Baxter International's Debt Overview

Shares of Baxter International BAX moved lower by 8.79% in the past three months. Before we understand the importance of debt, let us look at how much debt Baxter International has.

Baxter International's Debt

According to the Baxter International’s most recent financial statement as reported on July 30, 2020, total debt is at $6.37 billion, with $6.05 billion in long-term debt and $319.00 million in current debt. Adjusting for $4.08 billion in cash-equivalents, the company has a net debt of $2.29 billion.

To understand the degree of financial leverage a company has, shareholders look at the debt ratio. Considering Baxter International’s $19.46 billion in total assets, the debt-ratio is at 0.33. Generally speaking, a debt-ratio more than one 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. A debt ratio of 40% might be higher for one industry and normal for another.

Why Debt Is Important

Besides equity, debt is an important factor in the capital structure of a company, and contributes to its growth. Due to its lower financing cost compared to equity, it becomes an attractive option for executives trying to raise capital.

However, interest-payment obligations can have an adverse impact on the cash-flow of the company. 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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