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Reducing the book value of an asset if its is overstated compared to current market values.


A reduction in an individual's or a company's income as the result of an expense. For example, an unpayable credit sale may be a write-off for the creditor, especially if the debtor declares bankruptcy. The bankruptcy means that the debtor is unable to pay the debt, which results in a loss of income for the creditor. A write-off may usually be deducted from one's taxable income.


(1) To reduce the value of an asset on the books and records of a company because of a decrease in value of that asset. Because of the mechanics of double-entry bookkeeping, writing down an asset has the consequence of reducing income for that time period. The timing of write-downs is therefore critical because of the impact on taxable income, earnings reported to shareholders, asset value, earnings reported to lenders, and other instances. Large companies will often write down assets in a quarter that is already disappointing, in an attempt to get all the bad news over with at the same time.(2) A lender's agreement to accept less than the full principal balance of a loan, usually in recognition of the fact that it won't collect the full balance anyway.

References in periodicals archive ?
The result is a larger write-down of these assets than initially anticipated.
The Company recorded a write-down on current ginseng crops of $2.
The balance of the restructuring charge includes a write-down of a note receivable for discontinued underwriting operations, a special reserve for closing an unprofitable operation, and write-downs of acquisition-related intangibles.
The write-downs include $41 million aftertax on the hydrotreater project at Unocal's Los Angeles refinery in Wilmington, Calif.
It is expected that losses will result in the full write-down of class M-2 in the very near future, at which time class M-1 will encounter write-downs as a result of monthly losses.
AGCO's plan to restructure its Randers manufacturing operations, including the expected cost savings and costs and write-downs attendant thereto, are forward looking statements.
The Yes option is more appropriate for structures that incorporate the concept of multiplicity of credit events or partial write-downs of reference obligations, as most do.
Series 2001-A Group 1 has had no OC since the May 2003 distribution, and class BF has taken further write-downs, with an ending balance of $67,071.
However, Standard & Poor's does not anticipate any further material write-downs that would jeopardize the profitability of Principal's residential mortgage banking business in 2004.
The holders of the Notes provided consent to modify the definition of "Consolidated Net Worth" to add back up to $100 million of non-cash write-downs recorded by Methanex from January 1, 2002 to September 30, 2003, and up to an additional $100 million of non-cash write-downs recorded by Methanex after September 30, 2003.
The proposed amendment to the Indenture would modify the definition of "Consolidated Net Worth" to add back non-cash write-downs of up to US$100 million recorded from January 1, 2002 to September 30, 2003, and non-cash write-downs of up to an additional US$100 million recorded after September 30, 2003.