Sometimes entities purchase or issue debt instruments with a predetermined rate of interest that increases or decreases progressively (‘stepped interest’) over the term of the debt instrument. If a debt instrument with stepped interest is issued at CU1,250 and has a maturity amount of CU1,250, would the gross carrying amount equal CU1,250 in each reporting period over the term of the debt instrument?
No. Although there is no difference between the initial amount and maturity amount, an entity uses the effective interest method to allocate interest payments over the term of the debt instrument to achieve a constant rate on the carrying amount.
The following example illustrates how the gross carrying amount is calculated using the effective interest method for an instrument with a predetermined rate of interest that increases or decreases over the term of the debt instrument (‘stepped interest’).
On 1 January 20X0, Entity A issues a debt instrument for a price of CU1,250. The contractual par amount is CU1,250 and the debt instrument is repayable on 31 December 20X4. The rate of interest is specified in the debt agreement as a percentage of the contractual par amount as follows: 6.0 per cent in 20X0 (CU75), 8.0 per cent in 20X1 (CU100), 10.0 per cent in 20X2 (CU125), 12.0 per cent in 20X3 (CU150), and 16.4 per cent in 20X4 (CU205). In this case, the interest rate that exactly discounts the stream of future cash payments through maturity is 10 per cent. Therefore, cash interest payments are reallocated over the term of the debt instrument for the purposes of determining the gross carrying amount in each period. In each period, the gross carrying amount at the beginning of the period is multiplied by the effective interest rate of 10 per cent and added to the gross carrying amount. Any cash payments in the period are deducted from the resulting number. Accordingly, the gross carrying amount in each period is as follows: