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Interpreting Accounts Receivable and Its Footnote Disclosure

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Following is the current asset section from the ABC, Inc. balance sheet

As of December 31 ($000s) 2010 2009 2008

Cash and cash equivalents 313454 459871 396290
Accounts receivable (less allowances
for doubt accounts of $24,552, $25,850
and $26,481 respectively) 762895 624910 589416
Inventories---net 991577 889679 1009932
Prepaid expenses and other assets 87125 88364 73359
Deferred income statement 44627 42023 52556
Prepaid income taxes 38393 26668 22556
Total Current Assets 2238071 2131515 2144109

ABC, Inc. reports the following footnote relating to its receivables
As of December 31 ($000s) 2010 2009 2008

Balance at beginning of period 25850 26481 25830
Provision for uncollectable accounts 6718 10748 12924
Write--off of uncollectable accounts, less recoveries -8302 -12254 -11501
Foreign currency translation impact 286 875 -772
Balance at end of period 24552 25850 26481

a. What amount do customers owe ABC at each of the year-ends 2008 through 2010?
b. What percentage of those accounts receivable on a does ABC feel are uncollectable? (Hint: prepare of accounts = Allowance for uncollectable accounts / Gross accounts receivable).
c. What amount of bad debts expense did ABC report in its income statement for each of the years 2008 through 2010?
d. Explain the changes in the balance of the allowance for uncollectable accounts since 2008. Specifically, did the allowance increase or decrease as a percentage of gross accounts receivable, and why?
e. If ABC had kept its 2010 allowance for uncollectable accounts at the same percentage of gross accounts receivable as it was in 2008, by what amount would its profit have changed (ignore taxes)? Explain
f. Overall, what is your assessment of ABC's allowance for uncollectable accounts and the related 2010, 2009, 2008, respectively, and the net earnings attributable to the company were $510,865, $430,466 and $475,355 ($ 000s).

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Solution Summary

Your tutorial, includes computations of gross accounts receivable and a schedule showing the activity in the allowance for doubtful accounts is attached in Excel. Click in cells to see calculations. Discussion and instructional notes are included.