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Alberta Gauge Company, Ltd., a small manufacturing company in Calgary, Alberta, manufactures three types of electrical gauges used in a variety of machinery. For many years the company has been profitable and has operated at capacity. However, in the last two years, prices on all gauges were reduced and selling expenses increased to meet competition and keep the plant operating at capacity. Second-quarter results for the current year, which follow, typify recent experience.


Income Statement

Second Quarter

(in thousands)

Q Gauge E Gauge R Gauge Total
Sales $1600 $900 $900 $3400
Cost of Goods Sold $1048 $770 $50 $2768
Gross Margin $552 $130 $-50 $632
Selling and Admin exp $370 $185 $135 $690
Income before taxes $182 $-55 $-185 $-58


Alice Carlo, the company’s president, is concerned about the results of the pricing, selling, and production prices. After reviewing the second-quarter results, she asked her management staff to consider the following three suggestions:

  • Discontinue the R-gauge line immediately. R-gauges would not be returned to the product line unless the problems with the gauge can be identified and resolved.
  • Increase quarterly sales promotion by $100,000 on the Q-gauge product line in order to increase sales volume by 15 percent.
  • Cut production on the E-gauge line by 50 percent, and cut the traceable advertising and promotion for this line to $20,000 each quarter.


Jason Sperry, the controller, suggested a more careful study of the financial relationships to determine the possible effects on the company’s operating results of the president’s proposed course of action. The president agreed and assigned JoAnn Brower, the assistant controller, to prepare an analysis. Brower has gathered the following information.

  • All three gauges are manufactured with common equipment and facilities.
  • The selling and administrative expense is allocated to the three gauge lines based on average sales volume over the past three years.
  • Special selling expenses (primarily advertising, promotion, and shipping) are incurred for each gauge as follows:


Quarterly Advertising Promotion Shipping Exp
Q gauge $210000 $10/unit
E gauge $100000 $4/unit
R gauge $40000 $10/unit









  • The unit manufacturing costs for the three products are as follows:
Q gauge E gauge R gauge
Direct material $31 $17 $50
Direct labor $40 $20 $60
Variable manufacturing overhead $45 $30 $60
Fixed manufacturing overhead $15 $10 $20
Total $131 $77 $190

The unit sales prices for the three products are as follows:

Q-gauge …………………………………………………………………….. $200

E-gauge …………………………………………………………………….. 90

R-gauge …………………………………………………………………….. 180

  • The company is manufacturing at capacity and is selling all the gauges it produces.



From the information gathered in the case, submit a written report forming analysis, conclusion and recommendations. Incorporate the answer to the following guide question:

  1. JoAnn Brower says that Alberta gauge Company’s product-line income statement for the second quarter is not suitable for analyzing proposal and making decision such as the ones suggested by Alice Carlo. Discuss the reasons to Alberta Gauge’s president the following points:
  • Explain why the product-line income statement as presented is not suitable for analysis and decision making.
  • Describe an alternative income-statement format that would be more suitable for analysis and decision making, and explain why it is better.



  1. Use the operating data presented for Alberta Gauge Company and assume that the president’s proposed course of action had been implement at the beginning of the second quarter. Then evaluate the president’s proposal by specifically responding to the following points.


  • Are each of the three suggestion cost-effective? Support your discussion with an analysis that shows the net impact on income before taxes for each of the three suggestions.
  • Was the president correct in proposing that the R-gauge line be eliminated? Explain your answer.
  • Was the president correct in promoting the Q-gauge line rather than the E-gauge line? Explain your answer.
  • Does the proposed course of action make effective use of the company’s capacity? Explain your answer.


  1. Are there any qualitative factors that Alberta Gauge Company’s management should consider before it drops the R-gauge line? Explain your answer.
















Select an organization from any industry in your own interest and evaluate its financial performance based on its published financial statement. Comparison can be made either with of another company or past year financial performance.


  1. Analyze financial statement using relevant techniques to assess the financial viability of an organization
  2. Use appropriate calculations and methods to improve the quality of financial information used and describe the associated limitations.
  3. Make recommendations on the strategic portfolio of an organization based on the interpretation of financial information.