from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Financing (also financial economics ; English financing ) is in the financial economy the supply of an economic subject with capital so that it can pursue its goals .


Economic subjects are private households ( private financial planning ), companies ( corporate financing ) or the state ( public finances ). Because of the diversity of economic subjects, the definition of financing must be general, as financing in companies or in states is different. What they all have in common is that their capital requirements to meet their various goals must be covered by financing. In economics, the financing of companies is usually examined, whereby these findings can be transferred analogously to the other economic subjects.

In companies, financing forms an operational function , whereby a distinction must be made between the capital economy concept of financing (provision of capital) and the monetary concept of financing ( money to secure liquidity ). In both cases, at least liability side of the balance sheet affected, which serves the on the asset side, existing or to be purchased assets in the context of business objectives to finance. According to Günter Wöhe , the raising of capital on the liabilities side is the narrow concept of financing, while the investments made on the assets side represent the broad concept of financing. Financing comprises all processes for the provision and repayment of the financial resources required for production and investments. This includes all measures from the procurement ( refinancing ) to the repayment ( repayment ) of financial resources as well as the associated design of the payment , information , co-determination , control and security relationships between companies and investors . Financial economics also includes the reverse view of these issues from the investor's point of view ( financial planning ).


The loan word financing comes from the Latin finantia for "payment, payment, due payment, termination" and appeared in the late Middle High German "finantien", which was first used in Cologne in 1341 in the old German distrust of any kind of modern use of capital as "money business in the bad sense or usury “Showed up. The Cologne city book wrote in the original text "Döt is the morning language of woichger and finantien". In the Middle Ages, “morning language” was understood to mean the morning meetings of guild matters. Around 1549 the “financier” was still considered usury or a cunning deceiver. In 1582, the statutes of the city of Cologne forbade trade through "usury / finance" under threat of punishment. The lexicographer George Henisch described in 1616 "Finantz" as latin "pecunia publica, summa rei quaestoriae" , or "public funds, the main thing the Quaestors ". From this also led French finances from the funds of a state, which is the German word Finance precipitated. The Middle Latin meaning came from ending a dispute in court in the form of a fine. Termination by payment is still the typical case with debt today .

According to Bruno Hildebrand, a distinction has been made between natural economy , money economy and credit economy in the development stage theory of economics since 1864 and the transition to the credit economy is recognized. Otto von Bismarck understood the term financing in his autobiography in 1898 as the word of the stock exchange : “The 'financing', as the stock exchange expresses itself, was given by the great fortunes of Bethmann-Hollweg and Count Fürstenberg-Stammheim ... by the skillful hands of Count Goltz and Albert von Pourtalès concerned ”.

In 1921, the older business administration understood capital and thus its provision as goods that “can be used for acquisition”. Eugen Schmalenbach dispensed with a definition in his work “Financing” in 1922, although one would be expected given the book title . In 1925, Wilhelm Kalveram introduced the “daily credit disposition of the company” into the concept of financing, and in 1929 understood financing to include “all capital and credit operations necessary for the purpose of building up and downsizing companies and the adjustment of capital according to the amount and specific composition the purposes of the company ”. For Wilhelm Rieger , the entrepreneur “has to master monetary and financial problems” through financing. In 1929, Curt Eisfeld narrowed the term to long-term capital procurement. In 1949 Liesel Beckmann understood this to mean “all capital dispositions that occur in the life of a business administration”. In 1956, Konrad Mellerowicz saw financing as “every order of corporate capital structure”. In 1969, Erich Gutenberg devoted an entire book to his “Fundamentals of Business Administration” to the topic of finance and understands by this the monetary safeguarding of the input-output relationships of a company by maintaining the “financial equilibrium”. Erwin Grochla introduced the decision- oriented concept of financing in 1976, which included "the sum of activities aimed at providing the company with the appropriate amount of money and other assets that are required to achieve the company's goals".

