Revenue Expenditure

Operating cost is an essential criterion for assessing the performance of your firm. Every business incurs operating expenses. It is also known as revenue expenditure. The increase in revenue expenditure is unhealthy for the country’s economy, and if such a situation occurs, prompt action is mandatory to reduce the cost. This expenditure balances revenue and costs. Whenever there is any imbalance in the income statement, consider correcting it. However, not all operating costs fall in the category of revenue expenditure. So, what is revenue expenditure? What does it constitute?

What is Revenue Expenditure?

Technically, revenue expenditure is the company’s spending to buy goods to run its business. It constitutes the cost of running a business, such as the raw material cost and taxes. It keeps an eye on your spending pattern and maintains a healthy relationship with your money. Certain elements aid the firm in choosing business operations as an operating expense, such as business type, regularity and amount spent, and business motives and purposes. It is worth noting that operating expense does not create an asset. For a period of accounting, producing revenue is essential.

Due to their recurring nature, revenue expenditures are often eligible for tax deductions in an accounting period.

Revenue expenditure constitutes maintenance costs. For instance, in the case of machinery, you need to clean, polish, and oil the system to ensure its longevity. Revenue expenses also include repainting and renewal expenses. While most capital expenditures are one-time expenses, revenue expenditures are recurring expenses.

Importance of Revenue Expenditure

Revenue expenditure is an essential factor for many businesses. It ensures the proper working of the firm. Let’s understand the importance of revenue expenditure in an enterprise.

  1. The continuous checkup of revenue expenditure gives you a clear picture of your buying pattern. You can check which charges are mandatory to boost your business.
  2. You can remove unnecessary cost that is ruining your firm’s performance. Reduction of the exorbitant cost will help to boost the company’s performance. Having heaps of expenses put stress on your liquidity.
  3. It analyses which areas need improvement in terms of finance.
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Different Kinds of Revenue Expenditure?

There are primarily two kinds of revenue expenditure:

Direct Expenses

Direct expenses include expenditures related to goods and services. Direct expenditures are all those costs linked with the business throughout the year. An enterprise’s direct costs are those incurred during the conversion of raw materials into finished goods. Direct expenses include power costs during manufacturing, wages paid to employees, legal prices, rentals, shipping-related fees, and freight charges. This type of expense is directly related to your core business activity. Direct expenditures don’t have an impact on the liability of the government. 

Here is the list of direct expenses:

  • Fuel or power consumption is one of the direct expenses.
  • Inward freight
  • Custom duty present in Import.
  • The manufacturing charges.
  • The Wages and Salaries of the employees fall under direct expenses.
  • All the expenses and insurance of a factory are also direct.
  • The inward dock charges fall under direct expenses.
  • The charges for heating and lighting.
  • The royalty on the product.
  • The direct labour or materials.

Indirect Expenses

Another significant kind of revenue expense is indirect expenditure. The indirect cost comes into the picture when finished goods or services get distributed. 

Some indirect expenses include taxes, employee salaries, depreciation, and interest. The cost like repair and maintenance costs is there in indirect costs. Although these expenses are not directly related to the final products, they are essential for the proper operation of the plant, which facilitates the suitable function of the business. This type of cost does not constitute a cost object.

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Here is the list of indirect expenses:

  • The advertisement cost
  • Expenses on Entertainment.
  • Advertisement costs.
  • Staff welfare expenditures
  • The telephone bill
  • Office rent
  • Distributive expenses
  • Discount of debtors
  • Provision for bad debt.
  • Legal charges and low fees
  • Repair and Renewals
  • Postage and telegram charges
  • Interest on capital

How to Calculate Revenue Expenditure?

The calculation of revenue expenditure is simple. Its details get captured in the income statement.

The cost of goods sold (COGS) minus the overall income and sum it up with the price of goods sold. COGS includes all the direct expenses like fuel charges, customs duty on Imports, and direct labour.

Comparison between Capital Expenditure and Revenue Expenditure

Capital and revenue expenditure is equally essential. They have specific characteristics. Let’s dive into the detailed comparison of capital and revenue expenditure:

  • Revenue Expenditure is the daily expenses of a firm that maintains the good health of your business. Capital Expenditure includes the costs of acquiring capital.
  • Revenue expenditure is for a short period, while capital expenditure is long term.
  • Revenue expenditure is on the Income statement but not the balance sheet or cash flow statement. Capital Expenditure is on the cash flow statement and in the Balance sheet.
  • Revenue expense is recurrent, while capital expenditure is non-recurrent.
  • Depreciation is free from Revenue expense but present in capital expense.

Shortcomings of Revenue Expenditure

Some drawbacks of revenue expenditure are as follows:

  • The perks of revenue are only for one accounting period.
  • Revenue expenditure can predict the present financial health but not the future.
  • The results of the revenue expenditure are sometimes inaccurate.
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Revenue expenditure is a crucial indicator of the performance of a business. Any business will face daily revenue expenditure. It helps to analyse the performance and take steps accordingly. Note that even though revenue expenditure does not directly boost profit, it is essential is the smooth running of daily operations.


1. What is the purpose of Revenue Expenditure?

Revenue expenditure aims to provide the short-term operational costs of a business.

2. What are the substantial items of revenue expenditures?

The substantial items of revenue expenditure are as follows:

  • Salaries and wages, 
  • Maintenance costs
  • Rent
  • Freight charges.
  • Pensions
  • Subsidies

3. What are the two main components of revenue expenditure?

The two main components are Employees’ salaries and Pensions

4. What are the limitations of revenue expenditure?

The limitations of revenue expenditure are as follows:

  • Results are sometimes wrong.
  • It is short-term and does not provide any insights into the future standing of the business.

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