NMIMS Assignment – Corporate Finance for April 2024

With the following information, calculate Degree of Operating, Financial and Total Leverage. Sharma & Co. had a sales of Rs. 25, 00,000 in their jewellery making business. That year they sold 15,000 units. The cost of production was as follows: Raw Material 450000 Labour 750000 Factory Overheads Fixed 120000 Variable 85000 Further the company incurred Selling and Distribution expenses of Rs. 90,000, towards advertising and other marketing overheads. The company also had borrowed Rs. 12,00,000 @ 8% interest rate.

Solution Hints:

Understanding Leverage in Finance: Enhancing Returns and Managing Risks

In the intricate world of finance, leverage plays a pivotal role, offering individuals, companies, and investors the potential to amplify returns on investments. Leverage involves the strategic use of borrowed capital or financial instruments to increase the potential gains or losses associated with an investment. While it presents opportunities for enhanced returns, it also introduces an elevated level of risk, making it essential for prudent financial management.

The Concept of Leverage: Leverage is essentially a mechanism that allows entities to control a more significant amount of assets with a smaller investment. By utilizing debt or other financial instruments, investors can potentially boost their returns, a practice commonly employed in various financial markets.

Types of Leverage in Finance:

  1. Operating Leverage: Operating leverage measures the extent to which a company relies on fixed costs in its operations. It gauges the sensitivity of a company’s operating income to fluctuations in sales. When fixed costs are high, and variable costs are low, the company is said to have high operating leverage. This implies that even a minor change in sales can lead to a substantial percentage change in profits. Formula for Degree of Operating Leverage (DOL): DOL=Q×(PV)/ Q×(PV)​ -F Where:
    • Q is the quantity of units sold,P is the selling price per unit,V is the variable cost per unit,F is the fixed operating costs.
    Operating leverage is a crucial metric for companies as it reflects how efficiently they utilize fixed costs in their operations. A higher DOL indicates a greater reliance on fixed costs, bringing both opportunities and risks.
  2. Financial Leverage: Financial leverage involves the use of debt or financial instruments to magnify the potential return on equity. It quantifies the extent to which a company employs debt to fund its operations and investments. While financial leverage can enhance returns, it also introduces an element of risk, especially if not managed prudently. The debt-to-equity ratio is a common measure used to assess financial leverage. Formula for Degree of Financial Leverage (DFL): DFL=PV/ PV-F​ Where:
    • P is the selling price per unitV is the variable cost per unit,F is the fixed financial costs.
    Financial leverage is a double-edged sword, offering the potential for increased returns but also amplifying the impact of losses. Companies often strive to strike a balance between debt and equity to optimize their capital structure and manage financial risk effectively.

Leverage in finance is a dynamic strategy employed by individuals, companies, and investors to optimize returns on investments. The two primary types of leverage, operating leverage and financial leverage, play distinct roles in shaping the financial landscape. Operating leverage measures how much a company relies on fixed costs in its operations. This metric is crucial for assessing a company’s efficiency in utilizing fixed costs and understanding how changes in sales can impact profits. High operating leverage can lead to significant percentage changes in profits with minor fluctuations in sales, presenting both opportunities and risks. Financial leverage involves using debt or financial instruments to enhance the return on equity. While financial leverage can amplify returns, it introduces a level of risk, emphasizing the importance of managing debt levels carefully. The debt-to-equity ratio is a key indicator used to evaluate a company’s financial leverage, guiding prudent decision-making in capital structure management.

In the intricate dance of financial strategies, understanding and optimizing leverage become paramount. Striking the right balance between operating and financial leverage is crucial for companies seeking to maximize returns while mitigating risks. As investors navigate the complexities of financial markets, a nuanced understanding of leverage empowers them to make informed decisions, leveraging opportunities for growth while safeguarding against potential downturns.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Leverage in Indian Companies

Leverage serves as a financial strategy in the corporate landscape, allowing Indian companies to magnify returns and propel growth. In the dynamic Indian market, understanding the nuanced advantages and disadvantages of leverage is pivotal for informed financial decisions.

Advantages of Leverage:

  1. Amplified Returns on Equity with Leverage:
    • Benefit: Leverage empowers Indian companies to magnify returns on equity, optimizing profitability and enhancing shareholder value through strategic use of borrowed capital.
  2. Tax-Efficiency through Leverage:
    • Benefit: Leveraging debt in the Indian tax framework offers companies a significant advantage. Interest payments on debt are often tax-deductible, providing a tax shield that reduces taxable income and makes leverage an attractive financing avenue.
  3. Strategic Capital Structure Flexibility:
    • Benefit: Leverage grants companies in India the flexibility to structure their capital strategically. Balancing debt and equity allows efficient resource allocation and effective management of financial obligations, particularly crucial for optimizing financing solutions.
  4. Fueling Asset Expansion and Growth with Leverage:
    • Benefit: Leverage acts as a catalyst for asset expansion, enabling Indian companies to pursue growth initiatives without the need for extensive equity investment. This is particularly advantageous in capital-intensive sectors like infrastructure and manufacturing.
  5. Enhanced Market Perception through Leverage:
    • Benefit: Investors often perceive companies with a judicious mix of debt and equity as financially astute. A balanced leverage approach signals confidence in meeting financial commitments and funding expansion plans, potentially attracting a broader investor base.

