# What is a Variable Cost Per Unit?

What is a Variable Cost Per Unit?

## Normal Costing vs. Actual Costing

Managers can use these formulas to calculate the total production costs. For instance, managers first need to find out how many hours it took the company to produce the product and how much the company is paying its employees per hour. Using the first actual costing formula, these numbers make up the labor portion of the production costs. Two costing methodologies, actual costing and normal costing, assist businesses in evaluating production costs.

## Actual costing

However, the market may not support a price that would yield appropriate margins for your granola. It is for reasons like this that determining a unit product cost before beginning work is so critical. With this information in hand, you can step back and decide what changes, if any, need to be made before you proceed with full-blown production. Normal costing is a method of costing that is used in the derivation of cost. The components used for the normal costing to derive the cost are actual costs of material, actual costs of labor and standard overhead rate that are used for allocation purpose.

### What is actual costing system?

Calculating Actual Cost Multiply the units of actual material used in the production run by the material’s actual unit cost. This is the actual material cost. Multiply the actual labor hours invested in the production run by the actual wage rate paid per hour.

The production cost is comprised of labor, overhead, materials and any other associated expenses. Your company is going to be printing 5,000 purple T-shirts for a local bank. The shirts themselves cost you \$2,000, and the vinyl lettering costs another \$500. All of your shirts are shrink-wrapped, which adds \$200 to your overall costs. Given the higher cost of your granola, you will either need to find alternative ways to source your materials, lower labor costs, reduce overhead expenses or raise the price on your granola.

This is particularly the case if you might be able to cut these costs in some way down the line. By doing so, you will then be able to develop a cost that allows for maximum profitability over the long term. Whichever approach your company chooses to take, however, be sure that you note it alongside your calculations so that it is clear to future bookkeepers or accounts. You use a large industrial oven and one assembly-line-style machine to produce your granola.

Implicit costs come into consideration when an entity is foregoing other types of income and choosing to take a different path. Businesses may analyze economic and normal profit metrics when determining whether to remain in business or when considering new types of costs. Unit product cost is the total cost of a given production run (called a cost pool), divided by the number of units produced.

## Total Cost in Economics: Definition & Formula

Normal profit is often viewed in conjunction with economic profit. Normal profit and economic profit are economic considerations while accounting profit refers to the profit a company reports on its financial statements each period. Normal profit and economic profit can be metrics an entity may choose to consider when it faces substantial implicit costs.

## What Does Actual Cost Mean?

Examples of explicit costs include raw materials, labor and wages, rent, and owner compensation. Implicit costs, on the other hand, are costs associated with not taking an action, called the opportunity cost, and are therefore much more difficult to quantify.

Eventually, the industry reaches a state of normal profit as prices stabilize and profits decline. In the meantime, firms managing for economic profit may take action to obtain a more prominent market position, improve operational performance to lower direct costs, or cut costs to decrease indirect costs.

• Using the first actual costing formula, these numbers make up the labor portion of the production costs.
• For instance, managers first need to find out how many hours it took the company to produce the product and how much the company is paying its employees per hour.
• Managers can use these formulas to calculate the total production costs.

Insurance, electricity, your permit to produce food and the mortgage on your production facility also need to be accounted for. Since it only takes you one day to produce one batch of peanut butter granola, this figure is fairly easy to calculate. If all you will be producing are T-shirts, you can determine a general cost per shirt in the same way you calculated the unit product cost for the local bank’s order in the above example. You will still need to know your factory’s overhead costs, the cost of your materials and the price you will pay for labor.

## Problems with Actual Costing

### How do you calculate actual cost?

Actual costing is the recording of product costs based on the following factors: Actual cost of materials. Actual cost of labor. Actual overhead costs incurred, allocated using the actual quantity of the allocation base experienced during the reporting period.

A company may report high accounting profit but still be in a state of normal profit if the opportunity costs of maintaining business operations are high. The reason you need the unit product cost is also important when determining what information to include in its calculation. If, for instance, you are calculating it so that you can find the lowest possible price at which you can sell your product, you should leave out certain overhead or labor costs.

## Calculating Actual Cost

After assessing her projected accounting, normal, and economic profits she can make a more informed decision on whether to expand her business. The term normal profit may also be used in macroeconomics to refer to economic areas broader than a single business. In addition to a single business, as in the example above, normal profit may refer to an entire industry or market.

Normal costing uses indirect materials and labor costs to estimate production costs. It provides a more consistent valuation of production costs which eliminates month to month fluctuations. Understanding how to calculate these costs, as well as the advantages of each, is important in choosing the appropriate methodology for a given production process. When you are running a business that manufactures products, it’s critical to be on top of your financials.

From your materials’ cost and production expenses to overhead and labor, keeping tabs on every detail of the investment involved in manufacturing is essential to determine future spending, hiring and pricing. One aspect of your expenses that you will need to pay close attention to is your unit product cost. When attempting to calculate economic and normal profit, it is important to understand the two components of total cost. Explicit costs are easily quantifiable and generally involve a transaction that is tied to an expense.

## Fixed cost:

Actual costing uses the actual cost of materials and labor to calculate production costs. This is beneficial when analyzing a specific portion of the production process and an exact accounting of costs is needed.

In macroeconomic theory, normal profit should occur in conditions ofperfect competitionandeconomic equilibrium. Conceptually this is because competition eliminates economic profit. Moreover, economic profit can serve as a key metric for understanding the state of profits comprehensively within an industry. When a company or companies are achieving economic profit, it may encourage other firms to enter the market because there is profit potential. New entrants contribute more of the product to the market, which lowers themarket priceof goods and has an equalizing effect on profits.

Since the normal costing makes use of standard overhead rates instead of actual overhead rates, this method is used in determining the product costs where there is no sudden increase in the costs. This method of normal costing is also generally accepted, and it is allowed to derive the cost of product using this technique under GAAP and IFRS. Normal profit allows business owners to compare the profitability of their work with that of other possible business ventures.

The cost to have your machines up and running on any given day is \$50. This includes maintenance and repairs and other incidentals, once again divided over a year.

What is a Variable Cost Per Unit?