Costs: Basic Concepts
An industrial enterprise encompasses the interaction of many specialised activities which are directed and integrated by management in the interests of the firm’s guiding objectives. If costs are to serve as an effective guide to managerial decision making, they must be appraised within an analytical framework comparable in coverage and complexity to the processes to be controlled. Accordingly, the pattern of industrial costs may usefully be regarded as an intricate structure of relationships among costs at various levels of aggregation, over different periods of time, and reflecting the influence of different areas of performance. In exploring the structure of industrial costs, this chapter will focus on total costs, on cost proportions and on unit costs.
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