This course covers the IMA material in much more depth. There will be other companion couses covering every section of the Part 1 exam.The same learning outcomes are covered for the section on Budgeting and Planning but the information is presented in a different fashion.
This course will further your preparation for the exam. Planning. Budgeting and Forecasting section of Part 1 Exam multiple-choice questions will be 30% of the one hundred multiple choice questions on the exam.
Budgeting and financial forecasting are tools that companies use to establish a plan for where management wants to take the company—budgeting—and whether it is heading in the right direction—financial forecasting.
Although budgeting and financial forecasting are often used together, distinct differences exist between the two concepts. Budgeting quantifies the expectation of revenues that a business wants to achieve for a future period, whereas financial forecasting estimates the amount of revenue or income that will be achieved in a future period.
•Budgeting is the financial direction of where management wants to take the company, helping quantify the expectation of revenues that a business wants to achieve for a future period,
•Financial forecasting tells whether the company is headed in the right direction, estimating the amount of revenue and income that will be achieved in the future.
•Budgeting creates a baseline to compare actual results to determine how the results vary from the expected performance.
•Financial forecasting is used to determine how companies should allocate their budgets for a future period, but unlike budgeting, financial forecasting does not analyze the variance between financial forecasts and actual performance.
A budget is an outline of expectations for what a company wants to achieve for a particular period, usually one year. Characteristics of budgeting include:
•Estimates of revenues and expenses.
•Expected cash flows.
•Expected debt reduction.
•A budget is compared to actual results to calculate the variances between the two figures.
Budgeting represents a company’s financial position, cash flow, and goals. A company’s budget is usually re-evaluated periodically, usually once per fiscal year, depending on how management wants to update the information. Budgeting creates a baseline to compare actual results to determine how the results vary from the expected performance.
While most budgets are created for an entire year, that is not a hard-and-fast rule. For some companies, management may need to be flexible and allow the budget to be adjusted throughout the year as business conditions change.
Financial forecasting estimates a company’s future financial outcomes by examining historical data. Financial forecasting allows management teams to anticipate results based on previous financial data. Characteristics of financial forecasting include:
•Used to determine how companies should allocate their budgets for a future period. Unlike budgeting, financial forecasting does not analyze the variance between financial forecasts and actual performance.
•Regularly updated, perhaps monthly or quarterly, when there is a change in operations, inventory, and business plan.
•Can be created for both short-term and long-term. For example, a company might have quarterly forecasts for revenue. If a customer is lost to the competition, revenue forecasts might need to be updated.
•A management team can use financial forecasting and take immediate action based on the forecasted data.