ASC 842 Calculation Example: Understanding Lease Accounting Standards

Table of contents
  1. Understanding ASC 842 Calculations
  2. Potential Impacts and Considerations
  3. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
  4. Reflection

Are you trying to wrap your head around ASC 842 calculations? Lease accounting standards can be complex and challenging to understand, but fear not! In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through an example of ASC 842 calculation to help you grasp the concepts and processes involved. By the end of this article, you will have a solid understanding of how to perform ASC 842 calculations and comply with the lease accounting standards.

Let's dive into the intricacies of ASC 842 calculations and demystify the world of lease accounting.

Understanding ASC 842 Calculations

ASC 842, the new lease accounting standard issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), requires lessees to recognize most leases on their balance sheets. This means that lessees must now recognize assets and liabilities for the rights and obligations created by leases, thereby changing how leases are reported in financial statements. The standard aims to increase transparency and comparability among organizations by bringing most leases on-balance sheet for lessees.

ASC 842 calculations involve the determination of lease liabilities and right-of-use assets, as well as the subsequent recognition of interest expense and depreciation expense. The calculations require careful consideration of lease terms, discount rates, initial direct costs, and other pertinent factors.

Components of ASC 842 Calculations

ASC 842 calculations consist of several key components, each of which contributes to the overall process of recognizing lease liabilities and right-of-use assets. These components include:

  • Lease Term
  • Discount Rate
  • Lease Payments
  • Initial Direct Costs
  • Residual Value

Example of ASC 842 Calculation

Let's consider an example to illustrate the ASC 842 calculation process. Suppose Company ABC enters into a lease agreement to lease a piece of equipment for a period of five years. The lease payments are structured as follows: $10,000 at the beginning of each year, for a total of five payments. The discount rate implicit in the lease is determined to be 5%.

To calculate the lease liability and right-of-use asset under ASC 842, Company ABC would follow these steps:

  1. Determine the Present Value of Lease Payments
  2. Recognize the Right-of-Use Asset and Lease Liability
  3. Recognize Interest Expense and Depreciation Expense

Here’s how the calculation would unfold:

Step 1: Determine the Present Value of Lease Payments

Company ABC would calculate the present value of the lease payments using the discount rate of 5% and the lease term of five years. The present value of the lease payments is determined to be $43,691.

Step 2: Recognize the Right-of-Use Asset and Lease Liability

Company ABC would recognize a right-of-use asset and lease liability on the balance sheet. The right-of-use asset and lease liability are both recognized at the present value of the lease payments, which is $43,691 in this case.

Step 3: Recognize Interest Expense and Depreciation Expense

Company ABC would recognize interest expense on the lease liability and depreciation expense on the right-of-use asset over the lease term. The interest and depreciation expenses for each period would be calculated based on the carrying amount of the lease liability and right-of-use asset, respectively.

Potential Impacts and Considerations

ASC 842 calculations can have significant impacts on an organization’s financial statements and key financial metrics. By bringing most leases onto the balance sheet, organizations may experience changes in financial ratios, debt covenants, and other performance indicators. It is crucial for companies to carefully assess the implications of ASC 842 on their financial reporting and disclosures.

Potential impacts of ASC 842 calculations may include:

  • Changes in Debt-to-Equity Ratios
  • Impact on Key Performance Indicators
  • Enhanced Transparency and Disclosure
  • Financial Statement Presentation Changes

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: How do I determine the discount rate for ASC 842 calculations?

A: The discount rate used in ASC 842 calculations is typically the rate implicit in the lease if readily determinable. If the implicit rate is not readily determinable, the lessee should use its incremental borrowing rate.

Q: What are the key considerations when performing ASC 842 calculations?

A: Key considerations include accurately determining the lease term, discount rate, lease payments, initial direct costs, and residual value. Additionally, assessing the impacts of the calculations on financial statements and disclosures is critical.

Q: Are there any exceptions to the ASC 842 lease accounting standard?

A: Certain short-term leases (those with a lease term of 12 months or less) and leases of low-value assets are exempt from the recognition and measurement requirements of ASC 842.


In conclusion, ASC 842 calculations play a pivotal role in lease accounting, impacting how leases are recognized, measured, and disclosed in financial statements. Understanding the intricacies of ASC 842 calculations is essential for compliance with the lease accounting standards and for providing transparent and comparable financial information to users of financial statements.

As organizations navigate the complexities of ASC 842, it is imperative to stay abreast of updates and interpretations related to the standard, and to continuously assess the implications of lease accounting changes on financial reporting.

By mastering ASC 842 calculations, organizations can effectively navigate the evolving landscape of lease accounting and strive for accurate and transparent financial reporting practices.

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