By Charles R. Geisst (auth.)

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In subsequent chapters, the general effects of rising interest rates upon specific financial markets will be discussed. It is noteworthy, however, that some of the traditional generalisations about the effect of higher rates, as well as other economic phenomena, will change in the future due to the inflationary spiral experienced in 1979-80. Prior to the mid-1970s, general opinion held that increases in the money supply (normally M1) suggested an upsurge in share prices as more money became available for potential stock investment.

In the United States, this calculation is simple since profit after tax is considered the gross amount available for distribution. In Britain, however, the corporate tax rate is not standardised so pe ratios between the two stock markets may not necessarily be comparable. See, for example, J. A. Kay and M. A. King, The British Tax System (Oxford University Press, 1978), especially Chapter 4. 2 Money Markets The second type of capital available to companies - debt - is divided into many classifications.

If company 3's earnings were to decline, jeopardising the dividend, or it were to incur extraordinary losses then the investor is actually assuming an additional risk for which the lower share price may not compensate. When using the term arbitrage in this book we will use it in its strict sense; normally it will be used to imply either one of the techniques described above. The simple criterion used here will be that any security substituted for another must be a comparable economic substitute; that is, it must be in the same risk category and must also return a similar payment in dividend (or interest) to the investor.

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