Disadvantages of Leverage:

  1. Elevated Financial Risk Linked to Leverage:
    • Drawback: The major drawback of leverage is the heightened financial risk. Indian companies utilizing leverage must contend with regular interest payments, and failure to meet these obligations can lead to financial distress, credit rating downgrades, and potential bankruptcy.
  2. Interest Cost Impact of Leverage:
    • Drawback: Despite tax deductions, interest payments represent a fixed cost. During economic downturns or rising interest rates, managing the burden of interest payments becomes more challenging, impacting the profitability of leveraged companies.
  3. Constrained Financial Flexibility due to Leverage:
    • Drawback: Excessive leverage can curtail a company’s financial flexibility. High debt levels may limit the ability to embark on new projects, make strategic investments, or weather economic downturns, hindering long-term sustainability.
  4. Market Volatility Sensitivity Induced by Leverage:
    • Drawback: In the Indian stock market, characterized by volatility, companies with high leverage may experience heightened stock price fluctuations. Investors may react strongly to changes in financial health, contributing to increased stock price volatility.
  5. Credit Rating Sensitivity to Leverage:
    • Drawback: Credit rating agencies play a pivotal role in assessing creditworthiness. High leverage makes companies more sensitive to credit rating downgrades, affecting their ability to borrow at favorable terms and potentially increasing borrowing costs.

In the ever-evolving Indian business landscape, where economic conditions fluctuate, understanding the nuanced advantages and disadvantages of leverage is paramount. Achieving the delicate balance between debt and equity, considering market conditions, and maintaining financial discipline is essential for Indian companies to leverage their potential while safeguarding against potential pitfalls. Tailoring leveraging strategies to individual circumstances and risk tolerances is critical for success in the dynamic Indian market.

Leverage can be a double-edged sword. While it has the potential to magnify returns, it also increases the level of risk. If an investment performs well, leverage can lead to higher profits. However, if the investment performs poorly, the losses can be more significant, and there is a risk of financial distress.

Investors and companies must carefully consider the level of leverage they use and understand the associated risks. Leverage is a crucial concept in financial management and investment decision-making, and its appropriate use depends on the specific circumstances and risk tolerance of the individual or entity involved.


  • Sales = Rs. 25,00,000
  • Units Sold = 15,000
  • Raw Material Cost = Rs. 4,50,000
  • Labour Cost = Rs. 7,50,000
  • Fixed Factory Overheads = Rs. 1,20,000
  • Variable Factory Overheads = Rs. 85,000
  • Selling and Distribution Expenses = Rs. 90,000
  • Borrowed Amount = Rs. 12,00,000
  • Interest Rate = 8%

Calculation Steps:

  1. Calculate the Total Variable Costs
  2. Calculate the Contribution Margin
  3. Calculate the Operating Income
  4. Calculate the Degree of Operating Leverage (DOL)
  5. Calculate the Degree of Financial Leverage (DFL)
  6. Calculate the Degree of Total Leverage (DTL)
Formulae of operating leverage, financial leverage and total leverage
Degree of Operating Leverage
Degree of Financial Leverage

Degree of Financial Leverage (DFL) is calculated using the formula:



  • P is the selling price per unit,
  • V is the variable cost per unit,
  • F is the fixed operating costs.
  • The numerator, (P – V), represents the contribution margin per unit, which is the amount of money available to cover fixed costs and generate profit after variable costs have been paid.
  • The denominator, (P – V – F), represents the operating profit, which is the profit earned after all costs, both variable and fixed, have been deducted from sales revenue.

Therefore, the DFL ratio essentially measures how much a change in the contribution margin (due to changes in sales volume) is magnified into a change in the operating profit. DFL formula assumes a linear relationship between costs and sales volume, which may not always be the case in real-world scenarios.

Degree of Combined leverage

Calculation Results:

DescriptionAmount (Rs.)
Total Variable Costs13,85,000
Contribution Margin11,15,000
Operating Income2,40,000
Degree of Operating Leverage (DOL)4.65
Degree of Financial Leverage (DFL)1.25
Degree of Total Leverage (DTL)5.81

These leverage measures provide insights into the impact of changes in sales on the company’s operating and financial performance.

Note: The above posts only clarifies the process of solving the assignment and not the complete solution. The images has been taken from ICAI Books.

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