Free Training videos

A selection of videos which should help you improve your investing skills, with general tips, how to spot accounting red flags, help on valuation and more.


Finance Demystified

In this series, we try to clarify some common investing misconceptions.

1. Piotroski Score

We look at the Piotroski score. It’s an incredibly simple but very powerful way of assessing a company’s financial strength.

2. 7 Problems with EBITDA

EBITDA is one of the most commonly used terms in finance, but it’s also a quite dangerous parameter. 

3. Basic Accounting for Investors

You don’t need to be an accountant to be a successful investor. But accounting is the language of finance so it’s helpful to have at least an elementary knowledge.

4. Intangible assets

People talk a lot about intangibles and in a short series of videos we are going to look at intangibles on the balance sheet and in the P&L.

5. Goodwill

Goodwill is a somewhat puzzling concept for many because it’s essentially an accounting entry rather than something with real economic meaning.

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Valuation 101

Explanations of various multiples and what to use when and why.

Dividend Yield

Dividends can be an important element of investors’ returns but too often, people can confuse this with valuation. We explain how to avoid this mistake.


We cover the 10 criticisms that Moody’s levelled at the use of EBITDA, discuss why Jim Grant dislikes the way some companies use it, and explain how and when we use it.

Free Cash Flow Yield

We discuss the difference between FCF yield to equity and to EV and explain some of the ins and outs and common tricks to watch for when using these multiples.

Other Equity Multiples

We look at some of the other equity valuation multiples: price:book, PEG, price:cash flow and price:sales. 

Other EV Multiples

Why EV:Sales is my #1 favourite valuation multiple. I explain why I rely on EV:sales as a must-have multiple in analysing any company. 

Other Valuation Multiples

We conclude our Valuation 101 series on equity and EV multiples by looking at some other less frequent valuation parameters.

P/E Ratio

In this video, look at why the P/E is the most popular valuation tool, and we highlight why it can sometimes be misleading

Valuation Multiples

When to use which multiple? In this introduction to the series, we explain why a single multiple is NEVER enough and why we always use equity multiples in conjunction with EV multiples.


Some SPACs are doing deals at valuations that make little sense. Here we look at the eToro valuation and explain why we think it’s extreme.

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Investing Tips

General tips on how to improve investing performance

1. Sustainable Cash Flow

The best way to value a company is to use a DCF analysis, but they are time consuming to produce and the results vary wildly with small changes in input variables. I prefer to use sustainable cash flow.

2. Liquidity

Liquidity is one of the first things to consider a stock. You don’t want to waste time on a stock in which you cannot buy a sufficiently large position. 

3. Supply VS Demand

Supply is more important than demand. Too many investors spend too much time woryying about demand and not enough on supply trends.

4. Per Employee Measures

My favourite valuation measures are EV to sales and EV per unit of capacity. The latter is great if you are valuing a restaurant chain, but not so helpful for an FMCG business.

5. Study History

Study history? Not the subject, although there are worse subjects to study for a career in investing. History repeats itself and so do markets. 

6. Contingencies

Contingencies are one of those issues which are easy to miss, especially as they are hidden away at the back of the notes to the accounts. 

7. Quality

Quality is the mantra of a numerous highly successful investors – think Warren Buffett or Charlie Munger or Terry Smith of Fundsmith.

8. Moats I

Economic moats are a critcial factor in analysing an investment. In this, the first of our series, we look at economies of scale and explain why they are rarely a moat.

9. Moats II

In this video, the second of our series on moats, we look at network effects and explain that they are often misunderstood.

10. Moats III

In this video, the third in our series on economic moats, we examine the protection afforded by brands and other forms of intellectual property or IP.

11. Moats IV

In this video, the fourth in our moats series, we look at customer loyalty. A brand like Disney which captures enduring loyalty from its customers has pricing power which is a key characteristic of comapnies with good moats.

12. Moats V

In this video, we explain why customer captivity is a less powerful form of moat than it perhaps used to be. Clearly, the term implies a stronger customer relationship than customer loyalty, but captivity is not what it used to be.

13. Moats VI

In this video, we look at frictional costs associated with switching service provider and high search costs associated with difficulty in determining the quality of a provider. These are often the hallmark of a high quality business in which customer churn is low and it’s possible to drive prices gently upwards.

