Prepare a memorandum containing responses to the following items.
(a) Describe the cost flow assumptions used in average-cost, FIFO, and LIFO methods of inventory valuation.
(b) Distinguish between weighted-average-cost and moving-average-cost for inventory costing purposes.
(c) Identify the effects on both the balance sheet and the income statement of using the LIFO method instead of the FIFOmethod for inventory costing purposes over a substantial time period when purchase prices of inventoriable items arerising. State why these effects take place.
The cost flow assumption is related to matching cost flow with the physical flow of goods. Under LIFO ending inventory would be lower during the inflation period, and average cost computation is different under periodic and perpetual systems.
Cost flow assumption is the way of taking the flow of cost for every issue or withdrawal of inventory from the pool. Inventories are acquired at different costs at different times. But the physical flow of goods may be in any sequence. So through the cost flow assumption, the physical flow of goods is matched with the cost flow of goods.
Cost flow assumption under FIFO
Under the FIFO system, it is assumed that the inventories are issued or withdrawn in the same way they were acquired. So the cost flow is matched in the same manner of acquisition,
Cost flow assumption under LIFO
Under the LIFO system, inventories issued or withdrawn are assumed to be in the opposite direction of acquiring them. So, in this system, the cost flow matches the recently acquired inventories.
Cost flow assumption under Average
The average method of inventory valuation assumed that irrespective of the acquisition date, the inventories are always utilized based on average cost. This average cost may be a moving average or weighted average.
Weighted average cost
The weighted average cost is applied in the periodic system. Under this method, all the inventories are average at the end of the period, and the COGS is also determined on that basis.
Moving average cost
The moving average cost is different from the weighted average cost. This is applied under the perpetual system. Under this method, the inventories are averaged at each purchase or sale. The ending inventory and COGFS would be based on the latest average cost.
Under LIFO, the COGS are valued based on the reverse order of acquiring them. Thus ending inventory under this method would always be lower than the market price. Under FIFO, the ending inventory matches with the current market prices, and COGS would be lower than the market rate.
In the given case, as market prices are rising, there would be a widening gap between the market value of inventory and ending inventory on the balance sheet. Further, the COGS would be kept on increasing. As a result, net gross profit would be lower year on year, and current assets would also start falling.
John Adams Company’s record of transactions for the month of April was as follows.
April 1 (balance on hand) 600 @ $ 6.00 April 3 500 @ $10.00
4 1,500 @ 6.08 9 1,400 @ 10.00
8 800 @ 6.40 11 600 @ 11.00
13 1,200 @ 6.50 23 1,200 @ 11.00
21 700 @ 6.60 27 900 @ 12.00
29 500 @ 6.79 4,600
(a) Assuming that periodic inventory records are kept in units only, compute the inventory at April 30 using (1) LIFO and(2) average-cost.
(b) Assuming that perpetual inventory records are kept in dollars, determine the inventory using (1) FIFO and (2) LIFO.
(c) Compute the cost of goods sold assuming periodic inventory procedures and inventory priced at FIFO.
(d) In an inflationary period, which inventory method—FIFO, LIFO, average cost—will show the highest net income?
George Solti, the controller for Garrison Lumber Company, has recently hired you as assistant controller. He wishes to determine your expertise in the area of inventory accounting and therefore asks you to answer thefollowing unrelated questions.
(a) A company is involved in the wholesaling and retailing of automobile tires for foreign cars. Most of the inventory is imported,and it is valued on the company’s records at the actual inventory cost plus freight-in. At year-end, the warehousing costs areprorated over cost of goods sold and ending inventory. Are warehousing costs considered a product cost or a period cost?
(b) A certain portion of a company’s “inventory” is composed of obsolete items. Should obsolete items that are not currentlyconsumed in the production of “goods or services to be available for sale” be classified as part of inventory?
(c) A company purchases airplanes for sale to others. However, until they are sold, the company charters and services theplanes. What is the proper way to report these airplanes in the company’s financial statements?
(d) A company wants to buy coal deposits but does not want the financing for the purchase to be reported on its financialstatements. The company therefore establishes a trust to acquire the coal deposits. The company agrees to buy the coalover a certain period of time at specified prices. The trust is able to finance the coal purchase and pay off the loan as itis paid by the company for the minerals. How should this transaction be reported?
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