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# What does taxable interest mean

## What it is:

An equivalent taxable interest rate (also called equivalent taxable yield ) is the return that is required on a taxable investment to make it equal to the return on a tax-exempt investment. The equivalent taxable interest rate is commonly used when evaluating municipal bond returns.

## How it works/Example:

The formula for equivalent taxable interest rate is:

R(te) = R(tf) / (1 - t)

Where:

R(te) = equivalent taxable interest rate for the investor

R(tf) = return on tax-free investment (usually a municipal bond )

For example, let's assume Investor A, who is in a 28% tax bracket. is considering whether to invest in a municipal bond with a 10% coupon rate. Using the formula above, we can calculate that, for

this investor, the municipal bond's equivalent taxable interest rate is:

R(te) = 0.10 / (1 - 0.28)

R(te) = 0.1389 = 13.89%

Therefore, a taxable bond would have to return a yield greater than +13.89% to become more profitable to this investor than the municipal bond.

The tax-free advantage of municipal bonds can make a tremendous difference in an investor's yield, especially if the investor is in a high tax bracket. For example, let's assume another investor, Investor B, only has a marginal tax rate of 20% and is considering whether to invest in that same 10% municipal bond. Using the formula above, we can calculate that Investor B's equivalent taxable interest rate for the same bond is:

R(te) = 0.10 / (1 - 0.20)