Absorption Costing

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DEFINITION of 'Absorption Costing'

A managerial accounting cost method of expensing all costs associated with manufacturing a particular product. Absorption costing uses the total direct costs and overhead costs associated with manufacturing a product as the cost base. Generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) require absorption costing for external reporting.

Absorption costing is also known as "full absorption costing".

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Absorption Costing'

Some of the direct costs associated with manufacturing a product include wages for workers physically manufacturing a product, the raw materials used in producing a product, and all of the overhead costs, such as all utility costs, used in producing a good.

Absorption costing includes anything that is a direct cost in producing a good as the cost base. This is contrasted with variable costing, in which fixed manufacturing costs are not absorbed by the product. Advocates promote absorption costing because fixed manufacturing costs provide future benefits.

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