Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Irreversible Investment, Capacity Choice, and the Value of the Firm

Contents:

Author Info

  • Robert S. Pindyck

Abstract

A model of capacity choice and utilization is developed consistent with value maximization when investment is irreversible and future demand is uncertain. Investment requires the full value of a marginal unit of capacity to be at least as large as its full cost. The former includes the value of the firms option not to utilize the unit, and the latter includes the opportunity cost of exercising the investment option. We show that for moderate amounts of uncertainty, the firm's optimal capacity is much smaller than it would be if investment were reversible, and a large fraction of the firm's value is due to the possibility of future growth. We also characterize the behavior of capacity and capacity utilization, and discuss implications far the measurement of marginal cost and Tobin's q.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w1980.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 1980.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: Jul 1986
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as American Economic Review, Vol. 78, no. 5, pp. 969-985, Dec. 1988.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1980

Note: ME
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Email:
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords:

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Cukierman, Alex, 1980. "The Effects of Uncertainty on Investment under Risk Neutrality with Endogenous Information," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(3), pages 462-75, June.
  2. Saman Majd & Robert S. Pindyck, 1985. "Time to Build, Option Value, and Investment Decisions," NBER Working Papers 1654, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Ben S. Bernanke, 1980. "Irreversibility, Uncertainty, and Cyclical Investment," NBER Working Papers 0502, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Baldwin, Carliss Y, 1982. " Optimal Sequential Investment When Capital Is Not Readily Reversible," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, American Finance Association, vol. 37(3), pages 763-82, June.
  5. Hall, Robert E, 1988. "The Relation between Price and Marginal Cost in U.S. Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(5), pages 921-47, October.
  6. Andrew B. Abel & Olivier J. Blanchard, 1983. "The Present Value of Profits and Cyclical Movements in Investment," NBER Working Papers 1122, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Brennan, Michael J & Schwartz, Eduardo S, 1985. "Evaluating Natural Resource Investments," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(2), pages 135-57, April.
  8. Abel, Andrew B, 1983. "Optimal Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 228-33, March.
  9. Paddock, James L & Siegel, Daniel R & Smith, James L, 1988. "Option Valuation of Claims on Real Assets: The Case of Offshore Petroleum Leases," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 103(3), pages 479-508, August.
  10. Hartman, Richard, 1972. "The effects of price and cost uncertainty on investment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 258-266, October.
  11. McDonald, Robert L & Siegel, Daniel R, 1985. "Investment and the Valuation of Firms When There Is an Option to Shut Down," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 26(2), pages 331-49, June.
  12. McDonald, Robert & Siegel, Daniel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-27, November.
  13. Merton, Robert C., 1977. "On the pricing of contingent claims and the Modigliani-Miller theorem," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 241-249, November.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1980. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.