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dollar investment. EXAMPLE The objective of capital rationing is to select the group of projects that provides the highest overall net present value and does not require more dollars than
are budgeted. As a prerequisite to capital rationing, the best of any mutually
exclusive projects must be chosen and placed in the group of independent projects. Two basic approaches to project selection under capital rationing are discussed here. Internal Rate of Return Approach
The internal rate of return approach involves graphing project IRRs in descending order against the total dollar investment. This graph, which is discussed in
more detail in Chapter 11, is called the investment opportunities schedule (IOS).
By drawing the cost-of-capital line and then imposing a budget constraint, the
financial manager can determine the group of acceptable projects. The problem
with this technique is that it does not guarantee the maximum dollar return to the
firm. It merely provides a satisfactory solution to capital-rationing problems.
Tate Company, a fast-growing plastics company, is confronted with six projects
competing for its fixed budget of $250,000. The initial investment and IRR for
each project are as follows:
Project Initial investment IRR A $ 80,000 B 70,000 20
16 12% C 100,000 D 40,000 8 E 60,000 15 F 110,000 11 The firm has a cost of capital of 10%. Figure 10.4 presents the IOS that results
from ranking the six projects in descending order on the basis of their IRRs.
According to the schedule, only projects B, C, and E should be accepted.
Together they will absorb $230,000 of the $250,000 budget. Projects A and F
are acceptable but cannot be chosen because of the budget constraint. Project D
is not worthy of consideration; its IRR is less than the firm’s 10% cost of
The drawback of this approach is that there is no guarantee that the acceptance of projects B, C, and E will maximize total dollar returns and therefore
owners’ wealth. net present value approach
An approach to capital rationing
that is based on the use of
present values to determine the
group of projects that will
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This document was uploaded on 01/19/2014.
- Fall '13