# How to calculate Accounting Rate of Return

In conclusion, the accounting rate of return on the fixed asset investment is 17.5%. It offers a solid way of measuring financial performance for different projects and investments. XYZ Company is looking to invest in some new machinery to replace its current malfunctioning one. The new machine, which costs \$420,000, would increase annual revenue by \$200,000 and annual expenses by \$50,000. ARR comes in handy when investors or managers need to quickly compare the return of a project without needing to consider the time frame or payment schedule but rather just the profitability or lack thereof.

The accounting rate of return (ARR) is an indicator of the performance or profitability of an investment. XYZ Company is considering investing in a project that requires an initial investment of \$100,000 for some machinery. There will be net inflows of \$20,000 for the first two years, \$10,000 in years three and four, and \$30,000 in year five.

## Calculation of ARR

It’s important to utilize multiple financial metrics including ARR and RRR to determine if an investment would be worthwhile based on your level of risk tolerance. Next, we’ll build a roll-forward schedule for the fixed asset, in which the beginning value is linked to the initial investment, and the depreciation expense is \$8 million each period. The Accounting Rate of Return (ARR) is the average net income earned on an investment (e.g. a fixed asset purchase), expressed as a percentage of its average book value.

• The incremental net income generated by the fixed asset – assuming the profits are adjusted for the coinciding depreciation – is as follows.
• The accounting rate of return is a simple calculation that does not require complex math and is helpful in determining a project’s annual percentage rate of return.
• The Accounting Rate of Return can be used to measure how well a project or investment does in terms of book profit.
• It is used in situations where companies are deciding on whether or not to invest in an asset (a project, an acquisition, etc.) based on the future net earnings expected compared to the capital cost.

Our team of reviewers are established professionals with decades of experience in areas of personal finance and hold many advanced degrees and certifications. For example, you invest 1,000 dollars for a big company and 20 days later you get 300 dollars as revenue. Therefore, this means that for every dollar invested, the investment will return a profit of about 54.76 cents. We follow strict ethical journalism practices, which includes presenting unbiased information and citing reliable, attributed resources. This team of experts helps Finance Strategists maintain the highest level of accuracy and professionalism possible.

## Accounting Rate of Return Calculation Example (ARR)

Businesses use ARR primarily to compare multiple projects to determine the expected rate of return of each project, or to help decide on an investment or an acquisition. Managers can decide whether to go ahead with an investment by comparing the accounting rate of return with the minimum rate of return the business requires to justify investments. In the above case, the purchase of the new machine would not be justified because the 10.9% accounting rate of return is less than the 15% minimum required return. The accounting rate of return is a simple calculation that does not require complex math and is helpful in determining a project’s annual percentage rate of return. Through this, it allows managers to easily compare ARR to the minimum required return.

• Accounting rates are used in tons of different locations, from analyzing investments to determining the profitability of different investments.
• Accounting rate of return can be used to screen individual projects, but it is not well-suited to comparing investment opportunities.
• If the ARR is equal to 5%, this means that the project is expected to earn five cents for every dollar invested per year.
• If the result is more than the minimum rate of return the business requires, that is an indication the investment may be worthwhile.
• By comparing the average accounting profits earned on a project to the average initial outlay, a company can determine if the yield on the potential investment is profitable enough to be worth spending capital on.
• Therefore, this means that for every dollar invested, the investment will return a profit of about 54.76 cents.

Then they subtract the increase in annual costs, including non-cash charges for depreciation. In capital budgeting, the accounting rate of return, otherwise known as the “simple rate of return”, is the average net income received on a project as a percentage of the average initial investment. The accounting rate of return is a capital budgeting metric that’s useful if you want to calculate an investment’s profitability quickly.

## What is ARR – Accounting Rate of Return?

Finance Strategists is a leading financial literacy non-profit organization priding itself on providing accurate and reliable financial information to millions of readers each year. The Accounting Rate of Return can be used to measure how well a project or investment does in terms of book profit. Some limitations include the Accounting Rate of Returns not taking into account dividends or other sources of finance. If the ARR is equal to 5%, this means that the project is expected to earn five cents for every dollar invested per year. We’ll now move on to a modeling exercise, which you can access by filling out the form below. Our goal is to deliver the most understandable and comprehensive explanations of financial topics using simple writing complemented by helpful graphics and animation videos.

For example, if the minimum required return of a project is 12% and ARR is 9%, a manager will know not to proceed with the project. Unlike other widely used return measures, such as net present value and internal rate of return, accounting rate of return does not consider the cash flow an investment will generate. This can be helpful because net income is what many investors and lenders consider when selecting an investment or considering a loan. However, cash flow is arguably a more important concern for the people actually running the business. So accounting rate of return is not necessarily the only or best way to evaluate a proposed investment. The time value of money is the main concept of the discounted cash flow model, which better determines the value of an investment as it seeks to determine the present value of future cash flows.

## Reviewed by Subject Matter Experts

The total profit from the fixed asset investment is \$35 million, which we’ll divide by five years to arrive at an average net income of \$7 million. By comparing the average accounting profits earned on a project to the average initial outlay, a company can determine if the yield on the potential investment is profitable enough to be worth spending capital on. Accounting rate of return is also sometimes called the simple rate of return or the average rate of return. Accounting rate of return can be used to screen individual projects, but it is not well-suited to comparing investment opportunities. Different investments may involve different time periods, which can change the overall value proposition.

## What Is the Accounting Rate of Return (ARR)?

At Finance Strategists, we partner with financial experts to ensure the accuracy of our financial content. Accounting Rate of Return is calculated by taking the beginning book value and ending book value and dividing it by the beginning book value. The Accounting Rate of Return is also sometimes referred to as the “Internal Rate of Return” (IRR).

## Calculating Accounting Rate of Return

The average book value is the sum of the beginning and ending fixed asset book value (i.e. the salvage value) divided by two. The articles and research support materials available on this site are educational and are not intended to be investment or tax advice. All such information is provided solely for convenience purposes only and all users thereof should be guided accordingly. The Accounting Rate of Return is the overall return on investment for an asset over a certain time period.

It is the average annual net income the investment will produce, divided by its average capital cost. If the result is more than the minimum rate of return the business requires, that is an indication the investment may be worthwhile. If the accounting rate of return is below the benchmark, the investment won’t be considered. The main difference between ARR and IRR is that IRR is a discounted cash flow formula while ARR is a non-discounted cash flow formula. A non-discounted cash flow formula does not take into consideration the present value of future cash flows that will be generated by an asset or project.