Problems and Difficulties in Capital Budgeting

Problems and Difficulties in Capital Budgeting

*Dr.P.Shanmukha Rao  **Dr.N.V.S.Suryanarayana

 Capital Budgeting may also be defined as „The decision making process by which a firm evaluates the purchase of major fixed assets. It involves firm’s decision to invest its current funds for addition, disposition, modification and replacement of fixed assets.

„Capital budgeting is concerned with allocation of the firm’s scarce financial resources among the available market opportunities. The consideration of investment opportunities involves the comparison of the expected future streams of earnings from a project with immediate and subsequent streams of expenditure for it“. The problems in capital budgeting decisions may be as follows:

a)     Future uncertainty: Capital budgeting decisions involve long term commitments. However there is lot of uncertainty in the long term. The uncertainty may be with reference to cost of the project, future expected returns, future competition, legal provisions, political situation etc.

b)    Time Element: The implications of a Capital Budgeting decision are scattered over a long period. The cost and the benefits of a decision may occur at different points of time. The cost of a project is incurred immediately.  However, the investment is recovered over a number of years. The future benefits have to be adjusted to make them comparable with the cost. Longer the time period involved, greater would be the uncertainty.

c)     Difficulty in Quantification of impact: The finance manager may face difficulties in measuring the cost and benefits of projects in quantitative terms. For example, the new products proposed to be launched by a firm may result in increase or decrease in sales of other product proposed to be launched by a firm may result in increase or decrease in sales of other products already being sold by the same firm. It is very difficult to ascertain the extent of impact as the sales of other products may also be influenced by factors other than the launch of the new products.

Assumptions in capital budgeting:

The capital budgeting decision process is a multi-faced and analytical process. A number of assumptions are required to be made. These assumptions constitute a general set of conditions within which the financial aspects of different proposals are to be evaluated. Some of these assumptions are:

  1. Certainty with respect to cost and benefits: It is very difficult to estimate the cost and benefits of a proposal beyond 2-3 years in future. However, for a capital budgeting decision, It is assumed that the estimates of cost and benefits are reasonably accurate and certain.
  1. Profit motive: Another assumption is that the capital budgeting decisions are taken with a primary motive of increasing the profit of the firm. No other motive or goal influences the decision of the finance manager
  1. No Capital Rationing: The Capital Budgeting decisions in the present chapter assume that there is no scarcity of capital. It assumes that a proposal will be accepted or rejected on the strength of its merits alone. The proposal will not be considered in combination with other proposals to consider the maximum utilization of available funds.

The next step in the capital budgeting process is to various proposals.  The methods, which may be used for this purpose such as, pay back period method, Rate of return method, N.P.V and I.R.R etc. The project should be accepted if NPV is positive it should be clear that the acceptance rule using NPV method is to accept the investment project if its net present value is negative (NPV CASH OUTFLOW).  The positive net present value will result only if the project generates cash inflows at rate higher than the opportunity cost of capital.  A project may be accepted in NPV = 0.

The internal rate of return (IRR) method is another discounted cash flow technique, which makes account of the magnitude and timing of cash flows. Others terms used to describe the IRR Method are yield on investment, marginal efficiency of capital, rate of return over cost, time adjusted rate of internal return and so on. The concept of internal rate of return is quite simple to understand in the case of one-period projects. The IRR is calculated by interpolating the two rates. The accept project rule, using the IRR method, is to accept the project if its internal rate of return is higher than the opportunity cost of capital (r>k) note that k is also known as the required rate of return or cut-off rate. The project shall be rejected if its internal rate of return is lower than the opportunity cost of capital.

The project study is undertaken to analyze and understand the Capital Budgeting process in power sector, which gives mean exposure to practical implication of theory knowledge. To know about the company’s operations of using various Capital Budgeting techniques. To know how the company gets funds from various resources.    

The financial management is essentially concerned with the planning and   controlling of the financial resources of a firm. It expresses the procurement of funds along with their efficient use in order to maximize the firm’s benefit. The assets have two broad classification viz.,


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