance sheet, income statement, the statement of cash flow and the statement of shareholders' equity are commonly prepared for external reporting purposes. Titles that General Mills give these statements are consolidated balance sheets, consolidated statements of earnings, consolidated statements of cash flows and consolidated statements of stockholders' equity and comprehensive income. "Consolidated" means that those financial statements includes General Mills' subsidiary companies.

c. How often do publicly traded corporations typically prepare financial statements for external reporting purposes?
SEC requires quarterly financial statements 10-Q and 10-K. All public companies should prepare their financial statements for external reporting purposes based on this timeline.

d. Who is responsible for the financial statements? Discuss the potential users of the General Mills financial statements and the type of information they are likely interested in.
The management of General Mills, Inc. is responsible for the fairness and accuracy of the consolidated financial statements. Potential users of these financial statements could be shareholders, creditors, suppliers, employees,...
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