Capital Structure – Meaning and Factors Determining Capital Structure

Meaning of Capital Structure
Capital Structure is referred to as the ratio of different kinds of securities raised by a firm as long-term finance. The capital structure involves two decisions-

Type of securities to be issued are equity shares, preference shares and long term borrowings (Debentures).
Relative ratio of securities can be determined by process of capital gearing. On this basis, the companies are divided into two-
Highly geared companies – Those companies whose proportion of equity capitalization is small.
Low geared companies – Those companies whose equity capital dominates total capitalization.
For instance – There are two companies A and B. Total capitalization amounts to be USD 200,000 in each case. The ratio of equity capital to total capitalization in company A is USD 50,000, while in company B, ratio of equity capital is USD 150,000 to total capitalization, i.e, in Company A, proportion is 25% and in company B, proportion is 75%. In such cases, company A is considered to be a highly geared company and company B is low geared company.

Factors Determining Capital Structure
Trading on Equity- The word “equity” denotes the ownership of the company. Trading on equity means taking advantage of equity share capital to borrowed funds on reasonable basis. It refers to additional profits that equity shareholders earn because of issuance of debentures and preference shares. It is based on the thought that if the rate of dividend on preference capital and the rate of interest on borrowed capital is lower than the general rate of company’s earnings, equity shareholders are at advantage which means a company should go for a judicious blend of preference shares, equity shares as well as debentures. Trading on equity becomes more important when expectations of shareholders are high.
Degree of control- In a company, it is the directors who are so called elected representatives of equity shareholders. These members have got maximum voting rights in a concern as compared to the preference shareholders and debenture holders. Preference shareholders have reasonably less voting rights while debenture holders have no voting rights. If the company’s management policies are such that they want to retain their voting rights in their hands, the capital structure consists of debenture holders and loans rather than equity shares.
Flexibility of financial plan- In an enterprise, the capital structure should be such that there is both contractions as well as relaxation in plans. Debentures and loans can be refunded back as the time requires. While equity capital cannot be refunded at any point which provides rigidity to plans. Therefore, in order to make the capital structure possible, the company should go for issue of debentures and other loans.
Choice of investors- The company’s policy generally is to have different categories of investors for securities. Therefore, a capital structure should give enough choice to all kind of investors to invest. Bold and adventurous investors generally go for equity shares and loans and debentures are generally raised keeping into mind conscious investors.
Capital market condition- In the lifetime of the company, the market price of the shares has got an important influence. During the depression period, the company’s capital structure generally consists of debentures and loans. While in period of boons and inflation, the company’s capital should consist of share capital generally equity shares.
Period of financing- When company wants to raise finance for short period, it goes for loans from banks and other institutions; while for long period it goes for issue of shares and debentures.
Cost of financing- In a capital structure, the company has to look to the factor of cost when securities are raised. It is seen that debentures at the time of profit earning of company prove to be a cheaper source of finance as compared to equity shares where equity shareholders demand an extra share in profits.
Stability of sales- An established business which has a growing market and high sales turnover, the company is in position to meet fixed commitments. Interest on debentures has to be paid regardless of profit. Therefore, when sales are high, thereby the profits are high and company is in better position to meet such fixed commitments like interest on debentures and dividends on preference shares. If company is having unstable sales, then the company is not in position to meet fixed obligations. So, equity capital proves to be safe in such cases.
Sizes of a company- Small size business firms capital structure generally consists of loans from banks and retained profits. While on the other hand, big companies having goodwill, stability and an established profit can easily go for issuance of shares and debentures as well as loans and borrowings from financial institutions. The bigger the size, the wider is total capitalization.

Financial Planning – Definition, Objectives and Importance

Definition of Financial Planning
Financial Planning is the process of estimating the capital required and determining it’s competition. It is the process of framing financial policies in relation to procurement, investment and administration of funds of an enterprise.

Objectives of Financial Planning
Financial Planning has got many objectives to look forward to:

Determining capital requirements- This will depend upon factors like cost of current and fixed assets, promotional expenses and long- range planning. Capital requirements have to be looked with both aspects: short- term and long- term requirements.
Determining capital structure- The capital structure is the composition of capital, i.e., the relative kind and proportion of capital required in the business. This includes decisions of debt- equity ratio- both short-term and long- term.
Framing financial policies with regards to cash control, lending, borrowings, etc.
A finance manager ensures that the scarce financial resources are maximally utilized in the best possible manner at least cost in order to get maximum returns on investment.
Importance of Financial Planning
Financial Planning is process of framing objectives, policies, procedures, programmes and budgets regarding the financial activities of a concern. This ensures effective and adequate financial and investment policies. The importance can be outlined as-

Adequate funds have to be ensured.
Financial Planning helps in ensuring a reasonable balance between outflow and inflow of funds so that stability is maintained.
Financial Planning ensures that the suppliers of funds are easily investing in companies which exercise financial planning.
Financial Planning helps in making growth and expansion programmes which helps in long-run survival of the company.
Financial Planning reduces uncertainties with regards to changing market trends which can be faced easily through enough funds.
Financial Planning helps in reducing the uncertainties which can be a hindrance to growth of the company. This helps in ensuring stability an d profitability in concern.

Does cross-border banking enhance competition and cost efficiency? Evidence from Africa


We examine how cross-border banking affects competition and efficiency in Africa by distinguishing African and non-African CBB.

Increased competition induced by CBB is mainly driven by African CBB.

More efficient banks tend to weaken the effect of African CBB on competition.

Only non-African CBB encourages cost efficiency because of their global advantage.

Macroeconomic and institutional factors drive banking competition and efficiency.

Over the last two decades, the unprecedented expansion of cross-border banking on the African banking market has raised concern about their effects on host countries’ markets. This paper investigates to what extent this expansion has affected competition and cost efficiency in the African banking market using a sample of 429 active commercial banks from 2000 to 2015. Results show that CBB activities enhance competition, mainly driven by African CBB. At the regional scale, these effects are more substantial in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) because African CBBs have more expanded their activities in SSA. We also document that more efficient banks alleviate the competition induced by the expansion of African CBBs. The latter exhibit lower efficiency and therefore do not encourage bank efficiency. This study further shows that macroeconomic conditions and institutional variables are essential drivers of bank competition and cost efficiency in Africa. These results are robust to alternative estimation techniques (system-GMM, Quantile regression-Adaptative MCMC, Matching) and proxies of competition and cost efficiency.