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The Corporate Cost of Capital and the Return on Corporate Investment

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  • EUGENE F. FAMA
  • KENNETH R. FRENCH

Abstract

We estimate the internal rates of return earned by nonfinancial firms on (i) the initial market values of their securities and (ii) the cost of their investments. The return on value is an estimate of the overall corporate cost of capital. The estimate of the real cost of capital for 1950-96 is 5.95 percent. The real return on cost is larger, 7.38 percent, so on average corporate investment seems to be profitable. A by-product of calculating these returns is information about the history of corporate earnings, investment, and financing decisions that is perhaps more interesting than the returns. Copyright The American Finance Association 1999.
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(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Eugene F. Fama & Kenneth R. French, "undated". "The Corporate Cost of Capital and the Return on Corporate Investment," CRSP working papers 355, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
  • Handle: RePEc:wop:chispw:355
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:taf:oaefxx:v:4:y:2016:i:1:p:1233628 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Malcolm Baker & Jeffrey Wurgler, 2000. "The Equity Share in New Issues and Aggregate Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(5), pages 2219-2257, October.
    3. Steve Keen, 2015. "Post Keynesian Theories of Crisis," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 74(2), pages 298-324, March.
    4. Sergey Rumyantsev & Serguei Netessine, 2007. "What Can Be Learned from Classical Inventory Models? A Cross-Industry Exploratory Investigation," Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, INFORMS, vol. 9(4), pages 409-429, April.
    5. Liu, Yong-Chin & Hung, Jung-Hua, 2006. "Services and the long-term profitability in Taiwan's banks," Global Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 177-191, December.
    6. Prezas, Alexandros P., 2009. "Internal capital markets, empire building, and capital structure," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 61(3), pages 173-188.
    7. Larrain, Borja & Yogo, Motohiro, 2008. "Does firm value move too much to be justified by subsequent changes in cash flow," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 200-226, January.
    8. Mamunur Rashid & Fauzias Mat Nor & Izani Ibrahim, 2013. "Evidence of Dividend Catering Theory in Malaysia: Implications for Investor Sentiment," Contemporary Economics, University of Finance and Management in Warsaw, vol. 7(4), December.
    9. Da, Zhi & Guo, Re-Jin & Jagannathan, Ravi, 2012. "CAPM for estimating the cost of equity capital: Interpreting the empirical evidence," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(1), pages 204-220.
    10. Panayiotis Artikis & Georgia Nifora, 2012. "Capital Structure, Macroeconomic Variables & Stock Returns. Evidence from Greece," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 18(1), pages 87-101, February.
    11. Sheridan Titman & K.C. John Wei & Feixue Xie, 2009. "Capital Investments and Stock Returns in Japan-super-," International Review of Finance, International Review of Finance Ltd., vol. 9(1-2), pages 111-131.
    12. Robert E. Hall, 2001. "The Stock Market and Capital Accumulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1185-1202, December.
    13. Green, Richard C. & Hollifield, Burton, 2003. "The personal-tax advantages of equity," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 175-216, February.
    14. Kryzanowski, Lawrence & Mohsni, Sana, 2013. "Growth of aggregate corporate earnings and cash-flows: Persistence and determinants," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 13-23.
    15. Agha, Mahmoud & Faff, Robert, 2014. "An investigation of the asymmetric link between credit re-ratings and corporate financial decisions: “Flicking the switch” with financial flexibility," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 37-57.
    16. Steve Keen, 2013. "Predicting the ‘Global Financial Crisis’: Post-Keynesian Macroeconomics," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 89(285), pages 228-254, June.
    17. repec:bla:abacus:v:53:y:2017:i:3:p:371-394 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Panayotis Artikis & Georgia Nifora, 2011. "Leverage and Returns in Three Countries of Southern European Region," European Research Studies Journal, European Research Studies Journal, vol. 0(4), pages 3-26.
    19. Panayiotis Artikis & Georgia Nifora, 2011. "The Industry Effect on the Relationship Between Leverage and Returns," Eurasian Business Review, Springer;Eurasia Business and Economics Society, vol. 1(2), pages 125-145, December.
    20. Spyros Missiakoulis & Dimitrios Vasiliou & Nikolaos Eriotis, 2007. "A requiem for the use of the geometric mean in evaluating portfolio performance," Applied Financial Economics Letters, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 3(6), pages 403-408.
    21. Linn, Scott C. & Stock, Duane R., 2005. "The impact of junior debt issuance on senior unsecured debt's risk premiums," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 1585-1609, June.
    22. Kryzanowski, Lawrence & Mohsni, Sana, 2010. "Capital returns, costs and EVA for Canadian firms," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 256-273, December.
    23. repec:kap:iaecre:v:18:y:2012:i:1:p:87-101 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. repec:eee:ecmode:v:69:y:2018:i:c:p:301-312 is not listed on IDEAS

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