Structure of the financing

The forms of financing can be broken down according to the source of funds (external financing or internal financing) and at the same time according to the legal status of the capital provider (equity capital provider or debt capital provider), so that a two-by-two matrix results:

Structure of the financing

An intermediate position between internal and external financing takes the following form:

  • Internally funded reallocation finance: Depreciation finance and asset reallocation finance

Internal financing

Internal financing is financing through reinvestment (withholding) of past profits. Two conditions must be met for this:

  • The company receives liquid funds from the internal sales and performance process
  • The inflow of funds is offset by little or no cash-effective expenses.

A measure of the internal financing potential is the cash flow figure, which simplifies the payment surplus.


There are two possible funding sub-items:

  • Open self-financing: Retained earnings : Creation of retained earnings
  • Concealed self-financing (silent self-financing): Dissolution of hidden reserves

With open self-financing , the reported profits are either fully or partially retained. If they are withheld in full, the shareholders forego their profit, whereas corporations are only allowed to withhold part. If the profit is distributed and a capital increase by the amount of the profit is carried out at the same time, depending on the tax system, taxes can be saved. This fact is also known as the "pour-out-get-back" method.

The hidden or silent self-financing is possible in two ways: first, by the application of mandatory profit determination rules (such as depreciation , provisions ), and on the other by the use of margins offered by the underlying accounting system. Hidden reserves result from the principle of prudence and the application of valuation and accounting options:

Self-financing is considered advantageous in some situations, as it saves taxes, increases a company's resilience to crises and a riskier corporate strategy can be pushed through the lack of interest payments. At the same time, however, capital cannot be used optimally and in comparison to the market alternatives it could be comparatively “more expensive” (possible costs due to a lack of profits in financial investments).

The self-financing of newly founded companies ( startups ) is also called bootstrapping .

Reserve financing

Provision financing is external financing through internal financing. It is also referred to as internal external financing.

Companies set up provisions for uncertain liabilities and impending losses from pending transactions. These provisions have a financing effect if there is a time gap between the expense process (time of creation) and the disbursement process (occurrence of the reason for payment). During this time, the company can use the funds from the provision for financing purposes.

Short-term provisions (e.g. for back tax payments or vacation pay) have hardly any financing effect. Pension provisions and guarantee provisions are important financing instruments because they are long-term.

The financing effect of pension provisions can be divided into three phases:

  1. Expansion phase : the company makes a profit and thus builds up pension provisions. Pension payments are not yet due, or to a lesser extent than the provision. This results in an increasing financing effect.
  2. Balanced phase : the pension payments for departing workers roughly correspond to the contributions for salaried workers. The amount of the provision corresponds to the amount of the pension payments. There is a constant financing effect.
  3. Contraction phase : If the amount of the pension payments exceeds the amount of the allocations, there is a negative financing effect. This can e.g. B. occur when staff is reduced.

Depreciation Finance

Depreciation financing is a form of internal financing that cannot be classified as either self-financing or external financing. Rather, it is a reallocation of financing.

The financing effect of depreciation is that the company factored in the depreciation of fixed assets in its selling prices. If the company makes corresponding payments through the sale , then the calculated depreciation rates flow back to the company. However, because the fixed assets do not have to be replaced until the end of their useful life, the company can temporarily use the depreciation rates that have flowed back for other investments.

If the returned funds are not needed to purchase replacements, this is referred to as the capital release effect. If the free funds are immediately reinvested in capital goods of the same type and the same acquisition or production costs, this results in the capacity expansion effect .

Financing from asset reallocation

Financing from the reallocation of assets - like depreciation financing - is neither to be classified as self-financing nor as external financing. Rather, it is - as the name suggests - a reallocation of financing.

With this form of financing, tangible and / or intangible assets are converted into liquid form. Overall, the company's assets do not change.

Important forms of financing from asset shifting are:

  • Sale of fixed assets that are no longer required and
  • Reduction of working capital (e.g. reduction of stocks).

External financing

External financing refers to financing processes in which the company receives funds from outside, i. H. are not out of the performance process of the company come from. The entrepreneur, the owner or the shareholders have the option of adding equity to the company . For this, deposits are made, whereby one speaks of self-financing or equity financing . However, the company can also finance itself through loans (outside capital), which is referred to as external financing.


