What is Short Term Investment on Balance Sheet?
Short Term investments, also known as marketable securities, are those financial instruments (debt or equity investments) which can be easily converted into cash in the next three to twelve months and are classified as Current Assets on the Balance Sheet. Most companies opt for such investments on balance sheet and park excess cash in such investments due to liquidity and solvency reasons.
It has two main requirements, first, they should be readily convertible into cash and the second investor must be willing to sell it within one year.
Top 5 Short Term Investments Options
Cash is zero interest earning instrument. We will discuss here short term investments options which have better returns with almost no risk.
The following are Top Short Term Investment Options:
#1 – Certificates of Deposit (CDs)
Certificate of deposits is available from three months to seven years. Longer the tenure longer is the interest rate. Shorter the duration less is the interest rate. Certificate of deposits can be availed from the bank. A certificate of deposit is one of the safest investments or savings.
#2 – Short Term Mutual Funds
The mutual fund is managed by trustee mutual funds and one can hold for short term or long term. For the short term, the fund needs to be selected right. Returns on the mutual funds depend upon the fund manager’s performance a the investor does not have any control over it. The selected fund must be an open-ended fund the o investor can sell his units in the open market whenever he wishes so. If the fund is close-ended, then the end date and the opening date is decided by the mutual fund company. To keep things simple, mutual funds invest investor’s money on his behalf into the debt or equity market.
#3 – Liquid Funds
These are the mutual fund houses investing in too short term Government securities and certificates of deposits and having a short maturity period of 4 to 91 days. In simple language, liquid funds can only invest in securities which has maturity up to 91 days. It is easy to enter and exit from such liquid funds. They are having high liquidity value and they are highly secure as well as tenure is for a very short duration. The return on liquid funds ranges from 4 % to 10 % that means they offer moderate returns depending upon the investment portfolio.
This is one of the widely used short term investment options and an alternative to parking money to build emergency funds. However, some risks are always attached while investing in any type of mutual fund. By analyzing past trends, one can say liquid funds generate higher returns than fixed deposits. Also saving account returns are less than the liquid funds. Investing in liquid funds gives you fair chances of earning higher returns as compared to a normal saving account or fixed deposits.
#4 -Treasuries / Government Short Term Bonds
For short term needs of the government, government issues treasuries. One can opt for that for short term investment. These are backed by government securities and are safe to invest. It needs slightly higher skillsets as buying and selling securities to need a basic understanding of the investments. Treasuries can be issued by central Government, State Government or local municipal body.
#5 – Commercial Papers
Like the Government, privately held companies also need money for the short term. Private companies also issue papers for the short term. Interest rates on commercial papers are slightly higher than Government treasuries. Commercial papers are easy to invest and practically it is one of the rarest occasions where the company has defaulted in 91 days’ periods so it becomes a less risky investment.
Short Term investments always give a better return than cash, which earns a zero % interest rate. Despite its advantages, short term investments still run the risk of inflation, default and lower returns.
This has been a guide to what is Short Term Investments on Balance Sheet. Here we have discussed the top 5 short term investment options including Certificate of Deposits, Mutual Funds, Commercial Paper, Treasury Bonds, etc. You may learn more about our articles below on accounting –