The Real Value of Intangibles

There is no accepted standard for appraising the worth of nonphysical assets like brands, human capital, and managerial expertise. Yet these are the essence of 21st-century business.

Denise Caruso

Cost-benefit analysis can be an effective tool to analyze simple, one-dimensional problems, such as whether to install dividers on dangerous stretches of highway, where relatively unambiguous data is in abundant supply and there is little controversy. It also is a good way to elucidate the trade-offs for a given policy or regulation, or to produce a summary statistic about its economic efficiency.

But the cost-benefit method … [ Read more ]