Tax Fairness and Tax Efficiency

Tax Fairness and Tax Efficiency

A tax is a financial charge or a levy that is imposed to a taxpayer by an organization or state. Tax can be levied directly or indirectly, and can be paid in the form of money or its labor equivalent. The paper is going to focus on methods of levying a tax to students from their final examination. The tax paid should be in the form of points from the student’s average score. The purpose of this study is to find the fairest way of collecting tax from the class. therefore, focusing on tax fairness and tax efficiency.

Tax Base, Rate and Structure

Tax base is the assessed value of a set of assets, income streams or investments, which are subject to taxation. Therefore, tax must be imposed on things which have a tax base. The property tax base of the students score is the scores value. An efficient tax system should have a tax rate. This describes the burden ratio which is expressed as a percentage which a student is taxed. This study is focused to incorporate a fair tax rate to the scores of the students which will enhance equity in the tax system. The structure of this tax system is on the basis of points from the average score of each student. This structure is suitable since the students do not have a source of income. This will help the students work hard to reach their targets after tax hence increase competition. For healthy competition to be effective, a fair method of collecting taxes should be imposed. The study is going to focus on the three methods of levying taxes in order to come up with the efficient method that should be applicable in the class.

Progressive Tax

This is a tax that is imposed as a percentage of the student’s final examination grade. This means that amount of tax increases as the taxable base amount increases.  A progressive tax increases the tax burden of the individuals who have the highest scores. This tax system is not suitable in the class since it would decrease the morale of the students to work hard. Students will high scores are deducted many points relative to students will low scores. This method is not fair to the hardworking students, hence should not be applicable in class.

tax fairness and tax efficiency
tax fairness and tax efficiency

Proportional Tax

This is a method of taxation imposed with a fixed tax rate. In other words, it is a flat tax system.  The percentage of tax does not vary with the decrease or increase of the student’s score. This means that every student has to pay an equal percentage. Therefore, students with high grades on their final examination pay a higher percentage of tax relative to students with low grades. This method of taxation is not suitable since equity does not prevail. Students would be discouraged to work hard in avoidance to pay a high tax. The method favors the students with low scores because they will be deducted few points for their tax.  Therefore, progressive tax system should not be applied in class since it is unfair to the hardworking students hence decreases their morale to work hard.

Regressive Tax

This method of taxation takes a larger percentage from students with low scores than students with high scores. In general, a progressive tax is applied uniformly. This means that it hits the students with low scores harder. This method of taxation is suitable in class since it challenges the lazy students to work harder in order to avoid the high burden of taxation. Therefore, every student in class will be striving to get a high score, and this increases the competition. Continuous levy of this tax will improve the overall performance of the students in the class.

This method of taxation is fairer relative to others since its increases competition in class. The purpose of levying a tax on points is to improve the overall performance of the students and create healthy competition. Every student will work hard to get a high grade so that they do not suffer from a high tax burden. Therefore, the employment of this method of taxation is suitable and would be more effective compared to other methods of taxation.

Tax Equity

Equity is the concept of fairness in the collection of taxes. More specifically, it refers to equal chances in life regardless of identity to provide all students in class with basic and equal minimum services to increase their commitment. Horizontal equity in class means the students who are not hardworking should pay more. This method treats differently those who have differences in levels of aspects. Equity is related to the concept of tax neutrality or the idea that an effective tax system should not discriminate against students or distort their behavior unduly. Every student is entitled to pay tax, what varies is the amount of tax paid. Therefore, this paper recommends regressive method of taxation in the class since it is efficient and would improve the overall performance of the students.

Did you find any useful knowledge relating to tax fairness and tax efficiency in this post? What are the key facts that grabbed your attention? Let us know in the comments. Thank you.

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Stewardship Financial Reporting

To What Extent And How The Stewardship Aspect Helps The Decision Usefulness Aspect In Financial Reporting

Financial reporting is a formal process by which a company communicates with its stakeholders through disclosing its financial figures. According to the recent conceptual framework of IASB about financial reporting, there are two aspects of objectives of financial reporting. One is stewardship, which deals with management responsibility towards the company, and another one is decision-usefulness, which mainly deals with the decision-making users of the financial statement.

Stewardship is an ethical term in accounting that imposes a responsibility to the management of an organization to take care of business carefully and provide reliable information the stakeholders about the resources of business by financial reporting (Williamson, 2002). On the other hand, decision usefulness is a concept related to the preparation of financial statement in which a company try to provide better information by considering the relevant decision makers.

There was a debate among the experts whether the stewardship should consider as an objective of financial reporting or not and whether the decision usefulness provide same concept like stewardship. However, later the IASB and FASB resolve this debate by introducing an exposure draft. In the exposure draft, it told that stewardship should consider as a separate objective of financial reporting (Kothari, 2008).

