Determinants of Capital Structure in Pakistan”

Topics: Capital structure, Finance, Modigliani-Miller theorem Pages: 5 (1575 words) Published: June 22, 2013
Capital structure refers to the combination of asset financing from different available sources. Normally the companies have two choices, either to finance the assets from internal source that is termed as retained earnings or from external source that splits into debt and equity. A firm’s capital structure is than the composition of its liabilities. In reality, capital structure of firms may be highly complex and consist of number of sources. These sources start from the retained earnings and ends in hybrid securities. The source of funding a capital is also diversified into short term and long term financing. Modigliani-Miller theorem

The thinking of capital structure was initiated by the Modigliani-Miller theorem, proposed by Franco Modigliani and Merton miller. They made two findings under perfect market conditions. Their first proposition was that the value of a firm is independent of its capital structure and the second proposition stated that the cost of equity for a leverage firm is equal to the cost of equity for an un-leveraged firm with addition of premium for financial risk. They extended their analysis by including the effect of taxes and risky debt. Under a classical tax system, the tax deductibility of interest makes debt financing valuable. It means the increase in proportion of debt in capital decreases the cost of capital. And eventually the optimal structure would have no equity at all. Later on it was revealed that the imperfections of real world must be the cause of capital structure relevance to firm value. The trade-off and pecking order theory try to address some of these imperfections, by relaxing the M&M assumptions. Trade-off theory

Trade-off theory adds another variable called financial distress in the previous studies and explains that although there is an advantage of debt financing and that reaps from the tax benefit shield. But a time come when the high debt give birth to bankruptcy cost and when the optimal level of capital structure is exceeded than the marginal benefit from the tax shield become less attractive than the cost of financial distress occurred due to debt financing. Therefore there exist an optimal debt and equity combination and companies should follow this optimal level of debt and capital ratio. This ratio is similar within one industry but may be different for different industries. The missing point of this theory is that it doesn’t explain the difference in the optimal capital structure ratio of the same industry. Pecking order theory

Pecking order theory tries to capture the costs of asymmetric information. That means the managers of a company has more and complete information about the company than investors. The theory states that company’s priorities their financing sources and prefer internal source of funding to external. The hierarchy of sources is such that whenever company needs new funds it tries to fulfill its requirement first from retained earnings than from debt and raise equity as last resort. The pecking order theory is famous by Myers & Majluf(1984) when they argues that equity is a less preferred means to raise capital because when managers issue new equity, investors believe that managers think that the firm is overvalued and managers are taking advantage of this over-valuation. As a result, investors will place a lower value to the new equity issuance. The capital structuring plays vital role in the long run financial decisions of the company. In this paper my focus is on debt financing decisions of the company. I have explored why the companies use this source and what are the factors that determine company’s capital structure decision. The capital structure was firstly discussed by Modigliani & Miller in 1958. Modigliani & Miller (1958), the theorem states that, in a perfect market, how a firm is financed is irrelevant to its value. Gay B. Hatfield (1994), demonstrated that the...
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