Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization is written in short to EBITDA in financial reports and statements. The term is pretty much self explanatory and refers to the net income after deducting the costs of interest, taxes, asset depreciation and amortization.

In securities analysis, EBITDA is a very commonly used metric to gauge the financial performance of a company or asset. In some jurisdictions, EBITDA can also be used to measure the performance of a REIT. However seasoned REIT investors, especially those in the United States, are more accustomed to measuring the performance of a REIT by looking at its Funds from Operations (FFO) or Adjusted Funds from Operations (AFFO).

The main difference between EBITDA and FFO is that FFO does not take into account costs related to interest and routine capital expenditures related to the maintenance of the property (CAPEX), while EBITDA does.

By Ridzwan Rahmat

Ridzwan has been analysing REITs and business trusts since 2008, and personally manages a portfolio comprising mainly of SGX-listed REITs. He founded REITsWeek in 2013.