Merton Model

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Merton Model'

A model, named after the financial scholar Robert C. Merton, that was developed in the 1970s and is used today to evaluate the credit risk of a corporation's debt. Brokerage firm analysts and some investors employ the model in order to determine a company's ability to service its debt, meet its financial obligations and to gauge the overall possibility of credit default.

Also referred to as "Asset Value Model."

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Merton Model'

Fischer Black and Myron Scholes utilized Merton's work to build out what has since become known as the Black-Scholes pricing model.

Securities analysts and loan officers attempting to determine a company's credit fault risk will utilize the Merton Model as a means of analysis. The model allows the analysts to better value the company, as well as determine its ability to remain solvent through the analysis of reported debt amounts and maturity dates.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Credit Rating

    An assessment of the credit worthiness of a borrower in general ...
  2. Black Scholes Model

    A model of price variation over time of financial instruments ...
  3. Default Risk

    The event in which companies or individuals will be unable to ...
  4. Black's Model

    A variation of the popular Black-Scholes options pricing model ...
  5. Credit Risk

    The risk of loss of principal or loss of a financial reward stemming ...
  6. Default Model

    A type of model used by financial institutions to determine the ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. How can I create a yield curve in Excel?

    You can create a yield curve in Microsoft Excel if you are given the time to maturities of bonds and their respective yields ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What are the different formations of yield curves?

    There are three main different formations of yield curves: normal, inverted and flat yield curves. The yield curve describes ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Why would a company issue a rights offering?

    Companies most commonly issue a rights offering to raise additional capital. A company may need extra capital to meet its ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What is the difference between share purchase rights and options?

    There is a big difference between share purchase rights and options. With share purchase rights, the holder may or may not ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What is the difference between an option-adjusted spread and a Z-spread in reference ...

    Unlike the Z-spread calculation, the option-adjusted spread takes into account how the embedded option in a bond can change ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. In what ways can a sinking fund affect bond returns?

    The effective yield of a bond sinking fund to an investor should not be considered similar to a bond nonsinking fund. Both ... Read Full Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Bonds & Fixed Income

    Junk Bonds: Everything You Need To Know

    Don't be fooled by the name - junk bonds may be for you if you know how to analyze them.
  2. Bonds & Fixed Income

    Corporate Bonds: An Introduction To Credit Risk

    Corporate bonds offer higher yields, but it's important to evaluate the extra risk involved before you buy.
  3. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Evaluating Bond Funds: Keeping It Simple

    Discover some of the key factors for determining a fund's risk-return profile.
  4. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Digging Deeper: The Mutual Fund Prospectus

    The legal jargon of this document can be daunting. Find out how to get to the important stuff.
  5. Retirement

    Risk And Diversification

    Safeguarding your portfolio involves a few simple steps.
  6. Fundamental Analysis

    Calculating Future Value

    Future value is the value of an asset or cash at a specified date in the future that is equivalent in value to a specified sum today.
  7. Economics

    What is Deadweight Loss?

    Mainly used in economics, deadweight loss can be applied to any deficiency caused by an inefficient allocation of resources.
  8. Economics

    How to Do a Cost-Benefit Analysis

    The benefits of a given situation or business-related action are summed and then the costs associated with taking that action are subtracted.
  9. Professionals

    Why You Should Avoid Fixating on Bond Duration

    Financial advisors and their clients should then focus on a bond fund’s portfolio rather than relying on any single metric like duration.
  10. Investing

    The Case For Stocks Today

    Last week, U.S. equities advanced with the S&P 500 Index notching new records. Investors are now getting nervous with rate and currency volatility spiking.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Moving Average - MA

    A widely used indicator in technical analysis that helps smooth out price action by filtering out the “noise” from random ...
  2. Yield Curve

    A line that plots the interest rates, at a set point in time, of bonds having equal credit quality, but differing maturity ...
  3. Productivity

    An economic measure of output per unit of input. Inputs include labor and capital, while output is typically measured in ...
  4. Variance

    The spread between numbers in a data set, measuring Variance is calculated by taking the differences between each number ...
  5. Terminal Value - TV

    The value of a bond at maturity, or of an asset at a specified, future valuation date, taking into account factors such as ...
  6. Rule Of 70

    A way to estimate the number of years it takes for a certain variable to double. The rule of 70 states that in order to estimate ...
Trading Center