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inflation accountingadjustments to a firm's accounts to allow for the effects of INFLATION and arrive at a view of the real profitability of the firm. In a period of rising prices when the purchasing power of the money unit is declining, profit calculations based upon the HISTORIC COST of STOCKS and FIXED ASSETS are likely to overstate the real profit position. Various methods of allowing for the effects of inflation on the PROFIT-AND-LOSS ACCOUNT and the BALANCE SHEET have been tried.
One relatively simple method of inflation-adjusting a firm's accounting results is the current purchasing-power method. This uses a PRICE INDEX number to adjust the calculated profit figure from the profit-and-loss account, and to express it in real terms. A more detailed method is the current cost-accounting method. This produces a supplementary current-cost profit-and-loss account and balance sheet. In these current-cost accounts the deduction from revenue for COST OF SALES is based upon the REPLACEMENT COST of the goods sold (cost of sales adjustment); while DEPRECIATION is calculated on the replacement cost of fixed assets used and not on their historic cost (depreciation adjustment). See REVALUATION PROVISION, APPRECIATION, definition 1.