Financial Terms
Return on capital employed (ROCE)

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Definition of Return on capital employed (ROCE)

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE) Image 1

Return on capital employed (ROCE)

The operating profit before interest and tax as a percentage of the total shareholders’ funds plus
the long-term debt of the business.

Related Terms:

CARs (cumulative abnormal returns)

a measure used in academic finance articles to measure the excess returns an investor would have received over a particular time period if he or she were invested in a particular stock.
This is typically used in control and takeover studies, where stockholders are paid a premium for being taken over. Starting some time period before the takeover (often five days before the first announced bid, but sometimes a longer period), the researchers calculate the actual daily stock returns for the target firm and subtract out the expected market returns (usually calculated using the firm’s beta and applying it to overall market movements during the time period under observation).
The excess actual return over the capital asset pricing model-determined expected return market is called an ‘‘abnormal return.’’ The cumulation of the daily abnormal returns over the time period under observation is the CAR. The term CAR(-5, 0) means the CAR calculated from five days before the
announcement to the day of announcement. The CAR(-1, 0) is a control premium, although Mergerstat generally uses the stock price five days before announcement rather than one day before announcement as the denominator in its control premium calculation. However, the CAR for any period other than (-1, 0) is not mathematically equivalent to a control premium.

Abnormal returns

Part of the return that is not due to systematic influences (market wide influences). In
other words, abnormal returns are above those predicted by the market movement alone. Related: excess

After-tax real rate of return

Money after-tax rate of return minus the inflation rate.

Annualized holding period return

The annual rate of return that when compounded t times, would have
given the same t-period holding return as actually occurred from period 1 to period t.

Arithmetic average (mean) rate of return

Arithmetic mean return.

Arithmetic mean return

An average of the subperiod returns, calculated by summing the subperiod returns
and dividing by he number of subperiods.

Average accounting return

The average project earnings after taxes and depreciation divided by the average
book value of the investment during its life.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE) Image 2

Average cost of capital

A firm's required payout to the bondholders and to the stockholders expressed as a
percentage of capital contributed to the firm. Average cost of capital is computed by dividing the total
required cost of capital by the total amount of contributed capital.

Average rate of return (ARR)

The ratio of the average cash inflow to the amount invested.


Money invested in a firm.

Capital account

Net result of public and private international investment and lending activities.

Capital allocation

decision Allocation of invested funds between risk-free assets versus the risky portfolio.

Capital asset pricing model (CAPM)

An economic theory that describes the relationship between risk and
expected return, and serves as a model for the pricing of risky securities. The CAPM asserts that the only risk
that is priced by rational investors is systematic risk, because that risk cannot be eliminated by diversification.
The CAPM says that the expected return of a security or a portfolio is equal to the rate on a risk-free security
plus a risk premium.

Capital budget

A firm's set of planned capital expenditures.

Capital budgeting

The process of choosing the firm's long-term capital assets.

Capital expenditures

Amount used during a particular period to acquire or improve long-term assets such as
property, plant or equipment.

Capital flight

The transfer of capital abroad in response to fears of political risk.

Capital gain

When a stock is sold for a profit, it's the difference between the net sales price of securities and
their net cost, or original basis. If a stock is sold below cost, the difference is a capital loss.

Capital gains yield

The price change portion of a stock's return.

Capital lease

A lease obligation that has to be capitalized on the balance sheet.

Capital loss

The difference between the net cost of a security and the net sale price, if that security is sold at a loss.

Capital market

The market for trading long-term debt instruments (those that mature in more than one year).

Capital market efficiency

Reflects the relative amount of wealth wasted in making transactions. An efficient
capital market allows the transfer of assets with little wealth loss. See: efficient market hypothesis.

Capital market imperfections view

The view that issuing debt is generally valuable but that the firm's
optimal choice of capital structure is a dynamic process that involves the other views of capital structure (net
corporate/personal tax, agency cost, bankruptcy cost, and pecking order), which result from considerations of
asymmetric information, asymmetric taxes, and transaction costs.

Capital market line (CML)

The line defined by every combination of the risk-free asset and the market portfolio.

Capital rationing

Placing one or more limits on the amount of new investment undertaken by a firm, either
by using a higher cost of capital, or by setting a maximum on parts of, and/or the entirety of, the capital

Capital structure

The makeup of the liabilities and stockholders' equity side of the balance sheet, especially
the ratio of debt to equity and the mixture of short and long maturities.

Capital surplus

Amounts of directly contributed equity capital in excess of the par value.


The debt and/or equity mix that fund a firm's assets.

