Definition of Cumulative Translation Adjustment (CTA) account
Cumulative Translation Adjustment (CTA) account
An entry in a translated balance sheet in which gains
and/or losses from translation have been accumulated over a period of years. The cta account is required
under the FASB No. 52 rule.
a measure used in academic finance articles to measure the excess returns an investor would have received over a particular time period if he or she were invested in a particular stock.
This is typically used in control and takeover studies, where stockholders are paid a premium for being taken over. Starting some time period before the takeover (often five days before the first announced bid, but sometimes a longer period), the researchers calculate the actual daily stock returns for the target firm and subtract out the expected market returns (usually calculated using the firm’s beta and applying it to overall market movements during the time period under observation).
The excess actual return over the capital asset pricing model-determined expected return market is called an ‘‘abnormal return.’’ The cumulation of the daily abnormal returns over the time period under observation is the CAR. The term CAR(-5, 0) means the CAR calculated from five days before the
announcement to the day of announcement. The CAR(-1, 0) is a control premium, although Mergerstat generally uses the stock price five days before announcement rather than one day before announcement as the denominator in its control premium calculation. However, the CAR for any period other than (-1, 0) is not mathematically equivalent to a control premium.
The change in the value of a firm's foreign currency denominated accounts due to a
change in exchange rates.
Earnings of a firm as reported on its income statement.
Total liabilities exceed total assets. A firm with a negative net worth is insolvent on
The ease and quickness with which assets can be converted to cash.
Money owed to suppliers.
Money owed by customers.
The ratio of net credit sales to average accounts receivable, a measure of how
quickly customers pay their bills.
The average project earnings after taxes and depreciation divided by the average
book value of the investment during its life.
The weighted-average age of all of the firm's outstanding invoices.
Related: pure expectations theory.
Net result of public and private international investment and lending activities.
A single centralized account into which funds collected at regional locations
(lockboxes) are transferred.
Sum of the differences between the expected return on a stock and the
actual return that comes from the release of news to the market.
A requirement that any missed preferred or preference stock dividends be paid
in full before any common dividend payment is made.
Cumulative preferred stock
Preferred stock whose dividends accrue, should the issuer not make timely
dividend payments. Related: non-cumulative preferred stock.
Cumulative probability distribution
A function that shows the probability that the random variable will
attain a value less than or equal to each value that the random variable can take on.
A system of voting for directors of a corporation in which shareholder's total number of
votes is equal to his number of shares held times the number of candidates.
Net flow of goods, services, and unilateral transactions (gifts) between countries.
accounts over which an individual or organization, other than the person in whose
name the account is carried, exercises trading authority or control.
Expectations hypothesis theories
Theories of the term structure of interest rates which include the pure
expectations theory, the liquidity theory of the term structure, and the preferred habitat theory. These theories
hold that each forward rate equals the expected future interest rate for the relevant period. These three theories
differ, however, on whether other factors also affect forward rates, and how.
Expectations theory of forward exchange rates A theory of foreign exchange rates that holds that the
expected future spot foreign exchange rate t periods in the future equals the current t-period forward exchange
Foreign currency translation
The process of restating foreign currency accounts of subsidiaries into the
reporting currency of the parent company in order to prepare consolidated financial statements.
Generally Accepted Accounting Principals (GAAP)
A technical accounting term that encompasses the
conventions, rules, and procedures necessary to define accepted accounting practice at a particular time.
Homogenous expectations assumption
An assumption of Markowitz portfolio construction that investors
have the same expectations with respect to the inputs that are used to derive efficient portfolios: asset returns,
variances, and covariances.
Special accounts where you can save and invest, and the taxes are deferred until money
is withdrawn. These plans are subject to frequent changes in law with respect to the deductibility of
contributions. Withdrawals of tax deferred contributions are taxed as income, including the capital gains from
An agreement between two or more firms to share risk and financing responsibility in
purchasing or underwriting securities.
Local expectations theory
A form of the pure expectations theory which suggests that the returns on bonds
of different maturities will be the same over a short-term investment horizon.
