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Cost Accounting

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Material labor costs easy trace products. When overhead costs difficult


Cost allocation is a predicament of linking some costs or collections of costs with one or more costs objective, such as departments, divisions and products. Ideally, costs must be assigned to a cost objective that instigated it. In short, costs allocation tries to categorize with through some functions representing causation.


Associating costs with costs objective is accomplished by choosing cost drivers. When utilized for allocating cost, the cost driver is usually called costs-allocation base. Main costs, such as the newsprint for the newspaper and the direct professional labor for a law organization, might each be assigned to departments, projects on the item-by-item foundation and jobs using clear cost drivers like tons of newsprint disbursed or direct-labor-hours utilized. Other types of costs obtained one at a moment, are not essential enough to defend being allocated separately. These costs are mutual and then apportioned together. A cost puddle is a group of personal costs that are assigned to cost aims using solitary cost drivers. For instance, building rent janitorial services and utilities cost might be in a similar cost pool since all are assigned on the foundation of square meters of space engaged. Another example is when universities could puddle entire operation costs of the registrar’s offices. Operations are assigned to its institutions on the foundation of the capacity of students in every faculty. In summary, entire costs in a cost pool must be produced by the identical factor. That issue is a cost driver. You might encounter terms like allocate, reallocate, attribute, trace, distribute, assign, redistribute, burden, load, reapportion and apportion, which can be utilized interchangeably to illustrate the distribution of cost to costs objective.

Direct Cost

Direct costs are able to be outlined to service or a product with a high level of accurateness. Directly perceptible means that, the cost can be easily and physically (i.e. conveniently and economically) sketched to finished products (Accounting Group 2012). Direct labor and direct materials are the two greatest similar direct costs for an enterprise business. Such examples are:

• Raw materials utilized in making a gold ring

• Salaries in a car repair enterprise for a mechanic

• Supplies and parts utilized in a panel beating enterprise

• Bottles cost used in manufacturing wine

• Paint cost utilized in manufacturing motor cycles

Overhead cost

Overhead costs are not so traced easily to a service or a product (Standard AACE 2010). These are products that are not incorporated in products or are too irrelevant to make it value tracing costs to the finished products. Some examples include:

• Factory manager Salary

• Rates and taxes for local government

• Paint utilized in manufacturing a Dolls House

• Glue utilized in furniture making

• Lubricants and oil used for factory machinery maintenance

• Business premises Insurance

Destri A., et al., 2012 highlights that, some costs might be direct in the manufacturing of one cost objects and is overhead in the manufacturing of another cost objects. Therefore, the difference between overhead and direct costs is essential as it provides the determination of costs object to be accurate. Factors that impact the categorization of items as a direct or overhead cost are whether the product is visible to the final products manufactured. For the product to be traceable it means that, the cost can be easily and physically (i.e. conveniently or economically) traced to the final finished product.

Cost behavior refers to how a cost alters in respect to the degree of the production function. This is essential as the distinction between variable, mixed costs and fixed is essential to the accurate fortitude of the costs of products or services. With fixed costs, the unit action cost will alter as the degree of units manufactured decreases or increases while with variable costs units cost do not alter. Fixed cost in total make the constant as the degree of activity rose while with variable costs and the total costs increase as the degree of activity rose. This cost behavior impacts the unit costs of products or services (Destri A., et al., 2012).  

Direct constituents are the raw materials, which are traceable directly to products being manufactured. Raw materials refer to what is used into the manufacturing of products. For instance, in the manufacturing of a men’s cloth the raw material would be such materials as the lining, fabric, thread and buttons. Another example is in manufacturing of a bottle of wine. The bottle will be direct material in manufacturing a lounge chair in the structure will be a direct material. For T%u2010shirt products, the cotton material will be direct material, and in the case of a pair of shoes, the direct material is the leather (Mwangi P., 2012).

According to Ronnie (2008), the direct labor cost refers to the amount remunerated that include salaries, wages, long service leave, payroll tax and sick leave paid to employees and is traceable to the final product. For examples are the machine operators in the factory manufacturing security screens, and bakers making bread and panel beaters fixing vehicles products (Ronnie 2008).

Manufacturing overhead characterizes costs, which are not direct labor or direct materials, which are part of the making process. Examples of such costs are:

  • Indirect labor
  • Indirect materials
  • Depreciation
  • Electricity, gas and water used in the manufacture of a product
  • Insurance
  • Repairs to tools utilized in the making process
  • Maintenance of the factory buildings

In conclusion, product costs include entire those cost that are accountable to products and are those costs with merchandise manufactured or acquired or a service offered. Direct costs are able to be visible to a service or a product with high accuracy degree. Directly traceable refers that, the cost can be easily and physically (i.e. conveniently and economically) traced to the final product. Direct labor and direct materials are the two common direct costs for an enterprise. However, overhead costs are not traced easily to a service or a product. 

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