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French Equivalent: Amortissement - SCN

Depreciation as usually calculated in business accounts is a method of allocating the costs of past expenditures on fixed assets over subsequent accounting periods.

Note that the depreciation methods favoured in business accounting and those prescribed by tax authorities almost invariably deviate from the concept of consumption of fixed capital employed in the SNA and so the term “consumption of fixed capital” is used in the SNA to distinguish it from “depreciation” as typically measured in business accounts.

However, as it is defined in the SNA, consumption of fixed capital is in fact identical with depreciation as this term is widely used in the economic literature. Therefore in some cases the two terms can be used interchangeably, if it is clear that one is referring to the concept understood by economists and not depreciation as measured by commercial accountants.

Source Publication:
SNA 1.62, 3.77 and 6.183.

Cross References:
Depreciation - OECD


Version Indicator: SNA

Statistical Theme: National accounts

Created on Tuesday, September 25, 2001

Last updated on Monday, March 3, 2003