Self-financing refers to processes in which additional equity is made available to the company, ie in which the shareholders (owners) contribute funds to the company. It is also known as “Equity and Deposit Funding”. The addition of equity capital can be done by increasing the deposits or by adding new shareholders who bring new contributions. Self-financing is also part of self-financing. Since the capital here comes from “inside”, that is, from the corporate process, self-financing is part of internal financing. Self-financing is a sub-item of both external and internal financing .

Distinction is made between emissive ( Aktiengesellschaft , KGaA ) and non-emissive companies ( general partnership , limited liability company , partnership , cooperative distinction). The latter do not have the opportunity to issue their securities ( shares ) on the stock exchange and thus raise large amounts of equity . For the investor in particular, the disadvantage here is the low fungibility of the shares, so that they have to be committed for a longer period of time.

Instead, the shareholders must either inject new capital (only possible to a limited extent due to the limited assets of the shareholders) or take on a new shareholder. However, if a new shareholder is accepted, the previous voting rights will change. Depending on the form of liability, the legislature has made it differently easy for companies to obtain new capital. This ranges from the simple case of a new limited partner to the inclusion of a new partner in the GmbH.

Debt financing

As leverage all operations are designated by the Company will be provided outside capital. Borrowing generally relates to financing through loans, which means that capital flows into the company from outside through lenders . In the case of external financing, a distinction is made between full and partial financing, depending on how high the proportion of external financing in the total financing amount is. Due to the lack of a say and participation in profit / loss for the lender, interest is paid in return . This usually includes the risk-free market interest rate plus a corresponding risk premium, which is based on the scope of the collateral and the estimated risk. In addition, the borrower must repay the loan even in the event of a loss. If this is not possible for him, the security, which the lender usually requested when the contract was signed, is handed over to the lender.

Loans are usually differentiated according to their term:

Full or partial financing

Depending on the proportion of external financing in the total financing, one speaks of full or partial financing. With full financing , the borrower does not use equity and thus takes a higher financing risk , while with partial financing he participates with an equity portion.

Pre- or bridging financing

Depending on whether or final financing is already ensured not a distinction between the interim financing and pre-financing .

Special forms: leasing, factoring, mezzanine capital, asset-backed securities

Factoring is basically a form of outsourcing . The receivables of a company or a part of it are sold to the factoring company and in return you receive the immediate payment of the purchase price. Usually 90% are advanced . The remaining 10% is paid out when the debtor pays the invoice or becomes insolvent. Factoring is a “true sale”, which means that the factoring company becomes the owner of the receivable and thus also has the risk of default.

Be differentiated

  • the "in-house process" (accounts receivable management is continued by the seller of the receivables) and
  • the "full-service process" ( receivables management is taken over by the factor).

There is still that

  • "Silent procedure" (the sale of receivables is not disclosed to the debtors; always only in connection with the in-house procedure and only with good credit ratings) and that
  • "Open procedure" (the sale of receivables is displayed to the customer).

A special case is the maturity factoring, which secures the receivables 100 percent against defaults, but has no financing function.

Advantages of factoring:

  • Preservation of liquidity
  • no credit risk
  • Cost savings on staff and service level
  • Time savings
  • Professionalization of accounts receivable management (for smaller companies)
  • Improvement of the company rating, especially through a reduction in the balance sheet and the associated higher equity ratio
  • Broadening the financing base and, if necessary, greater independence from the house bank (s).


  • high costs due to the factoring company, which shifts part of the risk to the factoring customer via the price.

The refinancing with asset-backed securities similar to the sale of receivables by factoring . Here, the receivables (assets) (not to a factor, but to a specially established purchasing company SPV , English special purpose vehicle SPV, abbreviated) sold these securitized and as asset-backed security ( English asset-backed security , ABS) or collateralised money market paper ( English asset-backed commercial paper , ABCP) placed on the capital market. These papers are bought by institutional investors such as banks , insurance companies or funds . In order to reduce the risk of default for investors , the securities issued are extensively hedged ( credit enhancement , essentially by backing them with tranches that bear the initial risk of loss - subordination - or by taking out credit insurance for the underlying receivables). In addition, the risk of default or loss of the paper is assessed by rating agencies (mainly Standard & Poor’s , Moody’s or Fitch Ratings ). Due to the high minimum volume, ABS are particularly suitable for large companies, while refinancing through ABCP (due to the bundling of receivables from several sellers of receivables) is also open to medium-sized companies.

