Summary of The EVA Challenge

Looking for the book?
We have the summary! Get the key insights in just 10 minutes.

The EVA Challenge book summary


8 Overall

8 Applicability

8 Innovation

7 Style


Authors Joel Stern and John Shiely advocate a total revolution in the way companies are valued and measured. They make a convincing case for using EVA ("Economic Value Added") as the primary measure of corporate performance. The authors argue that the SEC’s yardstick for corporate reporting, the "Generally Accepted Accounting Procedures" (GAAP), was designed to protect lenders by depicting a company’s liquidation value. As such, GAAP provides an overly conservative and only marginally accurate picture of financial health. EVA principles - at least according to the consultants who advise companies on using them - evaluate intangible assets more realistically and correspond more closely to stock market performance. recommends this book to executives who seek improved corporate financial and market performance, and to investors interested in understanding how value is created and maintained.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How deficiencies in current GAAP-based corporate reporting rules create inefficiencies in equity markets;
  • The definition of Economic Value Added (EVA), a new measure of corporate performance, and
  • How EVA can improve the accuracy of corporate reporting by more accurately reflecting the value of intangible assets.

About the Authors

Joel M. Stern , managing partner of Stern Stewart & Co., is a widely published writer and the financial policy columnist for the Sunday Times of London. He serves on the faculties of five graduate business schools worldwide. John S. Shiely, president of Briggs & Stratton, was a tax accountant with Arthur Anderson before he became a lawyer. He joined Briggs & Stratton as general counsel in 1986. Writer Irwin Ross (whom Stern retained to help write this book) was a roving editor for Reader’s Digest. He has written for many magazines, including Fortune and Harper’s, and is a regular contributor to EVAngelist. He has written a number of books, including The Loneliest Campaign, The Image Merchants and Shady Business.



The Problem
What determines a company’s value? An old man with a mom-and-pop grocery store answers by pointing to the cigar box where he keeps his cash, saying, "If the lid is rising during the day, it means we’re doing fine." As measures go, this may be simplistic, but it says it all. ...

Comment on this summary

More on this topic

Customers who read this summary also read

More by category