Stewardship Financial Reporting
Stewardship Financial Reporting

Some experts believe that the stewardship has relationship decision usefulness. They also believe that the stewardship aspect of objective helps the decision usefulness to an extent. On the other hand, some experts believe that there is no relationship between these two. Let us see how and to what extent stewardship helps the decision usefulness.

  • Stewardship helps to increase the decision usefulness to the relevant decision maker by imposing responsibility to the management to take care of business professionally. When the management take cares the business resources in an efficient way, the output of financial report will automatically be reliable (Young, 1998).
  • Stewardship influences the organization to conduct audit of their financial statements by an independent auditor. The decision usefulness will rise when an independent auditor review the financial statement (Latham, 2005).
  • Stewardship helps in accurate valuation of a company by recording and providing accurate information to the decision makers. This accurate valuation information increases the reliability as well as decision usefulness among the stakeholders.
  • It protects the interest of all related parties to the business by disclosing right information to the right parties. When the flow of information is in a perfect condition, the related parties of business will not lose their interest to the business and can make their decision in an efficient way.
  • Stewardship helps to satisfy the regulator body’s of an organization by managing the organization carefully, ethical financial disclosure and giving proper payment such as tax to the tax authorities. When the users of financial statement see that the regulator body’s are satisfied with this origination, they will also satisfied and the decision usefulness of financial statement will ultimately rise (Latham, 2005) .
  • It highlights the responsibility not only the management but also the regulators, investors and credit providers etc. This helps to increase the financial accuracy of the company. For an example, stewardship imposes the government to seek accurate documentation of financial statement of a company to project future growth in the stock exchange. When the company provide actual documents, the relevant decision makers of financial statement can take proper decision by using accurate information.
  • Stewardship helps to reduce agency problem in an This attracts more potential investors to the organization. When the agency problem reduces, the decision maker can make better financial decision about business and the concept decision usefulness will increase (Gjesdal, 1981).

Advantages of Stewardship

The extent to which the stewardship helps the decision usefulness is a relative concept rather than absolute. This means the decision usefulness may vary upon the degree of stewardship of the management or agent of a company. According to the Joachim Gassen (2007), the usefulness of financial statement in decision-making is much depends on the information available to the market participant. The information availability directly related to stewardship of the management. If the management discloses fair information to the users, the decision usefulness of financial reporting will increase. Let us see a table about the extent to which stewardship helps decision usefulness.



Degree Decision usefulness Decision output

Management integrity to business







Recording financial information accurately


High Positive
No Low


Conduct audit by independent auditor


High Positive
No Low


Accurate financial disclosure




No High


However, there are some arguments against the relationship between stewardship and decision usefulness according to some expert’s opinion. This means the stewardship and decision usefulness are two separate objectives without any influence to each other.

  • Stewardship and decision usefulness should define as completely separate objectives because of their parallel relation (Ernst and Young, 2008).
  • Stewardship mainly deals with past performance of organization to asses’ future performance. On the other hand, decision usefulness provides better information by considering present situation of the company. Therefore, the relations between these two are different (Hand, Isaaks and Sanderson, 2005).

Though there are some negative views about the relationship between stewardship and decision usefulness, there are some strong positive points also. Stewardship directly or indirectly influences the decision usefulness of a financial statement. It helps to increase management integrity, accurate financial recording, increase the reliability of information to the decision makers by conducting regular audit and disclosing accurate information. These points ultimately increase the decision usefulness of financial reporting to the related decision makers. The extent to which stewardship helps decision usefulness may vary according to the degree of stewardship of management to the information in financial reporting.

References (2002) Duncan Williamson: Concepts and Conventions of Accounting

Ernst & Young (2008) International GAAP 2008: Generally Accepted Accounting Practice under International Financial Reporting Standards. International: Wiley (April 14, 2008), p.146 page, stewardship.

Gassen, J. (2007) Are stewardship and decision usefulness complementary of conflicting objectives of financial accounting?

Gjesdal, F. (1981) Accounting for Stewardship. Journal of Accounting Research, 19 (1), p.208-231.

Hand, L., Isaaks, C., & Sanderson, P. (2005). Introduction to accounting for non-specialists. London, Thomson Learning.

Kothari, S. (2008) conceptual framework of financial reporting. International: Pearson, p.38-40.

Latham, A. (2005) The Stewardship Function in Accounting

Ventureline, D. (n.d.) Accounting Theory Definition

What is Financial Reporting? (n.d.) What is Financial Reporting?

