Opening Stock

What is Opening Stock?

Opening Stock can be described as the initial quantity of any product/ goods held by an organization during the start of any financial year or accounting period and is equal to the closing stock of previous accounting period valued on the basis of suitable accounting norms depending on the nature of business.

Types of Opening Stock

Depending on the nature of the business carried by an organization, inventory types will also vary. Example inventory of a trader will be different than the inventory of a manufacturing organization or from a service providing organization. However, in consolidated form, they can be divided into the following types:


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The formula for Calculating Opening Stock

Depending on the variety of data available, It can be calculated on a different basis. some formulas are presented below:

#1 – When different types of opening stock are mentioned.

Opening Stock Formula = Raw Material Cost + Work in Progress Values + Finished Goods Cost

#2 – When current year closing stock is given along with sales and cost of goods sold and gross profitGross ProfitGross Profit shows the earnings of the business entity from its core business activity i.e. the profit of the company that is arrived after deducting all the direct expenses like raw material cost, labor cost, etc. from the direct income generated from the sale of its goods and more figures:

Examples of Opening Stock

Now let us understand the following examples.

You can download this Opening Stock Excel Template here – Opening Stock Excel Template

Example #1

Mr. Mark, manufacturer manufacturing shirts, gives the following details of stock held as on 01/01/2019. Based on the available data, you are required to calculate opening stock value with classification as RM, WIP, FG:

  • Raw Cotton: $5000
  • Thread: $2000
  • Colours: $3000
  • Half Stiched Shirts: $20,000
  • Stiched but not Coloured Shirts: $15,000
  • Completed Shirts: $48000

Note: Completed shirts given are at sales value with a gross margin of 20% on the cost price.


Based on available data Opening stock will be calculated as follows: –

Example 1.1

Opening inventory = 10000 + 35000 + 40000 = 85000

Note: Since completed shirts (FG) were stated at the sales price of $48,000. This price had a margin of 20% on cost, therefore reduced valuation by diving from 120% to ascertain cost price.

Example #2

Mark Inc., a cloth manufacturing industry, gives the following details. You are required to calculate the opening stock value as on 01/01/2018:

Opening Stock Example 2


Opening stock will be calculated as follows:

Opening Stock Formula = Net Sales – Purchases – Gross Margin + Closing Stock
Example 2.1

Opening Inventory = 1250000 – 800000 – 250000 -+ 100000 = 100000


Some of the advantages are as follows:

  • Holding opening stock can help an organization to meet its fluctuating market demands and can cater to the needs of its customers.
  • It helps an organization to ensure better services/supply to its customers and hence increases customer satisfaction.
  • The efficient supply of raw material ensures smooth operations without hampering production.

Limitations of Opening Stock

Holding opening stock does have advantages, but at the same time there are many disadvantages as follows: –

Important Points


Opening Stock can be defined as a number of goods held by an organization at the initiation of any accounting periodAny Accounting PeriodAccounting Period refers to the period in which all financial transactions are recorded and financial statements are prepared. This might be quarterly, semi-annually, or annually, depending on the period for which you want to create the financial statements to be presented to investors so that they can track and compare the company's overall more. They can be categorized as raw materials, work in progress and finished goods, etc. Based on the availability of data, opening inventory can be calculated with the help of different formulas. Holding inventory helps an organization to cater to the fluctuating needs of its customers but also has the cost of holding. Nowadays, there are various amendments taking place in the calculation, accounting, and disclosure of opening stock.

This has been a guide to what is opening stock and its meaning. Here we discuss its formula, 3 types of opening stock (Raw material, work in progress, finished goods) along with examples, advantages & disadvantages. You may learn more about accounting basics from the following articles –