Profit before Tax (PBT) Definition

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Profit before Tax (PBT) Definition

What Is Profit before Tax (PBT)?

Profit before tax is a metric that examines a company’s earnings before it must pay corporate income tax. It is basically all of a company’s earnings before any taxes are deducted.

On the income statement, profit before tax is calculated as operating profit less interest. Profit before tax is the amount utilized to compute a company’s tax liability.

Understanding Profit before Tax

Profit before tax is also known as earnings before taxes (EBT) or pre-tax profit. The figure represents all of a company’s earnings before taxes. A run through of the income statement demonstrates the many types of expenditures that a corporation must pay prior to calculating operational profit. Gross profit is calculated after deducting the cost of items sold (COGS).Operating profit takes into account both cost of goods sold and other operational expenditures. Earnings before interest and taxes are another name for operating profit (EBIT).Following EBIT, only interest and taxes are deducted before arriving at net income.

Key Takeaways

  • Profit before tax equals profits before tax.
  • Profit before tax is used to calculate how much tax a business owes.
  • Profit before tax may also be a measure of profitability that allows for better comparison across firms that pay different amounts of taxes.

Calculation of Profitbefore Tax

Comprehension the income statement may aid an analyst’s understanding of PBT, its computation, and its applications. The third part of the income statement is concerned with interest and taxes. These deductions are subtracted from the total of the second part, resulting in operational profit (EBIT).Income is an essential measure that covers both the interest earned on investments and the interest paid out for leverage.

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Following the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), all C-Corporations are subject to a federal tax rate of 21%. All other businesses are pass-throughs, which means they are taxed at the same rate as individual taxpayers. State taxes must also be paid by any company. State tax rates may vary greatly depending on the state and organization type.

The fundamentals of calculating PBT are straightforward. Subtract any interest payments from the operating profit on the income statement, then add any interest generated. PBT is the initial stage in determining net profit, although it does not include tax deductions. You may also put taxes back into the net income to calculate it in reverse.

As previously stated, various kinds of businesses will have distinct federal and state tax liabilities. The PBT will be used to calculate the actual amount of taxes owing.

Usefulness of PBT

PBT is not often used as a key performance measure on an income statement. Typically, they are concerned with gross profit, operational profit, and net profit. The isolation of a company’s tax payments, like interest, may be an intriguing and relevant statistic for cost efficiency management.

The amount of tax a firm will pay is also determined by its pre-tax earnings. Any credits would be deducted from the tax due rather than the pre-tax earnings.

Furthermore, eliminating the tax gives managers and stakeholders another metric to use when analyzing margins. Because tax is not included, the PBT margin will be larger than the net income margin. The difference between PBT margin and net margin is determined by the amount of taxes paid.

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Furthermore, removing income tax isolates one variable that might have a significant influence for a number of reasons. C-Corps, for example, pay a federal tax rate of 21%. However, various sectors may obtain tax benefits, generally in the form of credits, which may have an effect on the total tax burden. One example is renewable energy. Wind, solar, and other renewables may be eligible for both an investment and a production tax credit. Thus, comparing enterprises’ PBT when renewables are included may assist to offer a more accurate estimate of profitability.


Working down the income statement offers a picture of profitability with various sorts of costs. EBIT, or operating profit, is a measure of a company’s total operational capability. This covers both direct COGS connected with product manufacture and indirect operational expenditures linked with the main company but not immediately related to it.

PBT is one of the last processes in determining net profit. Interest is deducted from EBIT. This yields a company’s taxable net income.

Interest is often used to determine a company’s capitalization structure. If a corporation has a large amount of debt, it will have to make greater interest payments. EBIT is often the best indication of a company’s entire operating capability, whereas disparities in EBIT vs. PBT indicate debt sensitivity.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) is a logical extension of EBIT as a measure of operational profitability and efficiency. EBITDA is calculated by adding the non-cash activities of depreciation and amortization to EBIT. Many experts believe that calculating EBITDA is a fast approach to measure a company’s cash flow and free cash flow without doing comprehensive computations. EBITDA, like EBIT, is calculated before interest and taxes, making it easily comparable. Because of its universal relevance, EBITDA will be used in many different sorts of multiples comparisons. One example is the ratio of enterprise value to EBITDA.

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