Best Financial Calculator – 2018 Reviews and Buyer’s Guide
A financial calculator is an essential tool for everyone looking to manage their finances.
This goes for you if you are a business person, an actuary, a business student, or if you want a financial calculator for personal finances.
Getting the ideal financial calculator is always a complicated process of trying to strike a balance between the functions and the price you expect to pay for a particular brand.
In this post, we are going to narrow down the top five best financial calculators 2018 in the market.
Best Financial Calculator 2018 Reviewed
- Sharp QS-2130 – Best Finance Calculator for Business Applications
- Texas Instruments BA II Plus – Best for Finance Students
- HP 12C Platinum – Best for Finance Professionals
- HP 10bII+ – Best Easy to Use for Business and Finance Students
- Casio FC-200V – Best Budget Financial Calculator
|Model||Display:||Weight:||Important Functions:||Power Source:||Rating||Review|
|Sharp QS-2130||12-Digit with Floating Decimal Point||14.4 ounces||4-key memory |
Independent 2-key memory
Floating decimal, add sign, round up/off/down
|Solar power and battery backup||⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️||Check our Review!|
|Texas Instruments BA II Plus||10-digit LCD||3.84 ounces||10 user memories |
Standard and worksheet modes
|1 CR2032 Lithium-Ion batter||⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️||Check our Review!|
|HP 12C Platinum||10-digit LCD with adjustable contrast||3.68 ounces||RPN and algebraic data input system |
Programmable with up to 400 steps
|1 CR2032 Lithium-Ion batter||⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️||Check our Review!|
|HP 10bII+||12-digit LCD with adjustable contrast||8 ounces||100 business functions |
Algebraic data entry
TVM, NVP, IRR, amortizations, cashflows, mean, etc.
|2 CR2032 batteries||⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️||Check our Review!|
|Casio FC-200V||12 digit, 4-line LCD||12 ounces||Direct mode key |
|Solar power and battery backup||⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️||Check our Review!|
Sharp QS-2130 – Best Finance Calculator for Business Applications
The Sharp QS-2130 is an outstanding calculator to help you with all your financial needs.
It is a basic calculator with only the necessary settings for a commercial or business setting.
It is a good pick if you work in a retail store and you want to keep tabs on all your finances.
Also, if you are an accountant in a finance firm, the features on this calculator will give you incredible performance.
A compact, portable size is all the Sharp QS-2130 is all about. You can take it anywhere, and get to tackle all your calculations on the go. Whether you are at home or the office, it provides you the convenience of being able to access all the business calculations with the multiple-key.
A 12-digit display ensures your calculations are accurate each time.
Easy Solving of Complex Math
It is complemented by a second two-key memory function which also comes in handy to skip entries that you have already saved in the calculator for reuse.
Never Run out of Power
With a dual powering system, your calculator is suitable for use day and night. It has a solar energy system as well as a battery backup so that you can make the most out of its capabilities.
With the multiple settings, dual power, and intuitive display, this calculator is an ideal choice for everyday business calculations.
- 12-digit LCD with automatic 3-digit punctuation
- Arithmetic logic
- Two Independently accessible 4-key & grand total memories
- Round-up/off/down, definable adding mode, fixed(3,2,0)
- MU key for Cos/Sell/Margin calculations
- Solar powered with battery backup to prevent memory loss
Sharp QS-2130 Calculator:
Texas Instruments BA II Plus – Best for Finance Students
It can handle both basic and advanced math with ease.
It is a favorite tool for accounting and finance students as it allows you to apply financial instruments in the real business world.
It is also a suitable choice if you are about to sit your CFA as it is permitted for this exam.
Handles Complex Math
One of its offerings is the ability to handle amortization schedules and time-value-of-money problems. You will be entirely comfortable to calculate annuities, savings, leases, mortgages, and so much more.
Not to mention, it can perform cash-flow analysis using IRR and NPV for up to 24 uneven cash flows. This way, you are set to calculate the value of a business and even gauge if it is profitable or not.
Texas Instruments BA II Plus gives you lots of methods of calculating interest rate conversions and depreciation.
It also allows you to convert between annual and effective interest rates with ease.
Basic Math Functions
Other keys will help you solve regular financial math like trigonometry, powers, and natural logarithms. It has ten memories to make it easy to store formulas, especially for lengthy math more so in CFA classes.
This calculator proves it is a perfect accessory in accounting, statistics, economics and more so in finance. With the high prices associated with financial calculators, this model gives you durability so that you can depend on it throughout your course years.
