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The Undervaluation of Distressed Company's Equity

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  • Schmidt, Frederik

Abstract

In a simple firm value model we consider the impact of the insolvency probability on the valuation of equity and debt, which are assumed to be not publicly traded. For the case of a distressed company, which usually has high debt and low equity, we can show that the impact becomes increasingly important. Disregarding this yields an overvaluation of debt and an undervaluation of equity. We calculate the sensitivity of equity with regard to debt, which is isomorphic to the sensitivity of a call option with regard to the strike price, and show that this sensitivity rises with increasing debt. Furthermore, we provide a numerical example of this effect.

Suggested Citation

  • Schmidt, Frederik, 2009. "The Undervaluation of Distressed Company's Equity," MPRA Paper 13341, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:13341
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/13377/1/MPRA_paper_13377.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Merton, Robert C, 1974. "On the Pricing of Corporate Debt: The Risk Structure of Interest Rates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 29(2), pages 449-470, May.
    2. Black, Fischer & Scholes, Myron S, 1973. "The Pricing of Options and Corporate Liabilities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 637-654, May-June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Distressed Company; Valuation; Derivatives Pricing Models;

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • G33 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Bankruptcy; Liquidation

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