MARGIN Definition

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MARGIN is a. in accounting see GROSS MARGIN; or, b. in securities, it is the process whereby investors are allowed to buy securities on credit. By buying on margin, the investor significantly increases the leverage, or risk/return potential, of the investment. For example, a purchase of $100 worth of stock with cash of $50 means a four to one increase in value if the stock doubles (versus a two to one increase if the purchase is all cash). On the other hand, if the stock declines, the investor would be forced either to put up more cash or sell the stock at a loss to meet margin requirements established by the Federal Reserve Bank. The margin rules currently stipulate that an investor must maintain 50% of the total market value of the securities in the account in cash. 

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EARNINGS PER SHARE (EPS) is either: a. Basic EPS is earnings before extraordinary gains and losses, less preferred-share dividends, divided by all common shares outstanding at the most recent fiscal year end. Net income, or earnings, refers to the companys after-tax profits before extraordinary gains or extraordinary losses for the most recent annual period; or, b. Diluted EPS is where the number of shares used in the calculation is increased to account for outstanding dilution such as options, warrants, in-the-money convertibles, etc. EPS, within a firm that has a sustainable competitive advantage, Should show a minimum of 5-years of their EPS trending strongly upward with consistency and without being erratic.

BONDING is generally used by service companies as a guarantee to their clients that they have the necessary ability and financial tracking to meet their obligations. Bonds are also used to guarantee payment of duty for U.S. Customs entry.

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