Why does the balance sheet not portray the market value of the entity
The balance sheet does not portray the market value of the entity (number of common stock shares outstanding multiplied by price per share) for a number of reasons. Most assets are not reported at fair value, but instead are measured according to historical cost. Also, there are certain resources, such as trained employees, an experienced management team, and a good reputation, that are not recorded as assets at all. Therefore, the assets of a company minus its liabilities, as shown in the balance sheet, will not be representative of the company's market value.