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The NPV is zero at 15 percent, so 15 percent is the IRR. If we require an 18 percent return, then we should not take the investment. The reason is that the NPV is negative at 18 percent (verify that it is -$24.47). The IRR rule tells us the same thing in this case. We shouldn't take this investment because its 15 percent return is below our required 18 percent return.

At this point, you may be wondering if the IRR and NPV rules always lead to identical decisions. The answer is yes, as long as two very important conditions are met. First, the project's cash flows must be conventional, meaning that the first cash flow (the

Ross et al.: Fundamentals of Corporate Finance, Sixth Edition, Alternate Edition

IV. Capital Budgeting

9. Net Present Value and Other Investment Criteria

© The McGraw-Hill Companies, 2002

CHAPTER 9 Net Present Value and Other Investment Criteria initial investment) is negative and all the rest are positive. Second, the project must be independent, meaning that the decision to accept or reject this project does not affect the decision to accept or reject any other. The first of these conditions is typically met, but the second often is not. In any case, when one or both of these conditions are not met, problems can arise. We discuss some of these next.

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