Market Overview

A Look Into Amazon.com's Debt

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Over the past three months, shares of Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) increased by 39.66%. Before we understand the importance of debt, let's look at how much debt Amazon.com has.

Amazon.com's Debt

Based on Amazon.com’s balance sheet as of May 1, 2020, long-term debt is at $23.44 billion and current debt is at $1.31 billion, amounting to $24.75 billion in total debt. Adjusted for $27.20 billion in cash-equivalents, the company's net debt is at $-2.45 billion.

To understand the degree of financial leverage a company has, shareholders look at the debt ratio. Considering Amazon.com’s $221.24 billion in total assets, the debt-ratio is at 0.11. Generally speaking, a debt-ratio more than 1 means that a large portion of debt is funded by assets. As the debt-ratio increases, so the does the risk of defaulting on loans, if interest rates were to increase. Different industries have different thresholds of tolerance for debt-ratios. For example, a debt ratio of 25% might be higher for one industry, whereas normal for another.

Why Shareholders Look At Debt?

Debt is an important factor in the capital structure of a company, and can help it attain growth. Debt usually has a relatively lower financing cost than equity, which makes it an attractive option for executives.

However, due to interest-payment obligations, cash-flow of a company can be impacted. Equity owners can keep excess profit, generated from the debt capital, when companies use the debt capital for its business operations.

 

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