Financing from individual economic entities

Corporate finance

Corporate finance is based on a company's financial planning . It has to be decided whether and when equity and debt capital should be raised, in which form equity capital is to be provided, which maturities should be preferred for debt capital, whether debt capital should be requested as a blank credit or secured with loan collateral. The prolongation and interest rate adjustment of bank loans or the decision for just-in-time production in the context of materials management are also a measure of corporate financing.

Public finance

Public finance means the financing of the state budget or other public budgets through state revenue . The primary goal of a state budget is the material budget balance , in which state expenditure must be covered by ordinary state revenue ( tax revenue ). Any budget deficits are to be financed by loans, whereby a formal budget balance is always guaranteed. In Germany, Art. 105 to Art. 108 GG stipulate the tax state principle for state financing , so that the state has to finance itself primarily through taxes . In addition, there are also non-tax sources of income such as fees ( Art. 74 No. 22 GG), contributions ( Art. 74 No. 18 GG), social security contributions ( Art. 74 No. 12 GG) or coins and banknotes ( Art. 73 No. . 4 GG) and - subsidiary - the income from loans ( Art. 115 GG) into account. In the case of the latter, a debt brake must be observed (Article 115, Paragraph 2 of the Basic Law), according to which the income from loans may not exceed 0.35% of the nominal gross domestic product . The overall coverage principle means that all government revenues have to cover all existing government expenditures. Since budget deficits can only be covered by loans ( government bonds ), permanent deficits increase national debt , which increases financial risks . The higher the government quota , the more influence government finances exert on an economy and vice versa.

Financing of private households

Private households have earned income , capital income or transfer income within the framework of self-financing . This also includes disposals of savings ( saving in the broadest sense) or proceeds from the sale of assets . These sources of finance are available - isolated or combined - for larger purchases made by a household ( household items , automobiles , residential property ). If the means of self-financing are insufficient, the budget must decide whether to take out loans. In this case at the latest, the budget must draw up a financing plan, which is an important loan document for banks .

Special finance

Among the special financing include bank regulatory requirements , the project finance , asset finance , commodities finance , financing of rental properties and high volatility commercial real estate loans . According to the Bundesbank, project financing is a type of financing in which the lender mainly regards the income that can be generated from the individual project both as a source for the repayment of the loan claim and as collateral for the claim. Property financing refers to a method of financing property (e.g. ships , planes , satellites , railcars, and vehicle fleets ) where the repayment of the loan claim is dependent on the cash flows from the property financed and pledged or assigned to the lender . Commodity trade financing is structured short-term loans to finance inventories , inventories or loans from exchange-traded raw materials ( commodities ; e.g. crude oil , metals or grain ) that are repaid from the sales proceeds of the financed trade goods and whose borrower is otherwise unable to To settle the claim. The financing of income-generating commercial real estate refers to a method of financing real estate (e.g. office buildings , shops , multi-family houses , industrial and storage areas and hotels ) in which the repayment and the sale proceeds in the event of bad debts are primarily based on the income generated from the property. The main source of these payments is rental and leasing income or the sale of the property. The borrower can - but does not have to - be a special purpose vehicle , a property developer , a rental company, or a company that also generates income from sources other than real estate. Highly volatile commercial real estate loans are used to finance commercial real estate, which has a higher volatility of the loss rate (a higher positive correlation of assets ) compared to other types of special financing . The Capital Adequacy Ordinance (English abbreviation CRR) requires special financing within the exposure class "Risk positions in companies" (Art. 147 (8) CRR). If credit institutions cannot estimate the probability of default on this special financing, these loans are to be assigned the risk weights specified in Art. 153 (5) CRR .

