Transfer prices for servicing the intra-firm turnover: reasons for refusal and terms of application

Economy and management of the enterprise

We have analyzed the problems of decision-making in applying transfer (internal) prices for servicing the intra-company turnover of production enterprises. The relevance of the research topic is substantiated. We have described the existing interpretations of the terms "transfer prices" and «transfer pricing». We have found that research in the field of transfer pricing is fragmented and inconsistent. We have offered a comprehensive view of the above problem, linking it to management practices. We have systematized the advantages and disadvantages of managerial decisions on using transfer prices. The most important advantages of using transfer prices are determining the costs of the buying and the revenues of the selling units, solving the problems of evaluating the performance of the centers of financial responsibility, ensuring motivation of the staff within the company. Disadvantages include the artificial origin of domestic prices, danger of conflict of interests of cooperating units, additional costs of making settlements, risk of reduced motivation of some structural units and legitimized low efficiency of others. The prerequisites and limitations for application of transfer pricing are formulated in view of the accumulated experience. We have proposed the conditions for their optimal use. A brief review of the methods for calculating the cost, market and contractual transfer prices is presented. Each of the methods is described separately. An algorithm for making a decision on application of transfer prices in the system of management accounting and budgeting is proposed. Using the decomposition method as a combination of market and cost-based pricing methods is justified. We have proposed to replace domestic prices with other indicators, including fees for resources, rental and lease payments. The paper is concluded by considering the procedure for making a decision on application of transfer prices for specific production conditions with the example of the repair and mechanical service of an industrial enterprise. The developed production plan is characterized separately for budgeting the planning phase, the accounting phase and budget analysis. The increased efficiency of the above actions is demonstrated before and after automated calculations are introduced. We have formulated the conclusions and outlined the directions for further research in the field of economic theory and practice.