Still Many Ways to Skin a Capital Cost

Harvard Business Review

The motivation behind it, as with many, many articles published over HBR's nearly 90-year history, was to take an effective practice developed in one corner of industry and spread it to managers everywhere. knew that firms were making heavy use of the capital asset pricing model (CAPM) to size up growth opportunities, but that the model was only as good as its inputs. Not at all, he said, because it's "no secret that applying the CAPM is as much an art as financial science."

DCF 12

Why Sit on All that Cash? Firms Uncertain on Cost of Capital

Harvard Business Review

Only 46 percent use the perpetuity growth model, while 27 percent develop an explicit cash flow forecast for the entire life of a project. Fully 72 percent develop multiple cash flow scenarios representing the expected outcome as well as best- and worst-case outcomes, which are then discounted. Budgeting Finance Strategic planning CAPMWith a record $2 trillion in cash and short-term liquid assets on hand, U.S. non-financial firms certainly seem poised to expand.

What Private Equity Investors Think They Do for the Companies They Buy

Harvard Business Review

In operational engineering, PE firms develop industry and operating expertise that they bring to bear to add value to their portfolio companies. Furthermore, few PE investors explicitly use the capital asset price model (CAPM) to determine a cost of capital. Instead, PE investors typically target a 22% internal rate of return on their investments on average (with the vast majority of target rates of return between 20 and 25%), a return that appears to be above a CAPM-based rate.