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Cost of Debt: How to Calculate Cost of Debt

how to find cost of debt

The better the company’s credit rating, the safer the investment, and therefore the lower interest payments they need to offer for their bonds. That is why Microsoft offers lower interest rates than Hertz, which was on the verge of bankruptcy earlier. Estimating the cost of debt is relatively straightforward, but there are a few items you need to keep in mind when using the cost of debt formula. The cost of debt and the cost of equity are part of the discount rate we use in a DCF (discounted cash flow) model to find the future value of those cash flows. Below is an example scenario where we need to calculate the effective interest rate and apply the tax impact to calculate the cost of debt on the loan. In the example above, the pre-tax cost of debt—also known as the effective interest rate—that your business is paying to service all of its debts throughout the year would equal 5.25%.

how to find cost of debt

The face value of the bond is $1,000, which is linked with a negative sign placed in front to indicate it is a cash outflow. Since the interest rate is a semi-annual figure, we must convert it to an annualized figure by multiplying it by two. The diligence conducted by the lender used the most recent financial performance and credit metrics of the borrower as of that specific period (i.e. the past), as opposed to the current date. This post is to be used for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, business, or tax advice. Each person should consult his or her own attorney, business advisor, or tax advisor with respect to matters referenced in this post.

How to Calculate WACC

For example, a bank might lend $1 million in debt capital to a company at an annual interest rate of 6.0% with a ten-year term. Even though you’re paying your friend $100 in interest, because of the $40 in savings, really you’re only paying an additional $60. For example, let’s say your friend offers you a $1,000 loan at 10% interest, and your company’s tax rate is 40%. Because interest payments are deductible and can affect your tax situation, most people pay more attention to the after-tax cost of debt than the pre-tax one. The effective pre-tax interest rate your business is paying to service all its debts is 5.3%. The cost of debt is the return that a company provides to its debtholders and creditors.

How much is the cost of debt?

The cost of debt is the average interest rate your company pays across all of its debts: loans, bonds, credit card interest, etc.

Keep in mind that the interest expense that we find on the income statement represents the total interest paid for both debt and leases. Keep in mind that most companies choose to use debt as a means of financing because it is markedly cheaper than equity. Michelle Lambright Black is a nationally recognized credit expert with two decades of experience. Finally, you input all of the figures above into the cost of debt formula. Because interest rates have been rapidly rising throughout 2022 and may continue to rise in early 2023, it may be difficult to find low-interest rate options. If that’s the case, you may want to consider ways to get out of debt or reduce the debt at your company.

What Makes the Cost of Debt Increase?

That yield spread can then be added to the risk-free rate to find the cost of debt of the company. This approach is particularly useful for private companies that don’t have a directly observable cost of debt in the market. But often, you can realize tax savings if you have deductible interest expenses on your loans. Some interest expenses are tax deductible, meaning you will receive a tax break for some of your interest paid and won’t actually have to pay for all the interest charged. You can calculate the after-tax cost of debt by subtracting your income tax savings from the interest you paid to get a more accurate idea of total cost of debt. We discuss how to calculate complex cost of debt below, which includes the impact of taxes.

How do you calculate cost of debt in WACC?

Take the weighted average current yield to maturity of all outstanding debt then multiply it one minus the tax rate and you have the after-tax cost of debt to be used in the WACC formula.

For example, a company has total debt on its balance sheet of $100 million and pays $5 million in interest expense each year. If all else fails, you can always use the 10-Year Treasury rates as a proxy for the interest rate for a company’s debt, especially a company relying on short-term debt as its source of financing. Long-term rates are better at approximating interest rate costs over time because they match the long-term focus of calculating free cash flows and their present-day values.

Nav’s Verdict: Cost of Debt

Capital structure deals with how a firm finances its overall operations and growth through different sources of funds, which may include debt such as bonds or loans. The after-tax cost of debt is included in the calculation of the cost of capital of a business. Currently, the US effective tax rate for corporations is 21%, but Congress might raise those rates per the sitting president’s wishes. If those rates do rise, that will impact the cost of debt for every publicly traded company and is something to keep in mind.

  • The interest rate is typically observable, but you could also calculate the interest rate by dividing annual interest expense into the company’s outstanding debt to get the effective interest rate.
  • The higher a business’s credit score, the less risky they appear to lenders — and it’s easier for lenders to give lower interest rates to less risky borrowers.
  • Equity financing tends to be more expensive because of the higher returns yielded from the stock market.

To calculate the after-tax cost of debt, you will need to use the following formula. The cost of debt is lower as a principal component of a loan keeps on decreasing; if the loan amount has been used wisely and can generate a net income of more than $2,586, then taking a loan is beneficial. Now let’s take one more to understand the formula of interest expense and cost of debt. As we learned from our pre-tax calculation, our effective interest rate is 8%.