Funding rules

Depending on the position in the balance sheet of the influencing factors used in the invoices, the financing rules are divided into horizontal and vertical :

Vertical funding rule

  • One-to-one rule
  • Two-to-one rule
  • Three-to-one rule

Horizontal funding rule

  • Golden banking rule (asset coverage I)
  • Golden accounting rule (asset coverage II)

Balance sheet analysis

In contrast to financial planning (view of the company), the view of the equity provider or the creditors / lenders is assumed when analyzing financial stocks or securities . On the basis of the balance sheet, financial indicators can be determined in order to estimate the default risk of debt financing from the perspective of the creditor or to obtain information on the economic situation of the company from the perspective of the equity provider. There are essentially four key figures for this, which are systematically differentiated using two approaches:

Traditional approaches

Modern approaches

  • individual portfolio theory
  • Pricing of risky securities in financial markets - for example capital goods price model (CAPM)
Debt capital ratio also known as degree of tension

A high debt capital ratio or a low equity ratio often mean an increased risk, since in the event of bankruptcy the loans that are not or not fully covered by collateral may fail in part. The level of indebtedness characterizes the ratio of debt to equity and thus evaluates the same as the two financing ratios.

System-related weaknesses of the balance sheet analysis are the lack of information about market position, potential and quality of the management, since the balance sheet as a key date overview provides little information about the future position of the company and hardly anything about the previous successes or problems of company management in the market.

Financial planning

The main task of financial planning is to maintain liquidity under the prerequisite of maximizing profitability, i.e. minimizing the cost of capital. As a result, there must be a dynamic balance between all future incoming and outgoing payments. Insolvency also threatens in cases when the equilibrium is disturbed in an infinitely small payment period, if it cannot be remedied by immediate measures (additional liquid funds).

There are four requirements for financial planning.

  1. Relation to the future
  2. Gross principle , which prohibits the balancing of deposits and withdrawals in order to avoid loss of information
  3. Completeness, which requires that all deposits and withdrawals are taken into account
  4. Deadline accuracy, which requires a period-specific recording.

Possible liquidity states:

  • Excess liquidity: imputed loss due to a lack of interest income
  • Under-liquidity: inability to pay

In order to reduce excess liquidity, investments can be made, debts can be repaid or distributions made to equity providers. Insufficient liquidity can be absorbed through additional external sources of capital (loans, capital increases), in-house through the cancellation of expenses and better enforcement of payment terms .

The financial planning can be divided into two categories according to the term:

  1. Capital requirement planning and
  2. Liquidity planning.

Capital requirement planning

The capital requirement planning extends over a forecast period of several years. The plan is for years and the balance sheet is used as the unit of calculation .

Liquidity planning

This is based on cash flows and can be further subdivided.

  1. In liquidity planning, the liquidity is planned for a week to a maximum of one month based on the payment flows.
  2. The financial planning in the narrow sense is planning the disposal options over finances up to one year on a weekly or monthly basis.

Finance theories

Financing theories deal with the complex interdependencies of financing processes and try to use them to develop explanatory models for optimal financing. Your knowledge objects are the procurement of capital and investment as well as the planning , organization and control of both functions. The classical theory of finance examines financial decisions , the focus of neoclassical finance theories are financing and investment decisions ( investment theory ), taking account of financing risk and return . The modern finance theories include the neoclassical capital market theory and the neo-institutionalist finance theory, which is referred to as institutional economics .

Economic Effects of Financing Decisions

If all economic subjects who require capital are compared with the economic subjects who provide capital, it is of economic interest that the transfer of capital from the providers of capital to those interested in capital goes hand in hand with the least possible frictional losses, so that the scarce resource "capital" is allocated where it needs to be greatest macroeconomic benefit. By minimizing transaction costs , for example through more efficient financing options on stock exchanges (direct financing) or with banks ( economies of scale for financial intermediaries ), a welfare gain can be achieved.

Alternative financing

With the tightening of lending policies, new forms of were in the 2000s and 2010s alternative financing developed as venture capital , business angels or crowdfunding .