Capitalization method

A method of constructing a replicating portfolio in which the manager purchases a
number of the largest-capitalized names in the index stock in proportion to their capitalization.

Capitalization ratios

Also called financial leverage ratios, these ratios compare debt to total capitalization
and thus reflect the extent to which a corporation is trading on its equity. capitalization ratios can be
interpreted only in the context of the stability of industry and company earnings and cash flow.

Capitalization table

A table showing the capitalization of a firm, which typically includes the amount of
capital obtained from each source - long-term debt and common equity - and the respective capitalization


Recorded in asset accounts and then depreciated or amortized, as is appropriate for expenditures
for items with useful lives greater than one year.

Capitalized interest

Interest that is not immediately expensed, but rather is considered as an asset and is then
amortized through the income statement over time.

Complete capital market

A market in which there is a distinct marketable security for each and every
possible outcome.

Corporate processing float

The time that elapses between receipt of payment from a customer and the
depositing of the customer's check in the firm's bank account; the time required to process customer

Cost of capital

The required return for a capital budgeting project.

Cost of limited partner capital

The discount rate that equates the after-tax inflows with outflows for capital
raised from limited partners.

Cumulative abnormal return (CAR)

Sum of the differences between the expected return on a stock and the
actual return that comes from the release of news to the market.

Dedicated capital

Total par value (number of shares issued, multiplied by the par value of each share). Also
called dedicated value.

Diffusion process

A conception of the way a stock's price changes that assumes that the price takes on all
intermediate values. dirty price. Related: full price

Dollar return

The return realized on a portfolio for any evaluation period, including (1) the change in market
value of the portfolio and (2) any distributions made from the portfolio during that period.

Dollar-weighted rate of return

Also called the internal rate of return, the interest rate that will make the
present value of the cash flows from all the subperiods in the evaluation period plus the terminal market value
of the portfolio equal to the initial market value of the portfolio.

Efficient capital market

A market in which new information is very quickly reflected accurately in share

Ex post return

Related: Holding period return

Exante return

The expected return of a portfolio based on the expected returns of its component assets and
their weights.

Excess return on the market portfolio

The difference between the return on the market portfolio and the
riskless rate.

Excess returns

Also called abnormal returns, returns in excess of those required by some asset pricing model.

Expected future return

The return that is expected to be earned on an asset in the future. Also called the
expected return.

Expected return

The return expected on a risky asset based on a probability distribution for the possible rates
of return. Expected return equals some risk free rate (generally the prevailing U.S. Treasury note or bond rate)
plus a risk premium (the difference between the historic market return, based upon a well diversified index
such as the S&P500 and historic U.S. Treasury bond) multiplied by the assets beta.

Expected return on investment

The return one can expect to earn on an investment. See: capital asset
pricing model.

Expected return-beta relationship

Implication of the CAPM that security risk premiums will be
proportional to beta.

Geometric mean return

Also called the time weighted rate of return, a measure of the compounded rate of
growth of the initial portfolio market value during the evaluation period, assuming that all cash distributions
are reinvested in the portfolio. It is computed by taking the geometric average of the portfolio subperiod

Good delivery and settlement procedures

Refers to PSA Uniform Practices such as cutoff times on delivery
of securities and notification, allocation, and proper endorsement.

Hard capital rationing

capital rationing that under no circumstances can be violated.

Holding period return

The rate of return over a given period.

Horizon return

Total return over a given horizon.

Human capital

The unique capabilities and expertise of individuals.

Incremental internal rate of return

IRR on the incremental investment from choosing a large project
instead of a smaller project.

Internal rate of return

Dollar-weighted rate of return. Discount rate at which net present value (NPV)
investment is zero. The rate at which a bond's future cash flows, discounted back to today, equals its price.

In-house processing float

Refers to the time it takes the receiver of a check to process the payment and
deposit it in a bank for collection.

Issued share capital

Total amount of shares that are in issue. Related: outstanding shares.

Legal capital

Value at which a company's shares are recorded in its books.

Leveraged required return

The required return on an investment when the investment is financed partially by debt.

Long-term debt/capitalization

Indicator of financial leverage. Shows long-term debt as a proportion of the
capital available. Determined by dividing long-term debt by the sum of long-term debt, preferred stock and
common stockholder equity.

Market capitalization

The total dollar value of all outstanding shares. Computed as shares times current
market price. It is a measure of corporate size.

Market capitalization rate

Expected return on a security. The market-consensus estimate of the appropriate
discount rate for a firm's cash flows.

Market return

The return on the market portfolio.

