Costs are the most important element in most business decisions. Cost is actually estimated cost or projected costs due to difficulties involved in cost tracing and allocation, relevant range issues, which cost method is used, and the cost benefit approach to measuring costs. Although there are standard costing and reporting methods followed by all companies, different companies compute and report the same types of data differently depending on their industry and sector. Companies commonly operate in the merchandising, manufacturing, and service sectors. There are different cost concepts and terms are often used in accounting reports. Managers are able to best use the information provided and avoid misuse of that information.