Margin account (Stocks)
A leverageable account in which stocks can be purchased for a combination of
cash and a loan. The loan in the margin account is collateralized by the stock and, if the value of the stock
drops sufficiently, the owner will be asked to either put in more cash, or sell a portion of the stock. Margin
rules are federally regulated, but margin requirements and interest may vary among broker/dealers.
Money market demand account
An account that pays interest based on short-term interest rates.
Non-cumulative preferred stock
Preferred stock whose holders must forgo dividend payments when the
company misses a dividend payment.
Related: cumulative preferred stock
An account carried by one futures commission merchant with another futures commission
merchant in which the transactions of two or more persons are combined and carried in the name of the
originating broker, rather than designated separately. Related: commission house.
Arrangement whereby sales are made with no formal debt contract. The buyer signs a receipt,
and the seller records the sale in the sales ledger.
Method of accounting for a merger in which the acquirer is treated as having purchased
the assets and assumed liabilities of the acquiree, which are all written up or down to their respective fair
market values, the difference between the purchase price and the net assets acquired being attributed to goodwill.
Pure expectations theory
A theory that asserts that the forward rates exclusively represent the expected
future rates. In other words, the entire term structure reflects the markets expectations of future short-term
rates. For example, an increasing sloping term structure implies increasing short-term interest rates. Related:
biased expectations theories
The idea that people rationally anticipate the future and respond to what they see ahead.
Regulatory accounting procedures
accounting principals required by the FHLB that allow S&Ls to elect
annually to defer gains and losses on the sale of assets and amortize these deferrals over the average life of the
A variant of pure expectations theory which suggests that the return that an
investor will realize by rolling over short-term bonds to some investment horizon will be the same as holding
a zero-coupon bond with a maturity that is the same as that investment horizon.
A dealer that does business with retail but that concentrates more on acquiring and financing its own
Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 8
This is a currency translation standard previously in
use by U.S. accounting firms. See: Statement of accounting Standards No. 52.
Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 52
This is the currency translation standard currently
used by U.S. firms. It mandates the use of the current rate method. See: Statement of Financial accounting
Standards No. 8.
account in which the bank takes all of the excess available funds at the close of each business
day and invests them for the firm.
Risk of adverse effects on a firm's financial statements that may arise from changes in exchange rates.
Related: transaction exposure.
Treasury tax and loan account at a bank.
Zero-balance account (ZBA)
A checking account in which zero balance is maintained by transfers of funds
from a master account in an amount only large enough to cover checks presented.
Amounts a company owes to creditors.
Amounts owed to a company by customers that it sold to on credit. Total accounts receivable are usually reduced by an allowance for doubtful accounts.
An explanation or report in financial terms about the transactions of an organization.
The process of satisfying stakeholders in the organization that managers have acted in the best interests of the stakeholders, a result of the stewardship function of managers, which takes place through accounting.
A collection of systems and processes used to record, report and interpret business transactions.
The representation of the double-entry system of accounting such that assets are equal to liabilities plus capital.
The period of time for which financial statements are produced – see also financial year.
Accounting rate of return (ARR)
A method of investment appraisal that measures
the profit generated as a percentage of the
investment – see return on investment.
A set of accounts that summarize the transactions of a business that have been recorded on source documents.
‘Buckets’ within the ledger, part of the accounting system. Each account contains similar transactions (line items) that are used for the production of financial statements. Or commonly used as an abbreviation for financial statements.
A method of accounting in which profit is calculated as the difference between income when it is earned and expenses when they are incurred.
A method of accounting in which profit is calculated as the difference between income
when it is received and expenses when they are paid.
The production of financial statements, primarily for those interested parties who are external to the business.
The production of financial and non-financial information used in planning for the future; making decisions about products, services, prices and what costs to incur; and ensuring that plans are implemented and achieved.
Profit and Loss account
A financial statement measuring the profit or loss of a business – income less expenses – for an accounting period.
Strategic management accounting
The provision and analysis of management accounting data about a business and its competitors, which is of use in the development and monitoring of strategy (Simmonds).
The formula Assets = Liabilities + Equity.
Amounts owed by the company for goods and services that have been received, but have not yet been paid for. Usually accounts payable involves the receipt of an invoice from the company providing the services or goods.
Amounts owed to the company, generally for sales that it has made.
