Category Archives: Money Glossary

You have to speak the lingo

Free Cash Flow – FCF

A measure of financial performance calculated as operating cash flow minus capital expenditures. Free cash flow (FCF) represents the cash that a company is able to generate after laying out the money required to maintain or expand its asset base. Free cash flow is important because it allows a company to pursue opportunities that enhance shareholder value.

Long Run

A period of time in which all factors of production and costs are variable. In the long run, firms are able to adjust all costs, whereas in the short run firms are only able to influence prices through adjustments made to production levels. Additionally, whereas firms may be a monopoly in the short-term they may expect competition in the long-term.

Quasi Contract

A legal agreement created by the courts between two parties who did not have a previous obligation to each other. A normal contract requires two parties to consent to mutually agreeable terms. Under a quasi contract, neither party is originally intended to create an agreement.

Wage-Price Spiral

A macroeconomic theory to explain the cause-and-effect relationship between rising wages and rising prices, or inflation. The wage-price sprial suggests that rising wages increase disposable income, thus raising the demand for goods and causing prices to rise.

Value At Risk – VaR

A statistical technique used to measure and quantify the level of financial risk within a firm or investment portfolio over a specific time frame. Value at risk is used by risk managers in order to measure and control the level of risk which the firm undertakes.

Mark To Market – MTM

1. A measure of the fair value of accounts that can change over time, such as assets and liabilities. Mark to market aims to provide a realistic appraisal of an institution's or company's current financial situation. 2. The accounting act of recording the price or value of a security, portfolio or account to reflect its current market value rather than its book value.

Simple Moving Average – SMA

A simple, or arithmetic, moving average that is calculated by adding the closing price of the security for a number of time periods and then dividing this total by the number of time periods. Short-term averages respond quickly to changes in the price of the underlying, while long-term averages are slow to react.

Alternative Investment

An investment that is not one of the three traditional asset types (stocks, bonds and cash). Most alternative investment assets are held by institutional investors or accredited, high-net-worth individuals because of their complex nature, limited regulations and relative lack of liquidity.