Business Finance - Financing Decisions

by: Naz Daud

The goal of corporate finance is to raise sufficient capital at the least cost for the level of risk that management is willing to live with. The risk is that a business will not be able to service the debt and be forced into bankruptcy.

Broadly speaking there are 5 main ways of funding a company's needs:

* Receive credit from suppliers
* Obtain lease financing
* Obtain bank loans
* Issue bonds
* Issue stock

Supplier credit

This is the easiest way that companies obtain funding. Companies buy goods and services and have anywhere from seven days till 6 months to pay for them; when companies need more credit from suppliers the financial controllers will negotiate longer credit terms or larger credit lines. The payment terms can also be stretched and this can work well because the creditors do not want the customer to go into bankruptcy taking their money with them.

Lease financing

Instead of buying equipment, many companies choose to lease equipment - this is a form of franchising.Cars,computers and heavy equipment can be financed for short periods or indeed longer periods.

If it is a short period it is referred to as an operating lease and at the end of the lease the property is still useful and is returned to the finance company.

Long term leases are, in substance, ways are ways of funding a purchase rather than buying the temporary services of a piece of equipment. These are often referred to as capital leases.

For capital leases the leased assets and the financing liability are recorded on the leasing company's books as though the company had bought the equipment outright.

Bank financing

The next level of financing involves banks. If a company has a credit line or revolver with a bank it draws down and pays back up to set limits of credit as cash is needed and generated by the business. The credit is often secured by assets of the firm however if a business runs into trouble it may not be able to pay the bank and go into bankruptcy

Bond Insurance

Bonds have fixed interest rate contractual payments and a principal maturity. The risk comes to the firm's owners if they cannot be serviced. The principle bond owners can then exchange them for ownership of the company and oust the owners.

The After-Tax cost of Borrowing

Interest payments for borrowing from vendors, bankers or bondholders are tax-deductible, while dividends to shareholders are not. The after-tax cost of borrowing is the interest cost less the tax benefit.

Stock Issues

Stock issues have non-contractual, non tax deductible dividend payments. Stock represents an ownership in the business and in all of its assets. If additional shares of stock are issued to raise cash, this is done at the at the expense of the current shareholders' ownership interest. New shareholders share their ownership interest equally on a per-share basis with the current shareholders - this is why analysts say that the new shareholders dilute the interest of existing shareholders.


In summarising, the higher the percentage of debt to total capital, the higher a company's value, to a point. At the point where the risk of bankruptcy becomes significant, values fall. The cost of financing decreases as a company adds lower-cost shielded debt to displace the higher returns required by equity investors.

About The Author
Naz Daud is the Founder of the CityLocal Internet Business Franchise Opportunity.

7 Proven Steps to Fix Your Personal Finances That You Can Implement Right Now

by: Bruce Hokin

Fixing your personal finances is not rocket science. You can do it if you apply some commitment and are prepared to stick to the plan. Imagine how your world could open up if you were debt free. Imagine all the options. Quit your job, work fewer hours, have more holidays or just help others.

The proven methods listed below will work for you if you are determined to succeed and implement them in your own circumstances.

Step 1. Imagine how good life will be once the debt is paid.

Imagine for a minute how good life would be to if you were debt free. Think what you could do with the money you currently use to pay off those credits cards. You could use it to save for your future, save for your retirement, hit the sales with a clear conscience, go on holidays or save for your children's college education. Think on this often and visualize in your mind's eye how your life would change for the better once the debt was gone. If you seriously want this to happen to you it will be easier to follow the next steps.

Step 2. Do a budget.

Unless you know what your financial position is currently you won't know what targets to set, will you. Agreed? Good. The best, most simple way to do this is to set up a personal or family budget. A lot of people stop here and don't progress any further. Bad idea! This can be done very simply. Just follow the points listed below:

a) Get out your latest credit card statements. Add up all the unpaid balances.
b) If there are any other unpaid debts (not home or car) include these balances as well.
c) Calculate your (or family) monthly income - just the amount brought home each month.
d) Calculate your monthly spending. Work out where all the money goes. Don't leave any thing out.
e) Take the monthly spending total away from the monthly income total and review the answer.