Money rate of return

Annual money return as a percentage of asset value.

Multiple rates of return

More than one rate of return from the same project that make the net present value
of the project equal to zero. This situation arises when the IRR method is used for a project in which negative
cash flows follow positive cash flows. For each sign change in the cash flows, there is a rate of return.

Net working capital

Current assets minus current liabilities. Often simply referred to as working capital.

Nondiversifiability of human capital

The difficulty of diversifying one's human capital (the unique
capabilities and expertise of individuals) and employment effort.

Opportunity cost of capital

Expected return that is foregone by investing in a project rather than in
comparable financial securities.

Other capital

In the balance of payments, other capital is a residual category that groups all the capital
transactions that have not been included in direct investment, portfolio investment, and reserves categories. It
is divided into long-term capital and short-term capital and, because of its residual status, can differ from
country to country. Generally speaking, other long-term capital includes most non-negotiable instruments of a
year or more like bank loans and mortgages. Other short-term capital includes financial assets of less than a
year such as currency, deposits, and bills.

Outstanding share capital

Issued share capital less the par value of shares that are held in the company's treasury.

Pecking-order view (of capital structure)

The argument that external financing transaction costs, especially
those associated with the problem of adverse selection, create a dynamic environment in which firms have a
preference, or pecking-order of preferred sources of financing, when all else is equal. Internally generated
funds are the most preferred, new debt is next, debt-equity hybrids are next, and new equity is the least
preferred source.

Perfect capital market

A market in which there are never any arbitrage opportunities.

Perfect market view (of capital structure)

Analysis of a firm's capital structure decision, which shows the
irrelevance of capital structure in a perfect capital market.

Personal tax view (of capital structure)

The argument that the difference in personal tax rates between
income from debt and income from equity eliminates the disadvantage from the double taxation (corporate
and personal) of income from equity.

Pie model of capital structure

A model of the debt/equity ratio of the firms, graphically depicted in slices of
a pie that represent the value of the firm in the capital markets.

Planned capital expenditure program

capital expenditure program as outlined in the corporate financial plan.

Portfolio internal rate of return

The rate of return computed by first determining the cash flows for all the
bonds in the portfolio and then finding the interest rate that will make the present value of the cash flows
equal to the market value of the portfolio.

Price discovery process

The process of determining the prices of the assets in the marketplace through the
interactions of buyers and sellers.

Pro forma capital structure analysis

A method of analyzing the impact of alternative capital structure
choices on a firm's credit statistics and reported financial results, especially to determine whether the firm will
be able to use projected tax shield benefits fully.

Rate of return ratios

Ratios that are designed to measure the profitability of the firm in relation to various
measures of the funds invested in the firm.

Real capital

Wealth that can be represented in financial terms, such as savings account balances, financial
securities, and real estate.

Realized return

The return that is actually earned over a given time period.

Regulatory accounting procedures

Accounting principals required by the FHLB that allow S&Ls to elect
annually to defer gains and losses on the sale of assets and amortize these deferrals over the average life of the
asset sold.

Required return

The minimum expected return you would require to be willing to purchase the asset, that is,
to make the investment.


The change in the value of a portfolio over an evaluation period, including any distributions made
from the portfolio during that period.

Return on assets (ROA)

Indicator of profitability. Determined by dividing net income for the past 12 months
by total average assets. Result is shown as a percentage. ROA can be decomposed into return on sales (net
income/sales) multiplied by asset utilization (sales/assets).

Return on equity (ROE)

Indicator of profitability. Determined by dividing net income for the past 12
months by common stockholder equity (adjusted for stock splits). Result is shown as a percentage. Investors
use ROE as a measure of how a company is using its money. ROE may be decomposed into return on assets
(ROA) multiplied by financial leverage (total assets/total equity).

Return on investment (ROI)

Generally, book income as a proportion of net book value.

Return on total assets

The ratio of earnings available to common stockholders to total assets.

Return-to-maturity expectations

A variant of pure expectations theory which suggests that the return that an
investor will realize by rolling over short-term bonds to some investment horizon will be the same as holding
a zero-coupon bond with a maturity that is the same as that investment horizon.

Riskless rate of return

The rate earned on a riskless asset.

Safety-net return

The minimum available return that will trigger an immunization strategy in a contingent
immunization strategy.

"Soft" Capital Rationing

capital rationing that under certain circumstances can be violated or even viewed
as made up of targets rather than absolute constraints.

Static theory of capital structure

Theory that the firm's capital structure is determined by a trade-off of the
value of tax shields against the costs of bankruptcy.







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