Obsolete Inventory Explained

journal entry for obsolete inventory

What would the debit or credit to the direct material efficiency variance account be for the current… Now that we have the Usage Percentage, we can assign categories to our inventory items. Keep in mind, the brackets you use will highly vary based on your industry and business.

To recognize the fall in value, obsolete inventory must be written-down or written-off in the financial statements in accordance withgenerally accepted accounting principles . When obsolete inventory is disposed of, both the related amount in the inventory asset account and the contra asset account are removed in the disposal journal entry. Obsolete inventory is a term that refers to inventory that is at the end of its product life cycle. This inventory has not been sold or used for a long period of time and is not expected to be sold in the future. This type of inventory has to be written-down or written-off and can cause large losses for a company. Similarly, in this journal entry, XYZ’s total assets on the balance sheet were decreased by $10,000 while expenditures on the income statement were raised by the exact cost of $10,000 on Dec 10.


Later on, when profits are lower than expected, the company might sell the written-down obsolete inventory at high profit margins in order to increase the reported profits (i.e., credit cost of goods sold). Companies report inventory obsolescence by debiting an expense account and crediting a contra asset account. Examples of expense accounts include cost of goods sold, inventory obsolescence accounts, and loss on inventory write-down. A contra asset account may include an allowance for obsolete inventory and an obsolete inventory reserve. When the inventory write-down is small, companies typically charge the cost of goods sold account.

Why Does Obsolete Inventory Matter?

Since obsolete inventory is stock a company can no longer sell, it can negatively affect a company’s overall financial health.

As a result, the write-off of inventory must be a routine process regularly audited. Inventory can be deemed obsolete for myriad reasons, including loss of market value from oversupply or release of a new model. Obsolete inventory may not have value in your business, but it can still be sold for a gain.

Inventory Control System vs. Inventory Management System

GAAP requires that all obsolete inventory be written off at the time it’s determined obsolete. Therefore, if a company journal entry for obsolete inventory is not regularly reviewing their inventory for obsolescence they could have a large hit to their bottom line.

When an organization has exhausted all other options, it must write-off obsolete inventory as a loss. Under Generally Accepted Accounting Principles , it should list the obsolete inventory as an expense and use an inventory reserve account to offset the loss. Perhaps an item breaks easily or doesn’t work as advertised, due to either a design oversight or a mistake in the manufacturing process. Customers may return these items—a problem in itself—and leave negative reviews. Similarly, a new item that has no advantage over similar products already on the market could underperform and result in excess inventory.

Establishing a Sales Operating Account (Current Fund, GNDEPT)

As a result, the life cycle of parts is becoming shorter, increasing obsolescence at a much faster rate. As such, this https://personal-accounting.org/ type of inventory must be written off or written down, which can result in a large loss for your parts department.

What is provision for obsolete inventory?

The provision for obsolete inventory percentage is used to establish the dollar amount of your expected obsolete inventory. This amount can change as you adjust your inventory buying to reduce long-term unsold inventory.

This could include moving them to a different place in a store or on a website, or highlighting them in a marketing email to customers. Businesses could also experiment with different channels—if certain items aren’t selling in-store, promote them through social media or online ads that drive shoppers to the ecommerce site. Purchasing should be data-driven and closely tied to forecasting and demand planning. When it’s not, and the purchasing team is buying based on anecdotal knowledge or other unreliable factors, it leads to problems. Deal-hungry purchasing managers willing to buy everything in bulk to reduce the cost per item can also leave a company with too much product on its hands. Obsolete inventory also shows up as an expense on the balance sheet, one of a company’s most important financial documents. Businesses must come up with their own parameters for when different types of inventory become obsolete, and this will vary between industries—think about food vs. furniture, for example—and product categories.

Accounting for Consignment Inventory for Vendors

\nA contra-asset account gets reported on the balance sheet immediately beneath the asset account to which it relates. Obsolete inventory refers to items that you’ve purchased for sale but turn out not to be saleable. Within QuickBooks 2012, you record inventory disposal by adjusting the physical item count of the inventory items. One way is to use an inventory management system that helps track inventory throughout its lifecycle.

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This is why it’s important for businesses to account for inventory write-off when the value of inventory changes significantly. When the inventory loses its value, the loss impacts the balance sheet and income statement of the business.

What is the journal entry to record damaged inventory?

At the end of the year, company has to record the inventory obsolete which equals 5% of the total inventory. We assume that the company does not has any provision in the past, so they have to record the inventory obsolete for the total inventory.

  • Use your spreadsheet to work out a “freight and duty” cost for every item in each delivery, as it comes in, and then add this to the net cost price of the item to get your landed cost.
  • As a result, the write-off of inventory must be a routine process regularly audited.
  • It means that telephone sets will not be sold or will be sold at a lesser price than the initially expected price.
  • If the particular inventory has not been identified, then in such cases, businesses can set up the inventory write-off reserve.
  • The allowance for obsolete inventory account is a reserve that is maintained as a contra asset account so that the original cost of the inventory can be held on the inventory account until it is disposed of.

Additionally, minimizing obsolete inventory makes it easier for companies to put together accurate financial statements and get a clear picture of their current inventory carrying costs. There are fewer chances for bookkeeping errors or to overlook excess inventory sitting in a dusty corner of the warehouse. On the other hand, reducing obsolete inventory can boost a business’ financial health. It lowers overall inventory costs and the losses that come with writing-off this stock. Not wasting money on obsolete inventory frees up cash the company can invest in other areas to help it succeed. Staff should review sales numbers as part of their inventory analysis on at least a monthly basis and compare those to current inventory levels, often determined with a physical inventory count. Businesses can use these numbers to calculate inventory turnover, which is a ratio of how often it sells-through inventory over a certain period of time.