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Financial Reports > Rounding

Rounding

I should start with what the differences are between scaling and rounding. Scaling is making the number appear as thousands, or millions. For example, 1,234,567 shown in thousands would be 1,234,000. What to do with the 567 is rounding. Typically, people will “round up” for this, so 1,234,567 scaled to thousands and rounded would be displayed as 1,235. The problem this can cause is that numbers scaled and rounded in a report will create reports that might not foot. If you have rounded numbers, you might want to consider how to deal with this.

Before I dig into rounding in reports, I should explain that this is just math. Most people who are looking at a financial report understand that when they are looking at them. When a report says “in millions,” they know there must be some rounding somewhere. I strongly believe the purpose of the reports should be to provide as much information as possible. That said, when you push rounding into a line on the report somewhere, you are making one line of the report wrong. Now some people are fine with that because they view the line they will plug rounding into not as valuable a line of information, like “other expenses.”


  

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