- Easy-to-read, 10-digit display
- Prompted display shows current variable label and values
- Calculate IRR and NPV for cash-flow analysis
- Store up to 24 uneven cash flows with up to four-digit frequencies; edit inputs to analyze the impact of changes in variables
- Time-value-of-money function
- Quickly solve calculations for annuities, loans, mortgages, leases and savings
- Depreciation schedules
- Choose from six methods for calculating depreciation, book value and remaining depreciable amount
- Interest rate conversions
- Convert between annual (nominal) and effective interest rates
HP 12C Platinum – Best for Finance Professionals
It’s impressive that a calculator can be in the market 30 years after its first production.
Maybe it’s because of its durability, or it is its excellent battery life. Either way, HP 12C is here to stay.
From actuaries to money managers, auditors, product managers, and many others, one calculator lies on their desks, and they all love it the way it is.
Reverse Polish Notation (RPN)
As we say in business, time is money and a calculator that puts value in time is worth any computer app. This calculator also has an algebraic entry system with parentheses.
Over 100 Financial Functions
HP 12c can handle up to 80 cash flows thanks to the memory function. The same memory can handle up to 400 steps for the 130 functions. It provides you with a nice mix of finance, business, and statistics allowing you to solve all types of math problems in your sector.
This includes time-value-of-money math and creation of amortization schedules with the help of NPV and IRR. It can also store your custom programs for future calculations of cumbersome problems.
You have a one-line 10-digit display. It is on an adjustable contrast LCD which allows you to change the brightness to suit the exterior conditions.
Being able to adjust contrast eliminates eye strain if you are in a low lit environment. It also allows you to read the results fast and smooth with a light setting that suits your eyes.
Build Quality and Battery Life
One of the reasons this calculator has managed to stay in the market for so long is its shock resistance. Whether you work in the office or you spend your time in the field, you will at one time drop your calculator on the floor.
If it is a concrete floor, you can end up with a cracked screen or jammed keys. But not with the HP 12C. It is rigorously tested for falls that’s why you will spot it in just about any environment.
Looking at the battery life, HP 12C is powered by one CR2032 battery. It continues to provide similar long-term performance. Some users indicate they have not replaced their batteries for over a decade. It goes on to say the kind of reliability you can only get on HP 12C.
- Simple, easy-to-read 1-line-by-10-character display
- Over 130 built-in business, financial, statistical, and math functions
- RPN and algebraic data entry
- Keystroke programming, up to 400 steps
- Includes carrying case and long-life battery
CFA Tutorial: NPV for Uneven Cash Flows using HP12c:
HP 10bII+ – Best Easy to Use for Business and Finance Students
HP continues to stand out as a reliable brand in the production of financial calculators.
This particular model; the HP 10bII+ is a straightforward tool to use as it has a smooth learning curve.
You can gain access to its 170 functions and get the most out of it.
It leans on exquisite performance for everyone who wants a financial calculator for statistical and business purposes.
With an algebraic data entry system, it gives you a simple way to input numbers allowing you to get the most accurate answers. There is no room for mistakes, and this calculator gives you precisely that.
All your Courses are Covered
HP10bII+ is a useful tool from your first year of college. It will help you through introductory accounting, business, finance, banking, to science, mathematics, and even statistics.
It will grow with your needs from when you will be handling probability distributions to the most complicated econometrics class.
A 12-digit display gives you top accuracy. You will find it exceptional as you can adjust the brightness to suit your eyes and your current lighting conditions. Not to mention, it produces fast results without delay. It will save you time so that you can handle more math and accomplish your goals.
Investing in the HP10bII+ guarantees you ease of use, suitability in exams, durability, and style. You don’t want to go to your next class without the HP10bII+.
- HP 12-digit calculator offers 6 regression options
- 22-number memory storage
- Over 170 built-in functions including probability distributions
- Intuitive keyboard layout with minimal keystrokes required for many common functions
- Easy-to-read display with adjustable contrast and on-screen labels
- Permitted for use on SAT, PSAT/NMSQT and College Board AP tests
Time value of money (using HP 10bII+):
Casio FC-200V – Best Budget Financial Calculator
Casio is one of the favorite calculator producers on the market.
The Casio FC-200V model offers simplicity, excellent performance, and durability in an affordable package.
It comes with a hard case to protect it from damage when you drop it.
We can tell you are getting a reliable product that will last you years.
You also have access to the simple interest key, compound interest, investment appraisal, statistical and regression, interest rate conversion, amortization, and many others.
This calculator allows you to create shortcuts. You will be able to assign a parameter value or setting, to one of its shortcut keys so that you can recall it later for simpler and faster calculations.
This eliminates the need to keep repeating a sequence of inputs when handling similar problems in the future. You will be more efficient and be able to handle more financial calculations.
