Thursday, 12 November 2009

Valuing fixed properties at HC before they are sold does not destroy their real values

The real values of fixed properties are not destroyed by SA accountants when they value these fixed assets at their original nominal HC values before the date that they are actually exchanged during low inflation. They would be valued at their current market values on the date of exchange in an open economy. During hyperinflation all variable items are required to be valued in units of constant purchasing power with reference to the CPI or a hard currency parallel rate – normally the US Dollar parallel rate.

This is not the case with reported constant items never maintained under the HC paradigm. Accountants unknowingly destroy the real values of reported constant items never maintained at a rate equal to the rate of inflation in a low inflationary environment with their stable measuring unit assumption under HCA.

Variable items´ real values are not being unknowingly destroyed by SA accountants as a result of their implementation of IFRS or SA GAAP since variable items exist independently of how we value them. They can value a variable item in the balance sheet at its HC 50 years ago, but, when it is sold in the market today, the variable item would be transacted at the current market price. The real values of variable items are also not being destroyed uniformly at, e.g., a rate equal to the inflation rate because of valuing them at original nominal HC. Inflation, per se, has no effect on the real values of variable items on a primary valuation basis.

Where real losses are made in dealing with variable items in SA, these losses are the result of supply and demand or business and private decisions, e.g. selling at a bad price, obsolescence, stock market crashes, credit crunches, etc. They do not result from the implementation by SA accountants of the HC accounting model.

Kindest regards,

Nicolaas Smith

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