Are you living beyond your means? Are you spending more than you earn each month? Are you putting any money aside for emergencies or saving to replace costly items such as the car or some major electrical appliances? Do you have any money left over to increase your monthly credit card payments? Set your self a goal of paying off your credit cards within a certain time.

The questions raised here can be addressed by putting Steps 3-7 into practice.

Step 3. Live within your means.

You can never get your finances under control if you continue to live beyond your means. The cost of living this way is the interest charged by the credit card provider. This is one of the major reasons you are suffering now. Commit yourself to live within your means. Once you have done the budget as outlined in Step 2 you can easily see what you have available to spend.

Step 4. Cut up your credit cards. (Well, maybe keep 1 for emergencies, if you have to.)

It is really important not to add more debt. Read that again. If you can live within your means, you can cut up your credit cards and focus on paying off the credit card balance as soon as possible. You may have items around the house that can be sold. Maybe a second car that is not a necessity. Sell these things and use the funds to pay down the credit card balances. Take on some extra hours at work, think of ways to earn extra income so that these extra funds can be applied to those credit card balances.

Step 5. Find bargains - have fun.

If this whole process becomes a drudgery then it will all become too hard and you won't keep going. Don't let this happen! Set some money aside so that you can, occasionally, buy those things you want. Learn how to only buy things you need and ensure they are at the cheapest price possible. Here are some hints that will help:

a) Look for sale items
b) Don't buy on impulse
c) Only use free cash funds to buy - not by credit card
d) Ask yourself "Do I really need this?" twice or three times before you hand over your hard-earned cash.
e) If there is something you really want - wait for it to go on sale.
f) Don't buy your items at the height of the fashion or the fad, wait a few weeks.

Step 6. Set aside a savings amount.

A target of 20% of your take-home salary is recommended. However, saving any of your salary is a good start. Set your goal and stick to it. The idea is to match your lifestyle to your income. Having some savings can help in emergencies, pay a larger deposit on your next car or be the beginnings of your holiday or retirement nest egg.

Step 7. Don't compare yourself with others.

Your task of living within your means will be made easier if you don't compare your lifestyle with others. You don't know, but their finances may be in a worse state than yours. If you want a better lifestyle, then save for it and/or work out ways to increase your income.

These are just the very beginning steps that you can take towards getting your finances in shape. With a little commitment and the right tools, you will succeed.

About The Author
Bruce Hokin has designed a simple budget tool called "5 Steps to Freedom" Personal Budget. It based on his extensive background as a qualified, experienced accountant, manager, consultant and financial adviser. You can be on your way to financial freedom within the hour. It is available at his website

Refinance Student Loans - How and Why?

Syndicated by Article City, Knowledge Level: , Keywords: refinance student loans - how and why?
: Vanessa McHooley

Let’s face facts. Going to college these days, especially private universities, is no cheap task and can put you well into debt before you even enter the “real world” for yourself. Most people, especially young college students, do not have the tens of thousands of dollars to pony up every year for college tuition either. Therefore, most college students choose to use student loans to put themselves through college, whereby they can pay the tuition without breaking a sweat. However, when it comes time to graduate from college and pay these student loans back, many people do not know where to begin. How about refinancing these loans before you even start anything else?

Advantages of Refinancing

By refinancing your student loans, you can save yourself hundreds, even thousands of dollars before you start repaying your loans, an option that many people fail to use. When you leave college, chances are that you have a variety of loans on the books with an array of different interest rates attached to each one. Refinancing these loans can help you to lower these interest rates, or, at least, bring some of them down, thus lowering your monthly payments and saving YOU money in the end. Even if all of your interest rates cannot be refinanced, chances are that you can save money in some places through refinancing.

Where To Refinance?

But, when it comes to refinancing, where do you turn to find a reliable place to lower your interest rates? The Internet may just be your one-stop-shop for refinancing your student loans from college, as you can search a variety of sites that offer refinancing services to suit your needs. Be careful though. Not every web site offering financial help will actually help you, and non-credible sites may actually just be out to steal a buck from you. Deal with those college student loan web sites that deliver real refinancing results and are properly licensed. Then, sit back and enjoy your money-saving tactics.

This article is distributed by NextStudent. At NextStudent, we believe that getting an education is the best investment you can make, and were dedicated to helping you pursue your education dreams by making college funding as easy as possible. We invite you to learn more about Refinance Student Loans at