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Supplies are accounting materials necessary for the production consumed are of no part of the product to be, and in the technology in machinery or equipment to heat are used and pressure transfer or heat generation.


In cost accounting, operating materials are assigned to materials like raw materials and auxiliary materials. They are consumed during production or in other operational areas, but do not become a substantial part of the product. While raw materials go into a product (e.g. glass in a motor vehicle), operating materials are consumed for production purposes (production energy) or are used for operational readiness. Since they can be assigned to the consumer goods , they count to the repetition factors .

In accounting , operating materials are material that is part of the current assets in the balance sheet and does not become a direct component of the products during production . The boundaries between raw, auxiliary and operating materials are fluid. Goods that are raw materials in one company can be auxiliary materials in another.


A distinction must be made between operating materials according to whether they are used for operational readiness or indirect production.

With the exception of the fuel, operating materials are part of the machines or systems.

The consumption of operating materials can be clearly assigned to operational readiness or production. He therefore results in both fixed costs (energy costs by mode) as well as variable costs (production energy), mostly the cost of supplies for economic reasons are the total cost variable overheads associated.


In technology, technical substances are divided into materials and operating materials (more precisely also referred to as technical operating materials). Sometimes the operating materials are counted among the materials. With the exception of the fuel, the technical operating materials are part of the machines or systems and are of direct technical importance in terms of their operating behavior. Operating materials as technical materials are materials that are mainly used in the machine (system) in a more or less fluid state for heat and pressure transfer or heat generation, such as lubricants, coolants, refrigerants and fuels.


The operating materials not used on the balance sheet date are sold in accordance with § 266 bs. 2 BI no. 1 HGB activated and therefore form as inventory a portion of the working capital. According to Section 253 (4) of the German Commercial Code (HGB), this is subject to the strict lower value principle , in which the acquisition or production costs or the lower stock exchange or market price are used as a basis for the valuation . An assessment using the fixed value method is possible if similar operating materials can be combined. The evaluation of the operating materials is also subject to the consumption sequence procedure, in which the chronological sequence between storage and production is simulated.

Individual evidence

  1. Sven Fischbach, Fundamentals of Cost Accounting , 2013, p. 34
  2. ^ Wilhelm Sibrand-Scheel, Technische Betriebsstoffe , 4th edition, Leipzig, 1968. 224 pp.
  3. Klaus Bertram, Haufe HGB Commentary , 2009, p. 138