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Title: Costs: key element of financial control
Authors: Stratan, Alexandru
Manole, Tatiana
Keywords: costs
full costs
direct costs
indirect costs
standard costs
cost-benefit analysis
normative value
value assignment
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher: Institute of Society Transformation
Citation: STRATAN, Alexandru, MANOLE, Tatiana. Costs: key element of financial control. In: Economic Annals-XXI. 2018, vol. 173, nr. 9-10, pp. 49-54. ISSN 1728-6220 (Print). ISSN 1728-6239 (Online). .
Abstract: Costs always stay in the focus of financial managers, being an important indicator with a degrading impact on the benefit of the entity. The authors review the evolution of costs: from actual costs to standard activity-based costs (ABC) and those with a social impact. In terms of developing costs, we found out that at the stage basic production of raw materials, direct costs outweigh indirect costs, yet in the process of processing raw materials into finished products, we observe a reverse process - indirect costs outweigh direct costs, which is a process related to a cost-per-activity. The basic producer is disadvantaged. Therefore, we believe that a new state strategy on producer price is needed. Some researchers believe that standard costs should be abandoned, moving to activity-based costs. We consider that standard costs are necessary for the public-budget sector. We also believe that the cost-benefit analysis (CBA), with a social character, justifies, first of all, the obtained social result and then the costs. CBA quantify the value of the consequences of state policy on the members of society. Standard costs should not be abandoned. They are a guideline, and a benchmark of scientifically established costs. Yet, they should be reviewed each year, reflecting the changes taking place in the country’s economy. We see this phenomenon in determining the standard cost per weighted pupil at financing the pre-university education in the Republic of Moldova. In agriculture, the notion of standard cost does not have to be standardised. This stage is past, outdated. At the same time, it is necessary to investigate the costs of activities. We propose to use a parity price policy, which would balance inter-relationships, especially between agriculture and industry. This is a necessity determined by the economic character of the Republic of Moldova. Therefore, the Ministry of Economy of The Republic of Moldova should calculate activity costs, new cost accounting and market pricing, giving priority to the primary producer, the raw material manufacturer. In this research, since it is difficult to analyse costs by activity in agriculture, we analysed the related process by phases: the raw material production phase and the processing stage in several agricultural crops (wheat, maize, and sunflower). The analysis demonstrates the impact of costs on the absolute benefit per one hectare and the profitability per one hectare, these two financial indicators being based on costs and the market price of one tonne of cereals. The authors’ research on the financing of gymnasiums has demonstrated the financial efforts made by the state to finance schools with a number of weighted pupils equal to or less than 41 weighted pupils or 91 weighted pupils. Expenditures are high, but the quality of studies is very low. The problem must be solved for the benefit of large district-performing schools. We believe that money spent inefficiently for the maintenance of schools should be directed to create the conditions for the children coming from small schools (gymnasiums) to conventional schools where there are highly qualified teachers. The cost-per-activity model demonstrates that indirect costs significantly outweigh direct costs. We also believe that the standard-based cost system can be applied more effectively with regard to public services, as in the case of Moldova.
Description: Bibliogr.: pp. 53-54(15 titl.). DOI: JEL Classification: H4; H72; H83.
ISSN: 1728-6220
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