Definitions of Terms


In general, the systematic allocation of the cost of a long-term asset over its useful economic life; the term is also used specifically to define the allocation process for intangible assets.

Carrying amount

The amount at which an asset is presented on the balance sheet, which is its cost (or other allowable basis), net of any accumulated depreciation and impairment losses.

Cash generating unit

The smallest identifiable group of assets that generates cash inflows from continuing use, largely independent of the cash inflows associated with other assets or groups of assets.

Corporate assets

Assets, excluding goodwill, that contribute to future cash flows of both the cash generating unit under review for impairment and other cash generating units.


Amount of cash or cash equivalent paid or the fair value of other consideration given to acquire or construct an asset.

Depreciable amount

Cost of an asset or the other amount that has been substituted for cost, less the residual value of the asset.


Systematic and rational allocation of the depreciable amount of an asset over its economic life.


The application of research findings or other knowledge to a plan or design for the production of new or substantially improved materials, devices, products, processes, systems, or services prior to commencement of commercial production or use. This should be distinguished from research.

Fair value

Amount that would be obtained for an asset in an arm's-length exchange transaction between knowledgeable willing parties.


The excess of the cost of a business combination accounted for as an acquisition over the fair value of the net assets thereof, to be amortized over its useful economic life that, as a rebuttable presumption, is no greater than twenty years.

Impairment loss

The excess of the carrying amount of an asset over its recoverable amount.

Intangible assets

Nonmonetary assets without physical substance that are held for use in the production or supply of goods or services or for rental to others, or for administrative purposes, which are identifiable and are controlled by the enterprise as a result of past events, and from which future economic benefits are expected to flow.

Monetary assets

Assets whose amounts are fixed in terms of units of currency. Examples are cash, accounts receivable, and notes receivable.

Net selling price

The amount which could be realized from the sale of an asset by means of an arm's-length transaction, less costs of disposal.

Nonmonetary transactions

Exchanges and nonreciprocal transfers that involve little or no monetary assets or liabilities.

Nonreciprocal transfer

Transfer of assets or services in one direction, either from an enterprise to its owners or another entity, or from owners or another entity to the enterprise. An enterprise's reacquisition of its outstanding stock is a nonreciprocal transfer.

Recoverable amount

The greater of an asset's net selling price or its value in use.


The original and planned investigation undertaken with the prospect of gaining new scientific or technical knowledge and understanding. This should be distinguished from development.

Residual value

Estimated amount expected to be obtained on ultimate disposition of the asset after its useful life has ended, net of estimated costs of disposal.

Useful life

Period over which an asset will be employed in a productive capacity, as measured either by the time over which it is expected to be used, or the number of production units expected to be obtained from the asset by the enterprise.

Wiley Ias 2003(c) Interpretation and Application of International Accounting Standards
WILEY IAS 2003: Interpretation and Application of International Accounting Standards
ISBN: 0471227366
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2005
Pages: 147 © 2008-2017.
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