**Question 1: Capital Expenditure Decisions and Investment Criteria**

Bodmin plc

Bodmin plc is a highly profitable electronics company that manufactures a range of innovative products for industrial use. Its success is based to a large extent on the ability of the company's development group to generate new ideas that result in commercially viable products. The latest of these products is just about to undergo some final tests and a decision has to be taken whether or not to proceed with an investment in the facilities required for manufacturing. You have been asked to undertake an evaluation of this investment.

The company has already spent £750,000 on the development of this product. The final testing of the product will cost about £40,000. The head of the development group is very confident that the tests will be successful based on the work already undertaken. Another company has already offered Bodmin £1.60 million for the product's patent and an exclusive right to its manufacture and sale, even though the final tests are still to be completed. This sum being offered is well in excess of the cost of the product's development, but the company's management have decided to delay their response to the offer until the result of the investment evaluation is available.

The company anticipates that the product will remain competitive for the next five years after which it is likely to be displaced by some new product that are constantly being introduced as the underlying technology evolves. In the first year it is anticipated that 20,000 units will be sold at a price of £170. From year two through to year four sales are expected to be 30,000 units per annum, but are expected to fall back to 20,000 units in year five.

The product will be manufactured in one of the company's factories that has considerable spare capacity: it is most unlikely that the space required by the manufacture of this product will be required for any other purpose over the next five years. For the company's internal accounting purposes all products are charged for the factory space that they utilise and this will amount to £50,000 per annum. The additional costs incurred by the company in the form of heating, lighting and power only amount to £30,000 per annum.

The machinery required for the manufacture of the product will cost £1,200,000. It will have to be depreciated for tax purposes on the basis of an annual 25 per cent writing down allowance (ie. 25 per cent of the remaining book value of the asset, the initial purchase price less the sum of the allowances claimed in previous years). At the end of the five year period the machinery will be sold or retained for use in the manufacture of other products. The resale value of machinery of this nature after being used for five years is likely to be about 30 per cent of its purchase price.

Use will also be made of some equipment already owned by the company. This could be sold today for £70,000 and is expected to maintain its resale value even if it is used for the next five years. This equipment is fully depreciated for tax purposes - it has a zero book value - but is still in good working order.

The cost of the labour and components required for the manufacture of the product has been estimated at £120 per unit for the first year, with labour accounting for 60 per cent of the cost and the components for the other 40 per cent. There are also fixed costs of £150,000 per annum stemming from the manufacturing process. The product will also be charged an allowance for general overheads through the management accounting system and this is set at 5 per cent of a product's annual revenues. The overheads include the head office expenditure and the company's expenditure on new product development - an important expense for the company. The initial marketing of the product will cost £200,000.

It is anticipated that the company will have to invest in working capital - holding finished products equivalent to 20 per cent of next year's unit sales, 25 per cent of the components required for the next year, and it is expected that debtors and creditors will just about offset each other. The tax rate is 30 per cent and the required rate of return on investments of this nature is 14 per cent.

a) Determine the investment's net present value, the internal rate of return, payback period and the discounted payback period. All key assumptions should be specified and explained and an interpretation provided of results for each of the investment criteria specified. You should identify the costs and benefits that you think should be included in a rational decision making process.

b) Assess how sensitive the calculated NPV is to three inputs employed in the analysis. Provide an interpretation of your results and comment on how valuable you think this analysis may be in taking a decision on the investment.

c) Assume that the annual rate of inflation is expected to be 4 per cent per annum for the next five years. Also assume that the required rate of return of 14 per cent you employed above is a market determined rate and incorporates an allowance for the expected rate of inflation of 4 per cent. Explain how you would take the expected rate of inflation into account in a revised analysis. (Part (a) of the question should be completed on the basis that the expected rate of inflation is zero.)

**Question 2: Valuation of a Company's Shares**

a) Identify the current price earnings ratios for three companies traded on the London Stock Exchange and indicate how the ratio has changed over the last five years. Discuss the factors that might explain the differences between the price earnings ratios for the three companies and the changes that have occurred in their price earnings ratios over the five year period. (Choose companies with a range of P/E ratios to give you one with a relatively low vale, one with a relatively high value, and another with a middling value.

You should use the insights provided by valuation models on the determinants of the price-earnings ratios in your discussion, but you should also discuss the role of any other factors that influence the reported values of price-earnings ratios.

**Question 3**

Identify a company that has made a rights issue over the last three years

i) Provide comments on the financial position and performance of the company and the rationale provided for the issue.

ii) Specify the terms of the issue, the anticipated ex-rights price and calculate the value of a right.

iii) Demonstrate that an investor at the time of the issue will in principle be equally well off from investing in the issue or selling the rights they have been allocated.

iv) Comment on the market's reaction to the announcement of the issue. Use financial theory to try to explain the reaction..

**Question 4**

The attached file (Portfolio Analysis 2012-13) gives 60 monthly returns for thirty securities drawn from the FT ALL Share Index for the period January 2001 and December 2005. (These months were chosen to avoid the period of the financial and economic crises from 2007 onwards -.)

a)

i. Choose any five securities at random and determine (using Excel functions) the average monthly returns for each company for the 60 months along with the variance and standard deviation of these returns. Next construct an equally weighted portfolio made up of the five securities, and determine the series of monthly returns. On this basis determine the average return for the portfolio and the associated variance and standard deviation.

The averages, variances, and standard deviations can be derived using the relevant Excel functions. Utilise the Excel specification for population variance and standard deviation - STDEVP and VARP - in the calculations.

Explain the discuss the relationship between the average returns, average variance, and average standard deviation for the five securities and the average returns, variance, and standard deviation for the portfolio.

ii. Determine the co-variances for each pair of securities in the portfolio and on the basis of this information along with the variances for the returns for the securities calculate the average variance and average co-variance. Using the portfolio equation for an equally weighted portfolio, calculate the standard deviation of the returns on the portfolio. Compare your results to those obtained for the portfolio in part i above. Comment and explain your findings.

b) Choosing securities at random form equally weighted portfolios of 1, 5, 10, 15 and 20 Securities and determine the standard deviation of these portfolios. Next plot your results for the standard deviations against the number of securities in the portfolios.

Comment on your results and compare these with the results of the studies of naïve diversification.

(In undertaking this analysis you can derive the results for each of the portfolios using the Excel spread-sheet - there is no need to employ the portfolio equations and estimates of co-variances etc.)

c) Determine the beta of one security by regressing the returns for the share on the returns for the FT ALL Share Index (the last column in the spreadsheet). Comment on what the value of the beta (the slope coefficients in the regression) indicates and discuss the primary determinants of a share's beta.

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