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The process of adapting to a new culture.


Abandonment option

A contract clause that provides the grantor with the option of withdrawing from an investment prior to the completion of contractual obligations contract termination date.


Absorbed account

An account that has been combined with other interrelated accounts during the preparation of a company’s financial statement.


Absorbed costs

The indirect costs connected with manufacturing a particular product (i.e., insurance, taxes, etc.).


Absorption costing

An accounting method whereby all costs are immersed and charged into a single unit of production or operation within a business.

Accelerated depreciation

A method used for calculating the depreciation of assets in a manner that assumes assets depreciate quicker during the first few years of being acquired.



The responsibility placed on an individual or group for their own or others actions, conduct, performance, projects, etc.


Accountant’s letter

A written document prepared by an independent accountant used to provide a professional opinion regarding the scope and validity of financial data being reported on financial statements.

Accounting exposure

A term used to refer to changes in the value of a company’s foreign currency accounts resulting from fluctuations in foreign exchange rates.

Accounting period

The period of time in which businesses prepare internal accounts for the purpose of monitoring progress on a weekly, monthly or quarterly basis.


Accounts payable

The debt a company is liable for and must pay off to suppliers or vendors.


Accredited investor

An individual investor whose wealth or income exceeds a specific amount.


A term used to describe the growth a businesses experiences through the addition or purchase of value-added services or products.



Charges that have not been paid by the end of an accounting period but are included in the accounting results for the period.

Accounting earnings

The earnings reported on a company’s income statement.


Accounting insolvency

Defined as a company’s total liabilities exceeding its total assets.


Acid test

A rigid test used to measure the reliability or value of a particular item or product.


Accrual-basis accounting

An accounting system that enters income and expenses into the books at the time of the contract instead of when an expense is incurred or payment has been received.


Accrued expenses

Expenses that have been secured but not yet paid for.

Accrued income

Earned income that has not yet been received.

Accrued interest

The amount of interest that is earned by an investment since subsequent interest payments.


Accumulated depreciation

The collective depreciation of an asset claimed as an expense since the asset was obtained.



The process of acquiring control of another corporation, by purchase or stock exchange.


Acquiescence bias

The bias created when respondents in a survey answer positively to two equally conflicting questions.


Acquisition accounting

The standard accounting procedure followed when two companies merge.


Acquisition rate

A metric used to measure the ability of a marketing program to bring in new business.


Action research

Research that allows the researcher to take an active role as an involved participant in the process of planning and implementing changes.


Activity-based budgeting

The process of determining activities incurred within a company, the relationships between them and how much of the company’s total budget should be allocated to each activity.


Activity-based costing

A system used for calculating the costs incurred by a company by focusing on actual costs of individual products or services and providing an estimate of the costs associated with individual products or services.



Earnings and expenses that have actually transpired versus only being projected.



A statistician who calculates probable lengths of life so that insurance premiums charged for a variety of risks can be correctly established.


Ad hoc research

A tem used to describe research conducted in response to a specific, one-time-only need.

Adjusted book value

A company’s worth in terms of the current market value of its assets and liabilities.


Adjusted gross income (AGI)

Defined as the amount of income received from all sources that is taxable (i.e. wages, salaries, tips, taxable interest, ordinary dividends, taxable refunds, credits, or offsets of state and local income taxes, alimony received, business income or loss, capital gains or losses, other gains or losses, taxable distributions, taxable pensions and annuities, unemployment compensation, social security benefits, and other income minus specific deductions.)


Advance corporation tax

The tax paid by a company that is equivalent to the percentage of the company’s dividends or other dissemination of profit to shareholders.


Advertising expenditure

The amount of money spent by a company for advertising its products or services.


Advisory committee

A group or panel of internal or external members with no decision making authority, assembled to identify and discuss specific issues and make recommendations.



A business that is owned or controlled by another company or group that owns a minority of the voting stock of the other company.


Affirmative action (AA)

Any program, policy or procedure that an employer implements in order to correct past discrimination and prevent current and future discrimination within the workplace.


