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Accounting and economic measures:An integrated theory of capital budgeting

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  • Carlo Alberto Magni

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Abstract

Accounting measures are traditionally considered not significant from an economic point of view. In particular, accounting rates of return are often regarded economically meaningless or, at the very best, poor surrogates for the IRR, which is held to be “the” economic yield. Likewise, residual income does not enjoy, in general, periodic consistency with the project NPV, so residual income maximization is not equivalent to NPV maximization. This paper shows that the opposition accounting/economic is artificial and, taking a capital budgeting perspective, illustrates the strong (formal and conceptual) connections existing between economic measures and accounting measures. In particular, the average accounting rate of return is the correct economic yield of a project; the traditional IRR is (whenever it exists) only a particular case of it. The average accounting rate generates a decision rule which is logically equivalent to the NPV rule for both accept/reject decisions and project ranking. The paper also shows that maximization of the simple arithmetic mean of residual incomes is equivalent to NPV maximization, owing to its periodic consistency in the sense of Egginton (1995). Such an index may then be used for incentive compensation as well. Moreover, asset pricing may be interpreted in accounting terms as the process whereby the market determines the income impact on the assets’ value. As a result, the paper harmonizes the notions of accounting rate of return, internal rate of return, residual income, net present value: they are just different ways of cognizing the same notion. This conciliation stems in a rather natural way from three sources: (i) a fundamental accounting identity, which links income and cash flow in a comprehensive way, (ii) the definition of Chisini mean, (iii) a notion of residual income which takes account of the “real” (comprehensive) cost of capital.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlo Alberto Magni, 2009. "Accounting and economic measures:An integrated theory of capital budgeting," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0019, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
  • Handle: RePEc:mod:wcefin:0019
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Elisabetta Gualandri & Mario Noera, 2014. "Towards A Macroprudential Policy In The Eu: Main Issues," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0049, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    2. Elisabetta Gualandri & Valeria Venturelli, 2013. "The financing of Italian firms and the credit crunch: findings and exit strategies," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 13101, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    3. Magni, Carlo Alberto, 2016. "Capital depreciation and the underdetermination of rate of return: A unifying perspective," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 54-79.
    4. Elena Giarda & Gloria Moroni, 2018. "The Degree of Poverty Persistence and the Role of Regional Disparities in Italy in Comparison with France, Spain and the UK," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 136(1), pages 163-202, February.
    5. Dean Altshuler & Carlo Alberto Magni, 2015. "Introducing Aggregate Return on Investment as a Solution to the Contradiction Between Some PME Metrics and IRR," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0056, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    6. Stefano Cosma & Elisabetta Gualandri, 2013. "The sovereign debt crisis: the impact on the intermediation model of Italian banks," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0042, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    7. C. Pederzoli & C. Torricelli, 2013. "Efficiency and unbiasedness of corn futures markets: new evidence across the financial crisis," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(24), pages 1853-1863, December.
    8. Magni, Carlo Alberto & Veronese, Piero & Graziani, Rebecca, 2017. "Chisini means and rational decision making: Equivalence of investment criteria," MPRA Paper 81532, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Massimo Baldini & Giovanni Gallo & Costanza Torricelli, 2017. "Past Income Scarcity and Current Perception of Financial Fragility," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0064, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    10. Carlo Alberto Magni, 2015. "Pseudo-naïve approaches to investment performance measurement," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0051, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    11. Stefano Cosma & Elisabetta Gualandri, 2014. "The sovereign debt crisis: the impact on the intermediation model of Italian banks," BANCARIA, Bancaria Editrice, vol. 2, pages 48-60, February.
    12. Elisabetta Gualandri & Mario Noera, 2014. "Monitoring Systemic Risk: A Survey Of The Available Macroprudential Toolkit," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0050, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    13. Elisabetta Gualandri & Mario Noera, 2014. "Towards A Macroprudential Policy In The Eu: Main Issues," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 14110, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    14. Carlo Alberto Magni, 2015. "Pseudo-naïve approaches to investment performance measurement," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 15021, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    15. Massimo Baldini & Giovanni Gallo & Costanza Torricelli, 2017. "Past Income Scarcity and Current Perception of Financial Fragility," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 17121, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    16. Stefano Cosma & Francesca Pancotto & Paola Vezzani, 2018. "Customer Complaining and Probability of Default in Consumer Credit," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 18031, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    17. Elisabetta Gualandri & Mario Noera, 2014. "Monitoring Systemic Risk: A Survey Of The Available Macroprudential Toolkit," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 14111, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    18. Enrico Rubaltelli & Sergio Agnoli & Michela Rancan & Tiziana Pozzoli, 2015. "Emotional Intelligence and risk taking in investment decision-making," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 15107, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    19. Chiara Pederzoli & Costanza Torricelli, 2010. "A parsimonious default prediction model for Italian SMEs," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 0022, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".
    20. Carlo Alberto Magni & Ken V. Peasnell, 2015. "The Term Structure of Capital Values:An accounting-based framework for measuring economic profitability," Department of Economics 0060, University of Modena and Reggio E., Faculty of Economics "Marco Biagi".
    21. Chiara Pederzoli & Costanza Torricelli, 2010. "A parsimonious default prediction model for Italian SMEs," Centro Studi di Banca e Finanza (CEFIN) (Center for Studies in Banking and Finance) 10061, Universita di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia "Marco Biagi".

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Capital budgeting; accounting rate of return; economic yield; internal rate of return; residual income; net present value; average; Chisini mean; cost of capital;

    JEL classification:

    • M41 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting - - - Accounting
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G31 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Capital Budgeting; Fixed Investment and Inventory Studies
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • M52 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Compensation and Compensation Methods and Their Effects

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