Allowance for doubtful accounts
A contra account related to accounts receivable that represents the amounts that the company expects will not be collected.
An offset to an asset account that reduces the balance of the asset account.
An account that reduces an equity account. An example is Treasury stock.
An account maintained in the general ledger that holds the balance without the detail. The detail is maintained in a subsidiary ledger.
The accounts found on the Balance Sheet; these account balances are carried forward for the lifetime of the company.
The format used for a general ledger page. The name of the account is put on the top line, and a vertical line is dropped from the top line (hence the "T"). Debits are recorded on the left side, and credits are recorded on the right.
The accounts found on the Income Statement and the Statement of Retained Earnings; these accounts are reduced to zero at the end of every accounting period.
A broad, all-inclusive term that refers to the methods and procedures
of financial record keeping by a business (or any entity); it also
refers to the main functions and purposes of record keeping, which are
to assist in the operations of the entity, to provide necessary information
to managers for making decisions and exercising control, to measure
profit, to comply with income and other tax laws, and to prepare financial
An equation that reflects the two-sided nature of a
business entity, assets on the one side and the sources of assets on the
other side (assets = liabilities + owners’ equity). The assets of a business
entity are subject to two types of claims that arise from its two basic
sources of capital—liabilities and owners’ equity. The accounting equation
is the foundation for double-entry bookkeeping, which uses a
scheme for recording changes in these basic types of accounts as either
debits or credits such that the total of accounts with debit balances
equals the total of accounts with credit balances. The accounting equation
also serves as the framework for the statement of financial condition,
or balance sheet, which is one of the three fundamental financial
statements reported by a business.
Short-term, non-interest-bearing liabilities of a business
that arise in the course of its activities and operations from purchases on
credit. A business buys many things on credit, whereby the purchase
cost of goods and services are not paid for immediately. This liability
account records the amounts owed for credit purchases that will be paid
in the short run, which generally means about one month.
Short-term, non-interest-bearing debts owed to a
business by its customers who bought goods and services from the business
on credit. Generally, these debts should be collected within a month
or so. In a balance sheet, this asset is listed immediately after cash.
(Actually the amount of short-term marketable investments, if the business
has any, is listed after cash and before accounts receivable.)
accounts receivable are viewed as a near-cash type of asset that will be
turned into cash in the short run. A business may not collect all of its
accounts receivable. See also bad debts.
accounts receivable turnover ratio
A ratio computed by dividing annual
sales revenue by the year-end balance of accounts receivable. Technically
speaking, to calculate this ratio the amount of annual credit sales should
be divided by the average accounts receivable balance, but this information
is not readily available from external financial statements. For
reporting internally to managers, this ratio should be refined and finetuned
to be as accurate as possible.
Well, frankly, accrual is not a good descriptive
term. Perhaps the best way to begin is to mention that accrual-basis
accounting is much more than cash-basis accounting. Recording only the
cash receipts and cash disbursement of a business would be grossly
inadequate. A business has many assets other than cash, as well as
many liabilities, that must be recorded. Measuring profit for a period as
the difference between cash inflows from sales and cash outflows for
expenses would be wrong, and in fact is not allowed for most businesses
by the income tax law. For management, income tax, and financial
reporting purposes, a business needs a comprehensive record-keeping
system—one that recognizes, records, and reports all the assets and liabilities
of a business. This all-inclusive scope of financial record keeping
is referred to as accrual-basis accounting. Accrual-basis accounting
records sales revenue when sales are made (though cash is received
before or after the sales) and records expenses when costs are incurred
(though cash is paid before or after expenses are recorded). Established
financial reporting standards require that profit for a period
must be recorded using accrual-basis accounting methods. Also, these
authoritative standards require that in reporting its financial condition a
business must use accrual-basis accounting.