Young, R. (1998) The stewardship role in accounting

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Budgeting Methods

Budgeting Methods

Net Present Value (NPV)

Budgeting Methods – The Net Present Value in finance is the summation of present values of the individual cash flows in one entity. It is a time series of cash flows which are both incoming and outgoing. NPV is an important tool in discounted cash flow analysis since it is a standard method for the appraisal of long term projects using time value of money. It is also used for capital budgeting throughout finance, economics and accounting. NPV measures the shortfall or excess of cash flows in terms of the present value and above the cost of funds. Therefore, the method is appropriate since it makes proper use of all cash flows and tries to incorporate the time value of money. However, some companies find this method not applicable since it requires an appropriate rate of discount, which is difficult to obtain. The rate used to discount present value to future cash flows should be appropriate since it is an important variable in this process. NPV is relatively more difficult to explain. This is because the method has many computations, which some organizations may find to be more difficult to apply (Capital, 2012).

The Net Present Value method represents the dynamic investment appraisal and a cash flow method that is discounted. The basis for this method is the assumption that today’s euro is worth that tomorrow’s. The reason being that, today’s euro can be invested somewhere to generate interest. NPV method is appropriate for assessing new investments and comparing investment alternatives. The investment with the highest net present value is a more favorable alternative. Since it is an additive process, the investments net profit value can be summed up with the discount rates that are mutually unexclusive. The Net Present Value is obtained by adding up all discounted cash flows less expenditure on investments (Economic Feasibility Studies , 2010).

In a real world situation, an organization must decide on whether to introduce a new product in the market. The product will have various expenditures on the operations and start up and will have associated the incoming disbursements and cash receipts. Therefore, the project will have an initial cash outflow, which includes cash paid to machinery, transportation costs and disbursements on training employees. The project is estimated to cover the startup expenditures and step to a break-even point at the end of ten years. The present cash is therefore important since it would be better for an organization to invest in a project that will generate revenue in the future rather than do nothing with the money (Volkman, 2012).

Internal Rate of Return (IRR)

The Internal Rate of Return (IRR) is a rate of return that is applied in capital budgeting for measuring and comparing the investments’ profitability. The calculation does not incorporate the environmental factors such as inflation and interest rate. This method is a capital budgeting technique that is mostly used by many organizations.  Business people prefer the method because they like to see their results from the calculation in annual rates rather than actual dollar returns. This enables them to make comparisons of different projects for ranking. The ranking enables them to see the project that is going to provide more bang for the buck. The project with the highest rate of return on investments is the most advantageous for the organization. However, the method is more complicated to calculate by hand. Therefore, it requires the use of a scientific calculator or application of a spreadsheet (Research and Library Services:Northern Ireland Assembly, 2010).

IRR method is time consuming since it is more difficult to calculate by hand. The financial analysts spend extra time to identify and solve problems with the IRR. This may be due to the complications that may arise out of the method utilization when there is no pattern on the conventional cash flow. However, due to the intuitive appeal of the method, it becomes the most preferred in practical application of the techniques in capital budgeting.

One disadvantage of using IRR method is that it does not account for the size of projects when doing comparison. Cash flows are compared to the outlay capital, which generate them. This can bring trouble when different projects require different amounts of capital outlay, but the smaller project brings a higher IRR.  The method also ignores future costs and concerns itself with the projected cash flows, which are generated by a capital injection. Although IRR allows one to make calculations on future cash flows, it makes a wrong assumption that the cash flows can be invested again at the IRR rate. This assumption is not real since the IRR is a high number and the opportunities, which yield the return, are significantly limited or not available at all. Therefore, the Internal Rate of Return is not suitable for making comparisons of several investment projects that vary in amounts, timing and length. It is quite possible that the investment with a lower internal rate of return has a higher net present value than an investment with a higher internal rate of return (mary, 2011).

Budgeting Methods Dissertations
Budgeting Methods Dissertations

In a real world situation, a project with high internal rate of return should have a high net present value and the vice versa is also true. Organizations should therefore consider investing in big projects, which have high internal rate of return since it would be more advantageous for the organization.

Profitability Index

Profitability index is the investment ratio to the payoff of a suggested project. The method is a useful technique in budgeting in the grading of projects. This is because it measures the value recorded by every unit of investment that is made by the investor. The profitability index of a company’s investment indicates the benefits and costs of investing in a particular capital project by the firm. It is a cost-benefit ratio used in the financial analysis of capital budgeting. The method is useful in telling whether an investment increases the value of the firm or not. If the investment increases the value of the firm, more concentration and efforts are employed on it. On the other hand, if the investment does not increase the value, the firm may be tempted to withdraw its capital from the investment. The method considers all cash flows of the project and the time value of money. It is also useful in considering the risk of future cash flows through the cost of capital. Ranking and selecting of projects is also enhanced when capital is rationed. This allows the organization know the projects, which increases the value of the firm, and revenue generating projects. The method is important as it direct organizations on the areas where they should invest their capital and the risks involved (Dra, 2013).

