The effect of tax depreciation on the stochastic replacement policy

Roger Adkins, Dean Paxson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The optimal replacement policy for an asset subject to a stochastic deteriorating operating cost is determined for three different tax depreciation schedules and a known re-investment cost, as the solution to a two-factor model using a quasi-analytical method. We find that tax depreciation exerts a critical influence over the replacement policy by lowering the operating cost thresholds. Although typically a decline in the corporate tax rate, increase in any initial capital allowance, or decrease in the depreciation lifetime (increase in depreciation rate) results in a lower operating cost threshold which justifies replacing older equipment, these results are not universal, and indeed for younger age assets the result may be the opposite. An accelerating depreciation schedule may incentivize early replacement in a deterministic context, but not necessarily for an environment of uncertainty. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-164
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Operational Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 16 Aug 2013


  • Capital budgeting
  • Equipment replacement
  • Quasi-analytical solution
  • Tax depreciation
  • Uncertainty modelling


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