EBITDA – Earnings before interest taxes depreciation and amortisation
– is a measure of a company’s overall financial performance and is used as an alternative to simple earnings or net income in some circumstances. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation, however, can be misleading because it strips out the cost of capital investments like property, plant, and equipment.
This metric also excludes expenses associated with debt by adding back interest expense and taxes to earnings. Nonetheless, it is a more precise measure of corporate performance since it is able to show earnings before the influence of accounting and financial deductions.
Simply put, Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation is a measure of profitability. While there is no legal requirement for companies to disclose their EBITDA (here also written as EBIT-DA), according to the U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (US GAAP) or International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), it can be worked out and reported using information found in a company’s financial statements.
The earnings, tax, and interest figures are found on the income statement, while the depreciation and amortisation figures are normally found in the notes to operating profit or on the cash flow statement. The usual shortcut to calculate EBITDA is to start with operating profit, also called earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) and then add back depreciation and amortisation.