Flexible (Variable) Budget

Dictionary of Accounting Terms for: Flexible (Variable) Budget
Flexible (Variable) Budget

one based on different levels of activity. It is an extremely useful tool for comparing the actual cost incurred to the cost allowable for the activity level achieved. It is dynamic in nature rather than static. By using the cost-volume formula (or flexible budget formula), a series of budgets can be developed easily for various levels of activity. A static (FIXED) budget is geared for only one level of activity and has problems in cost control. Flexible budgeting distinguishes between fixed and variable costs, thus allowing for a budget that can be automatically adjusted (via changes in variable cost totals) to the particular level of activity actually attained. Thus variances between actual costs and budgeted costs are adjusted for volume ups and downs before differences due to price and quantity factors are computed. The primary use of the flexible budget is for accurate measure of performance by comparing actual costs for a given output with the budgeted costs for the same level of output.

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