Casio goes away from the norm by giving you a 12-digit 4-line display. It does not only offer you more accuracy, but you also get more details so that you can relate the question to the answer.
We like that it has hard plastic keys making it easy to input numbers since you will be sure when you key in any number.
Casio FC-200V is an intuitive model. It gives you true value for money. From being able to handle complex financial computations to simple investment appraisals, you are not about to get disappointed with it.
- Large, easy-to-read display
- 10-digit mantissa + 2-digit exponential display
- Cost/sell/margin, investment appraisal, amortization
- Converts between percentage interest rate and effective interest rate
- Key operations are stored in a buffer, so nothing is lost even during high-speed input
- Plastic keys
- Solar power with battery back-up
Best Financial Calculator – Buyer’s Guide
Some people say you need to be an expert at finding the best financial calculator. But we do not agree. With these pointers, you will be confident when picking your next financial calculator.
Why should you use a financial Calculator?
Students in financial classes fall under the first category of using a financial calculator. If you are taking a course in financial management, you will be asked to bring a financial calculator.
The other category is business professionals and individuals who want to manage their finances. It is difficult to manage your income let alone other peoples ‘money.
Even as difficult as it sounds, financial calculators come in to help and save you time and money while bookkeeping.
Advantages of a Financial Calculator
They solve Time-Value-of-Money Problems
One of the main reasons for getting a financial calculator is the ease of solving time-value-of-money problems. You will mostly encounter questions about the amount of money an investor will have after a couple of years saving and earning interest.
With a financial calculator, you will be able to enter the parameters surrounding that question to get an accurate answer.
Solves a wide variety of financial problems
Apart from time-value-of-money questions, these calculators allow you to acquire answers to such questions of net present value, internal rates of returns, discounted cash flows, markup, and loan formula calculations.
Make Basic Statistics look Easy
Statistics involves a lot of steps. To avoid constant repetition, a financial calculator allows you to perform the calculation automatically by entering the data. This way, you can quickly solve for regression, weighted averages, and correlations.
Disadvantages of Financial Calculators
Requires Learning to use them. If you are unfamiliar with a financial calculator, you will likely lose your way and be unable to get correct answers.This means you will need to take your time and learn how to use the different keys.
Common Functions on a Financial Calculator
With the calculator in the finance mode, everything else falls into place since you don’t have to calculate percentage as the calculator will do it automatically using the tax, before tax, discount, and markup functions.
The interest rate and discount rate use the rate button which is also used to convert between current interest rates and effective interest rates.
The time-value-of-money is a group of functions for future and present value of a series of regular payments. They are usually used for loans, annuities, and mortgages with the help of three features (PV, FV, and TM).
What are the Differences Between a Financial Calculator and a Scientific Calculator?
A financial calculator is designed to solve problems associated with business and commerce. The keys are standalone representing specific finance functions. But a scientific calculator is not specific on the keys.
They provide functions for mathematics, science, and engineering courses. These include such features as scientific notation, floating point, trigonometric functions, exponential functions, and logarithmic functions.
Financial Calculator vs. Excel Computer Program
Excel has continued to have a significant impact in the business setting. You just create a worksheet, and you start punching the necessary data.
Excel is preferred because it is less messy when it comes to solving long financial problems. And if you make a mistake, you can retrieve or backtrack to know where you went wrong because it saves your work.
That said, Excel is a good option in an office where there are no restrictions on the usage. But you cannot take your computer to an exam room. It is limited to where you can take it. As such, it is always good to get accustomed to the two so that you can get the most from both worlds.
Financial Calculator vs. Basic Calculator
A basic calculator has only four functions. That is; addition, multiplication, subtraction, and division. Some include the percentage, mean, and square root functions, but that is as far as they get.
Which is Better: Texas Instruments or HP Financial Calculator
We compare these two calculator brands mostly because they provide the required calculators for major exams like the CFA exam.
Texas Instruments produces calculators that are easy to learn and use especially when we compare the Texas Instruments BA II Plus and the HP 12C. Texas Instruments also sell their financial calculator at a lower price than HP, but it does not have a durable look like that of the HP.
HP financial calculators remain in use years after their production. They offer different input methods like the RPN. This means you will have to learn this input method if you are not familiar with it.
But you get a calculator that will last many years in good use and without requiring a battery change.
Financial calculators are explicitly created for finance problems. With the above list of the best financial calculators, we hope you will find the right model for you.
We picked these models based on thorough researching top performing brands. We believe they will serve you well both in class and in the finance sector.
Try one of these for an easy time the next time you are tackling financial problems.