After-acquired evidence

Used in litigation of employment discrimination disputes, after-acquired evidence is evidence that the employer discovers after it has already discharged an employee, which proves that even if the discharge in question is found to be illegal, the employer would have dismissed the employee anyway in light of discovering the misconduct.


After-hours trading

Buying or selling stock outside of New York Stock Exchange standard trading hours.


Aftermarket performance

The process of measuring the appreciation or depreciation of an initial public offering by tracking its performance based on its closing price during the first day.


Aftermarket trading

Trading in an initial public offering prior to an offering.



Income from which taxes have already been deducted.


Aged debt

A tern used to describe any debt that has become overdue. Typically, debts that are in arrears by 30 days or more.


Aggregate demand

The total of all expenditures in an economy that makes up its gross domestic product (i.e., consumer spending on goods and services, investments in capital stocks and government spending).


Aggregate income

The sum total of all incomes in an economy during a given period of time.


Aggregate supply

The total amount of all the goods and services in an economy.


Alternative worksite

Any location than the employer’s physical worksite where employees are allowed to perform their jobs.



The process of bringing various elements together to move in the same direction.

Alien Tort Claims Act (ATCA)

A U.S. statute first enacted in 1789 that allows cases involving the violation of international law against aliens to be heard in U.S. federal court.


The consolidation of one or more companies such as with a merger.

American Stock Exchange (AMEX)

An organization committed to providing a top-quality marketplace for its members and investors by conducting trading through advanced centralized specialist systems.


A method of debt reduction whereby a borrower pays off a portion of a loan’s interest and principal periodically.


Assessments performed by an organization to provide a basis for decision making.

Analysis of variance

A statistical method used to determine whether a relationship exists among two or more variables by formulating concurrent comparisons of the variables.


Analytical thinking

The ability to analyze facts, generate a comparison and draw correct inferences or conclusions from available information.



The art and science of teaching adults.


Anorexic organization

A term used to describe a company that has become so small as a result of downsizing or other business restructuring that it has lost its strength and ability to compete effectively.


Annual percentage rate (APR)

The percentage rate charged by lending institutions for various types of loans.


Annual percentage yield (APY)

The average amount of monthly interest paid to investors over a one- year period, expressed as a percentage.



A particular amount of income paid in either yearly, at other recurring intervals or in a lump sum.


Antitrust and fair trade legislation

Legislation enacted to prohibit acquisition of monopoly power through the use of unjust, unethical, manipulative, dishonest or corrupt business practices.


Apparent authority

The appearance that an individual has the authority or power to act as an organization’s agent even though the organization has bestowed no such authority or power to that individual.


Application service provider (ASP)

Third-party organizations that deliver software applications and related services over the Internet, allowing an organization to outsource some or all of its information technology needs.



Money that has been set aside and allocated for a specific function.



The concurrent purchase and sale of two or more closely related securities in different markets in order to take advantage of price differences.


Articles of incorporation

A company’s charter that spells out the name, basic purpose, incorporators, amount and types of stock that may be issued, and any special characteristics, such as being nonprofit. Each state has its own system of approval of articles of incorporation, and this approval is usually handled by the state’s Secretary of State.

Ascriptive culture

A culture where status is accorded based on birth and position.


Asset allocation

The process of dividing funds between different types of assets (cash, stocks, bonds and real estate).



The items owned by a company (i.e., stocks, equipment, real estate, etc.) declared on the basis of initial purchase price instead of current market value.



The process of being fully absorbed and incorporated into a culture.



A systematic assessment of a company’s management, finances, operations, controls and scope in which policies and procedures are carried out.


Audit trail

A record depicting all the chronological stages of a particular transaction.



A mathematical average of all of the data points in a set calculated by adding together all the data and then dividing the total results by the specific number of data points used.


Average deviation

A statistical term referring to the average of the deviation, taken from some fixed value, usually the mathematical mean of the data.



The use of automatic equipment, so that entire procedures can be automatically controlled with little to no intervention from a person.

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