arbitrary allocation


arbitrary allocation
A cost allocation in which the allocation base used is not likely to give accurate costs. For example, the cost of a lecture is not significantly dependent on the number of students: a class of 10 students requires one lecturer for (say) one hour as does a class of 200 students. Therefore using the number of students as an allocation base would result in an arbitrary allocation. The system of activity-based costing is based on the idea that arbitrary allocations should be avoided and replaced with cause-and-effect allocations

Accounting dictionary. 2014.

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  • arbitrary allocation — A cost allocation in which the allocation base used is not likely to give accurate costs. For example, the cost of a lecture is not significantly dependent on the number of students: a class of 10 students requires one lecturer for (say) one hour …   Big dictionary of business and management

  • Cost allocation — is a process of attributing cost to particular cost centers. For example the wage of the driver of the purchasing department can be allocated to the purchasing department cost center. It is not necessary to share the wage cost over several… …   Wikipedia

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  • cause-and-effect allocation — A cost allocation in which the allocation base is a significant determinant of the cost. To ensure that indirect costs are accurately assigned to cost objects, managers need to use cause and effect allocations rather than the arbitrary… …   Accounting dictionary

  • cost allocation — The process of assigning costs to one or more cost objects when it is not possible to trace a cost directly. Indirect costs (overheads) always have to be assigned to cost objects using cost allocations. The basis on which costs are assigned to… …   Accounting dictionary

  • cause-and-effect allocation — A cost allocation in which the allocation base is a significant determinant of the cost. To ensure that indirect costs are accurately assigned to cost objects, managers need to use cause and effect allocations rather than the arbitrary… …   Big dictionary of business and management

  • cost allocation — The process of assigning costs to one or more cost objects when it is not possible to trace a cost directly. Indirect costs (overheads) always have to be assigned to cost objects using cost allocations. The basis on which costs are assigned to… …   Big dictionary of business and management

  • traditional costing system — Any of the systematic costing methods that prevailed before the rise of activity based costing in the 1990s. Because they rely on an essentially arbitrary allocation of indirect costs, such systems do not give managers accurate product cost… …   Accounting dictionary

  • traditional costing system — Any of the systematic costing methods that prevailed before the rise of activity based costing in the 1990s. Because they rely on an essentially arbitrary allocation of indirect costs, such systems do not give managers accurate product cost… …   Big dictionary of business and management