Spreadsheets allow us a great deal of flexibility when it comes to analyzing and manipulating financial data. However, a big hurdle is simply getting that data to manipulate and analyze.
While several Web sites, such as Yahoo! Finance and Google Finance, provide price and volume data that is easily downloadable to a spreadsheet, finding other data—and importing it into a spreadsheet—poses more of a challenge. Manually entering selected financial data for a few companies may not be overly time-consuming, but attempting to enter in detailed financial statement data for even a single company would be tedious and laborious.
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