See also


  • Thomas Copeland, Fred Weston: Finance Theory and Corporate Policy - Concepts of Capital Market Oriented Corporate Finance. 4th edition. Pearson Studies, 2007
  • J. Drukarczyk: Financing. 10th edition. Stuttgart, 2008
  • Hans Hirth: Fundamentals of financing and investment. 2nd Edition. Munich, 2008
  • Hermann Lauer: Conditions Management. Design and enforce payment terms optimally. Düsseldorf, 1998, ISBN 3-87881-124-1 .
  • K. Olfert: Financing. 15th edition. Herne, 2011
  • L. Perridon, M. Steiner: Finance of the enterprise. 15th edition. Munich / Vienna, 2009
  • H. Wirtz: Financing - Basics and Exercises. Münster, 2009, ISBN 978-3-86582-826-2 .
  • G. Wöhe, J. Bilstein: Principles of corporate financing. 10th edition. Munich, 2009
  • Roger Zantow: Financing - The basics of modern financial management. Pearson Studies, Munich, 2004

Web links

Wiktionary: finance  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations
Wiktionary: Financing  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Günter Wöhe / Jürgen Bilstein / Dietmar Ernst / Joachim Häcker, Basic Features of Corporate Financing , 2013, p. 2.
  2. ^ Friedrich Kluge, Etymological Dictionary of the German Language , 1883, p. 198.
  3. Hans Schulz / Otto Basler, German Foreign Dictionary , 2004, p. 891 f.
  4. The Statuta and Concordata of the Holy Freyen Reich instead of Cölln by the mayor and council , 1582, p. 106.
  5. Georg Henisch, Teütsche Sprach und Weissheit , 1616, Col. 1095 f.
  6. Quaestors were entrusted with the administration of the state treasury and the collection of taxes and rents in the Roman Empire
  7. ^ Hermann Paul, German Dictionary - History of Meaning and Structure of Our Vocabulary , 2002, p. 332.
  8. Bruno Hildebrand, Natural-, Geld- und Kreditwirtschaft , 1864, p. 355.
  9. Otto von Bismarck, Thoughts and Memories , Volume 1, 1898, p. 113.
  10. Ernst Pape, plan of double bookkeeping , 1921, p. 9.
  11. Eugen Schmalenbach, Financing , 1922.
  12. ^ Wilhelm Kalveram, The Financing of the Enterprise. In: Archive of the Progress in Business Research and Teaching, 1925, p. 154.
  13. ^ Wilhelm Kalveram, Die Handelshochschule , Volume 1, 1929, p. 1266.
  14. ^ Wilhelm Rieger, Introduction to Private Economics , 1927, p. 16.
  15. ^ Curt Eisfeld, Financing. In: Heinrich Nicklisch (Ed.), Concise Dictionary of Business Management, 1929, Sp. 934.
  16. Liesel Beckmann, The Business Financing , 1949, p. 28.
  17. Konrad Mellerowicz, General Business Administration , 1956, p. 59.
  18. Erich Gutenberg, Fundamentals of Business Administration , Volume 3: The Finances, 1969, pp. 272 ​​ff.
  19. Erwin Grochla, Financing. In: Hans E. Büschgen (Ed.), Handwortbuch der Finanzwirtschaft, 1976, Sp. 414.
  20. a b c d e f g Bettina Greimel-Fuhrmann, Gerhard Geissler, Gabriele Andre, Elisabeth Schleicher-Gálffy, Stefan Grbenic: Business Administration HAK III . Manz, Vienna 2016, p. 224 f .
  21. ^ Klaus Nathusius : Fundamentals of start-up financing. P. 36; Springer, 2001, ISBN 978-3-409-11869-9 .
  22. ^ A b c Joachim Prätsch, Uwe Schikorra, Eberhard Ludwig: Finance Management . Springer Gabler, Berlin / Heidelberg 2012, ISBN 978-3-642-25391-1 , p. 182-189 .
  23. Bernd Rudolph, Corporate Finance and Capital Markets , 2006, p. 3.
  24. BVerfGE 101, 141, 147
  25. BVerfGE 93, 319, 342
  26. Deutsche Bundesbank, The New Basel Equity Agreement , April 2003, p. 46 f.
  27. Deutsche Bundesbank, The New Basel Equity Agreement , April 2003, p. 47.
  28. Victor Tiberius (Ed.): Future Orientation in Business Administration , 2011, p. 141.