Unit Cost Meaning
Unit Cost is the total cost (fixed as well as variable) incurred by the company to produce, store and sell one unit of a product or service. This concept is most commonly used in the manufacturing industry and is calculated by adding fixed and variable expense and dividing it with the total number of units produced.
The unit cost of a product is calculated by adding the total variable cost related to the production of the goods as well as a fixed cost related to the production and dividing the total cost of production by the number of units produced. When the company is aware of its cost of production, it can decide its pricing accordingly by keeping a reasonable margin for profit. Thus, it gives the company a fair idea of how to make decisions with respect to price and analyze its current cost structure. If the cost of the product is high than the usual, then the company shall analyze the root cause for the same and take corrective action.
Examples of Unit Cost
A company had incurred the following expenses during the year on its production and produced 10,000 units of the final product.
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- = $8
A company had provided the details of expenses incurred during the year on the production of 1,000 units of product.
Variable Cost = Raw Material Cost + Wages
- = $5,000 + $8,000
- = $13,000
Fixed Cost = Factory Rent + Equipment Rent
- = $10,000 + $1,000
- = $24
- It helps the management in taking pricing decisions since the unit cost works as a base.
- It indicates the breakup point, below which the company shall not sell its product to avoid losses.
- It helps track and monitor the costs that are being incurred by the company.
- A comparison can be made using cost sheets of two periods to analyze the trend in change of costs to find out possible reasons for the same.
- This costing is helpful for filing tenders since prices can be quoted only when the cost is known.
- It is useful for manufacturing industries and may not be useful for services industries.
- For those manufacturing companies that produce different kinds of products, it may be difficult to allocate some costs to every product and calculation may not be possible.
- The information-based for calculation of unit costing is of the previous period, for which expense is already incurred. The same might not be useful if prices of inputs to a product are of fluctuating nature.
- It is not a sufficient tool for supervision and control over costs.
This has been a guide to Unit Cost and its Meaning. Here we discuss its formula, calculation along with examples, advantages, and disadvantages. You may learn more about financing from the following articles –