# How To Calculate Beginning & Ending Inventory Costs

Older items are always sold first in order to keep a steady supply of newer products in inventory, ready for sale. Costly – It requires a high level of effort, time and money. If you plan to take a cost-effective https://online-accounting.net/ approach to implement this method, it’ll require a lot of preparation and work from your team. Depending on the number of items that need specific identification, this will be much more costly than other methods.

As such, certain businesses strategically select LIFO or FIFO methods based on different business environments. Ending inventory is the value of goods available for sale at the end of an accounting period. It is the beginning inventory plus net purchases minus cost of goods sold. Net purchases refer to inventory purchases after returns or discounts have been taken out. This method of calculating ending inventory is formed from the belief that companies sell their oldest items first to keep the newest items in stock. It’s important to note that during inflationary periods, the FIFO method will result in a higher ending inventory amount.

Finally, the last method – we are saving the easiest one for last. Specific identification will tell you exactly which purchase to use when determining cost. You will now learn how to calculate the Cost of Goods Sold using 4 different methods. Harold Averkamp has worked as a university accounting instructor, accountant, and consultant for more than 25 years. He is the sole author of all the materials on AccountingCoach.com. Based in San Diego, Calif., Madison Garcia is a writer specializing in business topics.

## Weighted Average

After you gather the above information, you can begin calculating your cost of goods sold. Depending on your business and goals, you may decide to calculate COGS weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually. COGS excludes indirect costs, such as distribution expenses. Do not factor things like utilities, marketing expenses, or shipping fees into the cost of goods sold. Next, estimated gross profit is subtracted from net sales to estimate the cost of goods sold.

Some companies also include indirect costs, such as depreciation of equipment, labor costs, and salaries of project supervisors. These transactions account for all of the pluses and minuses that occur within a specified accounting period.

In the next month, the company purchases another 1,000 units at \$10 each. This means that a total of 2,000 units were purchased in the accounting period for a total of \$15,000. At the ending of the period, the company has 500 units left, which means it sold 1,500 items during that period. Unlike the first-in, first-out method and last-in, first-out method, the weighted-average cost method assigns the same value to each item bought. You can use this method to balance the LIFO and FIFO methods because it provides an average of all costs. Ending inventory is an important formula for any business that sells goods.

## How To Calculate Cost Of Inventory

For the sake of simplicity, we’ll use the same company example as our previous formula. In this example your company had a beginning inventory of 100 units purchased at \$5 each, then placed a replenishment order of 100 units at \$7 each. This gives a total cost of goods available for sale of \$1,200. Let’s put it into practice and say you’re calculating the ending inventory for your retail store.

However, a gross profit method should not be used to determine year-end inventory, nor is it an acceptable method for tax purposes, or annual financial statements. The drawback of this method is that the estimation of gross profit in step 2, base on the historical estimate, which may not necessarily be the case in the future. Also, if there are any inventory losses in that period are higher or lower than the historical rates, it can lead to an inappropriate amount of closing inventory. LIFO Inventory MethodLIFO is one accounting method for inventory valuation on the balance sheet.

Let’s assume the 200 items in beginning inventory, as of 7/31, were all purchased previously for \$20. It is one of the vital reasons company’s prefer LIFO accounting over FIFO.

For example, say a company starts the month with 50 units of inventory, purchases another 4 units of inventory and sells 25 units of inventory. Ending inventory refers to the sellable inventory you have leftover at the end of an accounting period.

## What Is A Balance Sheet?

Garcia received her Master of Science in accountancy from San Diego State University. Based in St. Petersburg, Fla., Karen Rogers covers the financial markets for several online publications. She received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of South Florida. Then, when a purchase is made, the sand sold isn’t taken from the bottom of the sand mountain, but instead from the top – so the newest sand added to the pile is also the first sand sold.

• Harod’s Company has a beginning inventory of 1,000 units of product and purchases another 1,000 units at \$5 each during the first month of an accounting period.
• The biggest factor that affects the dollar value of ending inventory is the inventory valuation method that a company chooses.
• The actual unit costs must be consistent with the cost flow assumption (FIFO, weighted-average, etc.) that was elected by the company.
• First, determine the initial inventory value This will involve taking a count of every piece of inventory that is currently stored and multiplying it by the price of those goods.
• Hand-counting inventory is tedious, especially for fast-growing businesses.
• Inventory turnover is a ratio that measures the change in the value of an inventory over time.
• Here you simply take a mathematic average of the cost of all the items you have purchased and then extend it by the ending inventory.

