Commercial paper as a source of short term financing

The discount represents interest to the investor in the period to maturity. CP is typically issued in bearer form, although some issues are in registered form. CP was first issued in the United Kingdom in , and subsequently in other European countries. Originally the CP market was restricted to borrowers with high credit rating, and although lower-rated borrowers do now issue CP, sometimes by obtaining credit enhancements or setting up collateral arrangements, issuance in the market is still dominated by highly-rated companies. The majority of issues are very short-term, from 30 to 90 days in maturity; it is extremely rare to observe paper with a maturity of more than days or nine months.

Commercial Paper -Financial Market -In Hindi -Only Audio

This is because of regulatory requirements in the US, 8 which states that debt instruments with a maturity of less than days need not be registered. Companies therefore issue CP with a maturity lower than nine months and so avoid the administration costs associated with registering issues with the SEC. In the US over a third of all CP is purchased by money market unit trusts, known as mutual funds; other investors include pension fund managers, retail or commercial banks, local authorities and corporate treasurers.

Although there is a secondary market in CP, very little trading activity takes place since investors generally hold CP until maturity. This is to be expected because investors purchase CP that match their specific maturity requirement. When an investor does wish to sell paper, it can be sold back to the dealer or, where the issuer has placed the paper directly in the market and not via an investment bank , it can be sold back to the issuer.

In order to have a standardized use and reporting of commercial papers , the CBN prescribes the following essential features of this financial instrument:. As with bankers' acceptances, funds collected from customers for investment in commercial papers should be treated as deposits until such funds are invested in the instruments. Investors in commercial papers should also be made aware of the identity of the issuers of the instruments. Commercial papers should only be guaranteed and not accepted since the intermediating bank is only a secondary obligor.

When a bank invests in a commercial paper, by disbursing its own funds, the transaction should be reported on-balance sheet and treated as a loan. However, if the bank merely guarantees the instrument, it should be shown off-balance sheet as a contingent liability. Where a commercial paper, which had been guaranteed by a bank crystallizes by virtue of the inability of the issuer to pay on maturity, the bank as the secondary obligor is bound to redeem its guarantee by disbursing funds to the beneficiary.

The transaction should then be reported on-balance sheet as a loan. The bank may charge an appropriate commission in line with the bankers' tariff for providing the guarantee.

Differences Between Commercial Loans & Commercial Papers

From the foregoing, it is apparent that a commercial paper could actually become a normal credit facility. But this depends on its treatment by the bank. Does the bank want to directly invest in the commercial paper by disbursing the required funds to the borrower?

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Should it wait to see if the commercial paper, as offered by the borrower, would succeed or fail and invest when the latter happens? What will happen if a guaranteed commercial paper fails in the market and, as the secondary obligor, the bank redeems it?

In the first two cases, the act of direct investment in a commercial paper exposes a bank to on-balance sheet credit risk. In the third instance, the nature of the bank's liability will change from contingent to direct exposure. In all cases, whether a bank takes credit risk or not underlies the caution it should exercise in marketing a CP on behalf of its customer. Short-dated instruments in the municipal market are known as notes. There are also tax-exempt commercial paper , and variable-rate obligations which are similar to floating-rate notes.

They are similar to discount instruments in the money markets, and are often issued as short-term borrowings to be redeemed after receipt of tax or other proceeds. Essentially the notes are issued to provide working capital, because the receipt of cash flows from taxation and other local government sources is irregular. The typical maturity of a note is three months, while the longest maturity is 12 months. In most cases tax-exempt notes are issued with credit backing in the form of a bank letter of credit, a bond insurance policy or a lending line at a bank.

Municipal borrowers issue commercial paper, which is similar to corporate CP and may have a maturity ranging from 1 to days. It is known as tax-exempt commercial paper.


Another money market instrument is the variable-rate demand obligation VRDO. This is a floating-rate security that has a long-dated maturity but has a coupon that is re-set at the very short-dated interest rate, either the overnight rate or the seven-day rate. The bonds may be out to the issuer at par.

Learn more about Commercial Paper

This represents the total flow of cash between the firm and its borrowers and lenders during the year excluding interest payments. This section of the cash flow statement reveals that DaimlerChrysler has had to raise additional capital to fund its deficit between cash flow from operations and investments. This was all provided by raising additional debt finance. This reflects that DaimlerChrysler issued short-term debt certificates and borrowed more from banks in short-term debt thus increasing cash inflows.

This was old debt refinanced during the year and is an outflow of cash. We will see that this net increase in debt of course increases the financial leverage of the firm which will have both financial advantages and disadvantages. This tells us that DaimlerChrysler raised this amount of additional cash flow by issuing more shares. The most significant cash outflow to the equity markets was the payment of a dividend to shareholders.

It will be noticed that this amount exceeds current income. This implies that the dividend caused a reduction in retained earnings during the year since they were partly provided for from reserves. This is a purely legal matter since, as mentioned earlier, the retained earnings are not kept in a separate cash account for distribution.

This amount represents a special tax refund deduction triggered by the payment of the special dividend. It will be noted that this amount was accrued as a reduction of tax expense on the income statement and held as an accrued liability in the balance sheet. Therefore in the cash flow statement it is recorded as a non-cash adjustment to calculate cash flow. Since it has a cash flow effect in the year it has to be accounted for — classifying it as an equity flow makes the most sense since it was entirely linked to the dividend distribution.

This represents the surplus of finance raised and finance required and is reflected in an increased cash balance which is similar to an investment in cash. It is made up as follows:. The difference is equal to the change in the cash equivalents longer than 3 months. Therefore the cash flow statement analyses changes in cash and cash equivalent of less than 3 months maturity.

This is quite unusual and not an obviously helpful way to set out the statement. The use of a bracket for a decrease in cash on the DaimlerChrylser cash flow statement is confusing since a decrease in cash is equivalent to a disinvestment or an inflow. Since the group holds cash balances in many currencies changes in the exchange rate against the DM and then the Euro will cause an apparent inflow or outflow of cash in Euro terms. This arises because the cash balances held in foreign currencies at the start of the period would have been translated into DM and Euros at the exchange rate at that date.

The same amounts in foreign currencies held at the end of the period are translated at the year end rate of exchange to the DM Euro.

An Introduction to Commercial Paper

This is shown as a natural part of the analysis of the change in cash balance. Since the amount is an increase in cash it suggests that in aggregate the Dm worked against these currencies in which cash balances were held over the period. A money market fund is an open-ended fund that invests in short-term fixed-income securities such as US Treasury bills and commercial papers.

Money market funds seek to limit exposure to losses from credit, market, and liquidity risks. Money market funds consist of institutional money funds and retail money funds. Institutional money funds are marketed to corporations and government bodies. These funds are characterized by high minimum investment and low-expense share classes. Retail money funds are offered to individuals and exist in the form of government-only funds, nongovernment funds, and tax-free funds. Safety and liquidity are the most important advantages of the money market funds.

Ultrashort bond funds are mutual funds, similar to money market funds, that invest in bonds with extremely short maturities. Money market funds consist of retail money market funds and institutional money market funds. Institutional money market funds are used by businesses, pension funds, state and local governments, and large account investors. David P. Investment banks have historically relied on large amounts of short-term financing to fund their operations. The most popular forms of short-term financing are commercial paper and repurchase repo agreements.

In this exchange, the buyer receives securities as collateral to protect against default. The introduction of Commercial Paper in India was considered the beginning of financial reforms in India. Post liberalization the Indian government introduced many short-term instruments one of which was Commercial papers.

Let us take a look. Should you accept it? This was just an example to give you an idea of what commercial papers are.