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Posted by on Sunday, January 15, 2012 at 6:30pm.

It is possible for a company’s liabilities to exceed its assets. When this occurs, the owners’ equity is negative. Can this happen with market values? Why or why not?

I thought that it would not happen since market value is the price that equity, liabilities, and assets can be bought and sold and thus equity can't be a negative value.

  • Money - , Sunday, January 15, 2012 at 6:40pm

    Yes. A company's liabilities may exceed its assets. This is particularly true of a start-up company. However, some long-established companies also have more liabilities than assets. Generally, in this situation, a company's market value goes down -- and eventually may disappear.

  • Money - , Sunday, January 15, 2012 at 9:31pm

    Thanks for the help.
    -Sarah

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