Business Dictionary

The Small Business Dictionary defines, explains, and cross-references more than 1,800 key small business words, phrases, acronyms, and concepts, covering topics including small business finance, management, sales, startup, exit strategy, and growth. To use the dictionary, type a word in the search box or click a letter to browse the listings alphabetically.

Extraordinary item

An unusual and unexpected one-time event that must be explained to shareholders in an annual or quarterly report, e.g., write down for a discontinued operation, employee fraud, a lawsuit, or other one-time events. Results are often presented with and without these items. The logic of excluding these items is that investors have a better notion of future performance if one-time events are excluded. Differs from an unusual item in that extraordinary items are (1) material; (2) non-recurring; and (3) outside the ordinary nature of the business.

Glossary provided by Campbell R. Harvey, Professor of Finance at Duke University.
Copyright © 2006, Campbell R. Harvey. All worldwide rights reserved. Do not reproduce without explicit permission.
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