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How do you account for bartering transactions?

Rose Robbins's Profile

accounting for barter transactionsDo you even have to track these kinds of transactions? If so, how do you go about recording them? And how will they affect our bottom line?

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Topic Expert
Anonymous User
Title: CFO
Company: Local Government Agency
(CFO, Local Government Agency) |

Interesting.

We are a public agency. We do not file income taxes.

Our marketing department engages in cross promotional advertising activities with other public (municipalities) and quasi-public (chambers of commerce events) agencies.

If this was a private or publically held entity, I'd have concerned myself with the accounting for such exchanges. But, because we aren't I haven't concerned myself with it.

Our auditors are aware of the transactions but have never even mentioned it.

Which brings me to a related question: How does one account for credit card redemption points?

We have those too and, I've used them to procure some small, fixed assets for our use like printers.

I've also used them obtain gift cards which were distributed to every employee as a holiday gift.

It was the only time I didn't include the value of the gift card in the employee's gross taxable compensation, even though I knew it was definitively subject to income tax and not excludable.

Why?

Because it would have been a pain in the arse to account for the transaction that got us the gift cards from the credit card agency and then expense & report the "gift" to each employee for income tax purposes. So, the transactions remained off book.

Sometimes, materiality matters and, you just have to let something go. :-)

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