One of the drawbacks of this method is that it requires an estimate of the capital costs for calculating the profitability index. The method may not give a clear decision when comparing projects, which are mutually exclusive. Therefore, it is not the appropriate method to measure the investment decisions of an organization since it lacks efficiency.

Many organizations direct their profits to investments with the target of getting extra revenues from those projects. The profitability index method is crucial in identifying the projects, which add value to the organization, as well as the dormant projects. Through the application of this budgeting method, an organization is able to focus on the highest revenue generating projects and to identify areas where more capital should be employed (Economic Feasibility Studies , 2010).

Budgeting Methods and Modified Internal Rate of Return (MIRR)

Modified Internal Rate of Returns (MIRR) is a financial measure of the attractiveness in an investment. It is a useful measure in capital budgeting to rank various investments of equal size. Also, the method is a discount rate that equates the present value of outflows to the future inflows value. This is a modified method of Internal Rate of Returns, and as such, its aim is to resolve the problems of the IRR. While the Internal Rate of Return assumes the projects’ cash flows are invested again at the IRR, the Modified Internal Rate of Returns assumes that positive cash flows are invested again at the cost of capital for the organization and the firm’s financial cost finances the initial outlays. Therefore, MIRR is a more accurate measure that reflects the costs and profitability of an organization’s project (Capital, 2012).

One of the advantages of this method is that it tells whether an investment increases the value of the firm. This is important for organizations to focus on the weaknesses of its investments. MIRR considers all cash flows in the project and puts in consideration the money time value. Just like other methods of budgeting, MIRR considers the future cash flows riskiness through the capital cost in the rule of decision. The Modified internal rate of return cannot be used for ranking order projects with different sizes. This is because a project with a larger modified internal rate of return may have a lower present value and vice versa. However, there are some variants, which exist for the modified internal rate of return that can be used to compare such projects (Research and Library Services:Northern Ireland Assembly, 2010).

One of the drawbacks of the Modified Internal rate of returns is that it requires the cost of capital estimates in order to make a decision. This may not be practical in an organization. The method may also not give the value maximizing decision when comparing projects, which are mutually exclusive. Lastly, the method may not give a decision when used to select projects in case of capital rationing.

Discounted Payback Period (DPP)

Discounted Payback Period is a procedure for determining the profitability of a project in a certain organization. In comparison to NPV analysis, which gives the project’s overall value, a discounted payback period indicates the length of time in years an organization would take to break even from the initial expenditure undertaken. Future cash flows are assumed to be discounted to time zero. This method has many similarities to payback period. However, the payback period is a measure of how long the initial cash flow would take to be paid back without taking into account the money time value. Discounted payback period is the time taken for the cash flows present value to recover the initial investment (Rogers, 2011).

This method is important since it puts into consideration the time value of money. Also discounted payback period considers the riskiness of cash flows of organization’s projects through the cost of capital employed. However,  there are no concrete criteria of making a decision which would indicate whether the investments increases the value of the firm. This means that the firm cannot identify the projects which adds value to the organization and might end up funding all projects including the dormant ones. The method also requires the capital costs to make payback calculations, which may not be available. Discounted Payback Period method ignores the cash flows that are beyond the payback period (Dra, 2013).

Projects with a negative net present value will lack a discounted payback period because the initial outlay will never be repaid fully. This is unlike the payback period the inflow from future cash flows could exceed the initial outflow. However, when inflows are discounted, a negative NPV is recorded.


NPV is a better and popular theoretical approach to capital budgeting based on several factors. Most important is that the Net Present Value use assumed that any cash flows that are intermediate generated by an investment are reinvested at the cost of capital for the firm. Due to the reasonable estimate of the cost of capital, at which the firm could invest its cash inflows, the use of NPV becomes a more realistic and conservative reinvestment rate in the preferred theory. In addition, certain properties of mathematics may cause a project with zero conventional cash inflow to have more than one IRR. The NPV approach does not have this problem (Capital, 2012).


Capital. (2012). Comparing Budgeting and Budgeting Methods, 1-50.

Dra, P. P. (2013). budgetary methods. Advantage and disadvantages of, 1-2.

Economic Feasibility Studies. (2010). Capital Budgeting Techniques . Capital Budgeting Techniques , 1-8.

Mary, s. m. (2011). work life resource ministry. budgeting methods, 1-3.

Research and Library Services:Northern Ireland Assembly. (2010). Research and Library Services. Northern Ireland Assembly, Research and Library Service, 1-30.

Rogers, M. (2011). Comparing Budgeting. Comparing Budgeting Methods, 1-7.

Volkman, D. A. (2012). Journal Of Financial And Strategic Decisions. A Consistent Yield-Based Capital Budgeting Method, 1-88.

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