See accrual-basis accounting.
generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP)
This important term
refers to the body of authoritative rules for measuring profit and preparing
financial statements that are included in financial reports by a business
to its outside shareowners and lenders. The development of these
guidelines has been evolving for more than 70 years. Congress passed a
law in 1934 that bestowed primary jurisdiction over financial reporting
by publicly owned businesses to the Securities and Exchange Commission
(SEC). But the SEC has largely left the development of GAAP to the
private sector. Presently, the Financial accounting Standards Board is
the primary (but not the only) authoritative body that makes pronouncements
on GAAP. One caution: GAAP are like a movable feast. New rules
are issued fairly frequently, old rules are amended from time to time,
and some rules established years ago are discarded on occasion. Professional
accountants have a heck of time keeping up with GAAP, that’s for
sure. Also, new GAAP rules sometimes have the effect of closing the barn
door after the horse has left. accounting abuses occur, and only then,
after the damage has been done, are new rules issued to prevent such
abuses in the future.
internal accounting controls
Refers to forms used and procedures
established by a business—beyond what would be required for the
record-keeping function of accounting—that are designed to prevent
errors and fraud. Two examples of internal controls are (1) requiring a
second signature by someone higher in the organization to approve a
transaction in excess of a certain dollar amount and (2) giving customers
printed receipts as proof of sale. Other examples of internal
control procedures are restricting entry and exit routes of employees,
requiring all employees to take their vacations and assigning another
person to do their jobs while they are away, surveillance cameras, surprise
counts of cash and inventory, and rotation of duties. Internal controls
should be cost-effective; the cost of a control should be less than
the potential loss that is prevented. The guiding principle for designing
internal accounting controls is to deter and detect errors and dishonesty.
The best internal controls in the world cannot prevent most fraud
by high-level managers who take advantage of their positions of trust
accounting rate of return (ARR)
the rate of earnings obtained on the average capital investment over the life of a capital project; computed as average annual profits divided by average investment; not based on cash flow
Certified Management Accountant (CMA)
a professional designation in the area of management accounting that
recognizes the successful completion of an examination,
acceptable work experience, and continuing education requirements
a discipline that focuses on techniques or
methods for determining the cost of a project, process, or
thing through direct measurement, arbitrary assignment, or
systematic and rational allocation
Cost Accounting Standards Board (CASB)
a body established by Congress in 1970 to promulgate cost accounting
standards for defense contractors and federal agencies; disbanded
in 1980 and reestablished in 1988; it previously issued
pronouncements still carry the weight of law for those
organizations within its jurisdiction
a discipline in which historical, monetary
transactions are analyzed and recorded for use in the
preparation of the financial statements (balance sheet, income
statement, statement of owners’/stockholders’ equity,
and statement of cash flows); it focuses primarily on the
needs of external users (stockholders, creditors, and regulatory
Institute of Management Accountants (IMA)
an organization composed of individuals interested in the field of management accounting; it coordinates the Certified Management
accountant program through its affiliate organization
(the Institute of Certified Management accountants)
judgmental method (of risk adjustment)
an informal method of adjusting for risk that allows the decision maker
to use logic and reason to decide whether a project provides
an acceptable rate of return
a discipline that includes almost
all manipulations of financial information for use by managers
in performing their organizational functions and in
assuring the proper use and handling of an entity’s resources;
it includes the discipline of cost accounting
Management Accounting Guidelines (MAGs)
pronouncements of the Society of Management accountants of
Canada that advocate appropriate practices for specific
management accounting situations
responsibility accounting system
an accounting information system for successively higher-level managers about the performance of segments or subunits under the control
of each specific manager
Society of Management Accountants of Canada
the professional body representing an influential and diverse
group of Certified Management accountants; this body produces
numerous publications that address business management issues
Statement on Management Accounting (SMA)
a pronouncement developed and issued by the Management
accounting Practices Committee of the Institute of Management
accountants; application of these statements is
through voluntary, not legal, compliance
total cost to account for
the sum of the costs in beginning
inventory and the costs of the current period
total units to account for
the sum of the beginning inventory
units and units started during the current period
An alteration in the accounting methodology or estimates used in
the reporting of financial statements, usually requiring discussion in a footnote
attached to the financial statements.
A business for which a separate set of accounting records is being
Acurrent liability on the balance sheet, representing short-term obligations
to pay suppliers.
A current asset on the balance sheet, representing short-term
amounts due from customers who have purchased on account.
The recording of revenue when earned and expenses when
incurred, irrespective of the dates on which the associated cash flows occur.
Chart of accounts
A listing of all accounts used in the general ledger, usually sorted in
order of account number.
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