14. Moats VIII

In this video,. we look at a different type of moat. This is perhaps not so much a moat as a pre-requisite for survival – sustainability. Young people want to work for companies which are perceived as doing good in society or at least not causing harm, and these are the employees AND customers of the future.

15. Moats Conclusions

This is the last of the series of moats and we wrap up our commentary on the subject. You can see more training materials including some of these videos with helpful additional written explanation in our free training area.

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Accounting Red Flags

Tips on spotting frauds or companies engaged in earnings management.

Accounting Red Flags 1

First in the series – we look at the importance of audit reports. 

Working Capital Ratios

Working Capital Ratios are an important tool in the forensic accountant’s armoury but every investor should have a few in his or her toolbox.

Intro: Key Tools you should use

In this video, we explain why accounting red flags are so important and introduce this video series. There seem to be more frauds than ever before, especially in Europe. In this series, we will show you how investors can protect themselves.

1. How to Avoid the Next Thos Cook

Why you should read the audit report and conduct other checks – shareholders need the protection of an effective audit. 

2. Working Capital Ratios Help Detect Fraud

We explain how to calculate and use working capital ratios which are a great tool to spot frauds or companies engaged in earnings management. 

3. Cash Flow Beats Earnings

We explain why it’s essential to check that reported earnings are being converted into cash. It sounds obvious, but we show a couple of tricks which make it easier. 

4. Margin Comparisons

We look at how margin comparisons can be used to detect companies with inflated earnings – from frauds to executives trying to “game” earnings to make their bonus.

5. How much does Terry Smith take home?

Related party transactions are often used to process fraudulent transactions and this is one of the first steps in our First 5 Checklist. 

6. Debt & Interest Charges.

In this video, we look at how the interested charge can reveal a balance sheet which has been the subject of window dressing. 

7. Directors

In this video, we look at how the composition of the board and changes in directors can tell you that something may be amiss.

8. Circular Transactions

In this video, we explore the topic of circular transactions. Typically, these are used by fraudulent companies to convert a capital item into income – for example a loan to a related company which then buys a fictitious service.

9. Auditors 1

We look at how auditors should detect fraud and discuss the recent FRC report on Grant Thornoton’s audit of Patisserie Holdings. The regulator said that the firm would have been sanctioned EVEN IF NO FRAUD HAD BEEN COMMITTED.

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Fund Red Flags

Some tips on what a good fund will NOT  be saying.

Credit Suisse Greensill Funds

Steve Clapham shows how some of the forensic accounting techniques he teaches on stocks can also be applied to funds. A common sense approach to investing will keep you safe, and this one was easy to dodge.

Credit Suisse Greensill Funds Part 2

We further explore the Credit Suisse Greensill funds and ask questions about what they are invested in – spoiler, it’s not supply chain finance to industrial companies.

Greensill June 21 Recap: Warning Signs

Greensill Revisited: Top 10 Exposures were ALL Connected

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Financial profile

A quick look at a company’s financial statements.

1. Netflix Content Accounting

Netflix’s content accounting appears aggressive to us. Their earnings are likely overstated as a consequence.

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More Videos

Patisserie Valerie

Patisserie Valerie Video January 2019


Debenhams Last Accounts – In-Depth Course

Patisserie Holdings - What could have alerted you to dangers ahead

An explanation of the tools we deploy to avoid frauds like Patisserie Valerie.

Musks Bail - Is it All Over for Tesla Stock?

Elon Musk is selling some of his Tesla stock. His brother has already sold. This could undermine the confidence of the believers.

Accounting Schemes at Chinese Tech Giants (w/ Kyle Bass and Stephen Clapham)

Hayman Capital’s founder and CIO Kyle Bass talks to Steve about accounting irregularities in the regulatory filings of China’s biggest tech companies.

Growing Wealth in an Inflation Avalanche

Steve talks to author and historian Russell Napier for Real Vision about inflation dangers ahead (March 2021)

Greensill Capital’s $3 Billion Implosion | Steve Clapham | Zer0es TV

Steve is interviewed by Freddy Brick of Muddy Waters.

CSI: Financials: Stephen Clapham on forensic accounting with Tobias on The Acquirers Podcast

Steve appears on the Acquirers Podcast with Tobias Carlisle, April 2020

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