Specific Identification – clearly, this will be your favorite method…it is the easiest to calculate in our examples because it specifically tells you which purchases inventory comes from. This is most often used for high priced inventory – think car sales for example. When a car dealership purchases a blue BMW convertible for \$20,000 and later sells it for \$60,000…they will want to show the exact cost of the BMW it sold as opposed to the cost of another car. So, specific identification exactly matches the costs of the inventory with the revenue it creates. Under the «first in, first out» method or FIFO, the business assumes that the oldest inventory is the first inventory sold. In a time of rising prices, this means that ending inventory will be higher.

## Ending Inventory

This number is generating by adding beginning inventory and purchases, then subtracting sold inventory. Most businesses use the first in first out method of assigning costs to inventory, which assumes the inventory that you purchased first is sold first. With FIFO, your inventory is valued at the most current price and better reflects ending inventory formula actual marketplace costs. If there is a huge variation in the tally of the actual inventory and what is there in the automated system, then there may be an issue of shrinkage, etc. On the other hand, if the ending inventory balance is understated, then, as a result, the net income for the same period may also become understated.

The next month, it purchases another 1,000 units at \$15 each. The first set of units purchased cost \$10,000 and the second set of units purchased cost a total of \$15,000 for a total of 2,000 units and \$25,000 spent on new inventory. At the end of the accounting period, the company has 500 units left, which means it sold 1,500 units in that period. In this formula, your beginning inventory is the dollar amount of product the company has at the onset of the accounting period. The net purchases portion of this formula is the cost of any new product or inventory items bought during the accounting period. The cost of goods sold is the amount of money it costs to produce goods that are part of the company’s inventory.

We do not have direct access to your warehouse throughout the year, so we are not able to track the details related to inventory. Therefore, this process allows us to adjust the inventory account to reflect this. This adjustment has a direct impact on your overall profits and taxes, so it’s important to get a good value to close one year and start the next year off with the true value. An ending inventory is defined as the total value of an inventory of goods after a certain time period of sales.

This method assumes that the price of the last product bought is also the cost of the first item sold and that the most recent items bought were the first sold. The LIFO method takes into account the most recent items bought first in terms of the cost of goods sold and allocates older items bought in the ending inventory. Smaller companies are sometimes able to calculate their ending inventory by simply counting the product leftover at the end of an accounting period. However, most companies use a formula to determine the total value of the product left over. You can find your cost of goods sold on your business income statement. An income statement details your company’s profits or losses over a period of time, and is one of the main financial statements.

## An Easy Way To Determine Cost Of Goods Sold Using The Fifo Method

And if you price your products too low, you won’t turn enough of a profit. Pricing your products and services is one of the biggest responsibilities you have as a business owner.

In the first portion of the equation, beginning inventory is the dollar value of your company’s goods on hand at the start of each accounting period. Accurate inventory counting helps plan your open-to-buy budget, too. There’s not much sense in investing \$10,000 into stock replenishment if you have \$7,500 worth of unsold inventory.

Now, if you can’t count inventory on hand at the end of an accounting period or you can assign values to products, there’s a few things you can do. There’s a wide range of situations that can cause this, like too much shipping activity at the end of the month to do a count. If your staff is pressed for time or you just don’t have anyone available, there are two methods you can use to estimate the closing inventory. The most important variable in calculating ending inventory is having an accurate inventory count. Hand-counting inventory is tedious, especially for fast-growing businesses.

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Sarah, a recent MBA graduate, just received her first real job since graduating from business school. She got a job at a manufacturing company called ACME Lumber Yard, where they sell timber to various real estate development firms. Her first assignment is to calculate the ending inventory for all the lumber that is in stock. Ending inventory is the value of goods available for sale at the end of the accounting period. It’s simple to utilize, and a basic formula makes calculating the average cost very straightforward.