The high and low prices, or high and low bids and offers recorded during a specified time. My Accounting Course  is a world-class educational resource developed by experts to simplify accounting, finance, & investment analysis topics, so students and professionals can learn and propel their careers. Textbook content produced by OpenStax is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License . If you’ve ever flown on an airplane, there’s a good chance you know Boeing. The Boeing Company generates around $90 billion each year from selling thousands of airplanes to commercial and military customers around the world.

Management should believe only future costs and revenues that will differ under each alternative (Arora, 2008). Relevant costs are accepted future costs and relevant profits are expected future revenues that differ among the alternative course of action being considered (Hongren and Datar, 2008). In the arena of Management accounting, one feature of relevant cost is that they are future costs which have not been incurred. SUMMARY • A relevant cost is a cost that differs in total between the alternatives in a decision. Relevant costing attempts to determine the objective cost of a business decision.


When looking at costs and how costs behave, relevant range is the range of output or production in which our assumptions are true. If you move outside the relevant range, your cost assumptions are no longer valid. Because making the assumption that all of your costs will remain constant, whether they are fixed or variable, could lead to inaccurate projections, relevant range is crucial. Hence the cost of material is relevant cost as long as the material not purchased because of deciding whether or not to purchase the material, one is to decide to sustain the cost or evade it.

  • While it is possible to develop some sort of range using all sorts of criteria, including hopes and dreams for the future of the company, those may or may not be grounded in reality.
  • The difference between the high and low prices traded during a period of time;
    with commodities, the high/low price limit established by the exchange for a specific commodity for any one day’s trading.
  • For example, Pat can take up to five people in one car, so the cost of the car is fixed for up to five people.
  • In other words, the costs which do not change with the alternative situation are irrelevant costs not considered by management.

This method of costing is termed process costing and is covered in Process Costing. The distributor charges $10 per bike for shipping for 1 to 10 bikes but $8 per bike for 11 to 20 bikes. If Bert wants to save money and control his cost of goods sold, he can order an 11th bike and drop his shipping cost by $2 per bike. It is important for Bert to know what is fixed and what is variable so that he can control his costs as much as possible. Two specialized types of fixed costs are committed fixed costs and discretionary fixed costs. These classifications are generally used for long-range planning purposes and are covered in upper-level managerial accounting courses, so they are only briefly described here.

Example of the Relevant Range

However, if volume were to triple, there would likely be more fixed costs as the company will need more space and managers. Accordingly, we state that costs are net cash flow fixed only in a relevant or reasonable range of activity. The same behavior of costs within the appropriate range is one of the presumptions of CVP analysis.

What is Relevant Range of Operations?

Managerial accountants like to assume that the relationship between a cost and an activity run in a straight line. To maintain a profit, you might need to reduce your fixed costs at some point. Why did the analysis yield lower savings than the initial estimate?

Cost Accounting Relevant Range

For this reason, adding salaried personnel to address a short-term increase in demand is not a decision most businesses make. Tony’s information illustrates that, despite the unchanging fixed cost of rent, as the level of activity increases, the per-unit fixed cost falls. In other words, fixed costs remain fixed in total but can increase or decrease on a per-unit basis.

Relevant range is a tool used to define the scope of a particular problem or decision that must be made, taking into account both the internal and external factors that will influence the outcome. It allows businesses to identify opportunities and threats within their environment that could affect their decision-making process. By understanding what is within their relevant range, businesses can make more informed decisions and plan for the future with greater accuracy and success. In this blog post, we will explore what relevant range is, how it can be used to improve decision making, and how to ensure the relevant range used accurately reflects the current conditions of the environment.

But the teams manager, who earns $75,000 annually, is unable to effectively oversee more than 10 salespeople at once. In the upcoming year, Direct AC will need to hire another manager to keep up with the team’s expansion, which will raise its fixed costs by $75,000. The average range of business activity is relevant to management for decision-making. Management can base its plans on the average range of operations because it’s consistent. It would be difficult for management to plan for production volumes based on a future depression or future speculated prosperity. Management can however predict production and sales volumes based on the average range of business operations.

Although this is probably a more accurate description of how variable costs actually behave for most companies, it is much simpler to describe and estimate costs if you assume they are linear. As long as the relevant range is clearly identified, most companies can reasonably use the linearity assumption to estimate costs. The managerial staff uses cost accounting as a tool to determine the total cost of doing business and to plan for future expansion. Managers can use this to assess whether business costs are legitimate. Period costs are simply all of the expenses that are not product costs, such as all selling and administrative expenses.

Categorie: Bookkeeping

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