Accrual basis applied to the public sector: Analysis in the recognition of unprocessed remains to be paid and previous fiscal years expenses of Brazilian municipalities

José Isidio de Freitas Costa, Silvana Karina de Melo Travassos, Jeronymo José Libonati, José Francisco Ribeiro Filho, Valter Santos Soares


The convergence process of Brazilian Accounting Standards Applied to the Public Sector (NBCAPS) to the International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) brought into focus the discussions on the use of a mixed method in the public sector. The aim of this paper is to analyze the accrual accounting method applied in the public sector and the recognition of out standing remains that were not processed and expenses from previous fiscal years in Brazilianmunicipalities. The hypotheses tested the reflection of the partial implementation of accrual financial results of the Brazilian municipalities. Distortions caused in the financial liabilities and in the financial surplus of 4,246 Brazilian municipalities were observed in the light of the accounting theory, by reason of the adjustments made in recognition of out standing remains that were not processed and expenses from previous fiscal years, which represented 97.59% of the total sample comprised by 4,351 municipalities analyzed. To perform the analysis we used the asset values , financial liability, due unprocessed remains and expenses from previous fiscal years, collected from the Brazil Finance (FINBRA) base in the period 2002 to 2009. It is concluded that the smaller cities are less regular in sending their accounting data to the National Treasury Secretariat (STN). In 57.51% of the sample there was a variation of less than 5% in the balance after making adjustments. The occurrence of reversals in the financial surplus of 1,310 municipalities/year analyzed as well as investments in financial losses to 1,143 municipalities/year analyzed due to partial implementation of the accrual basis were found.

Key words: accrual basis, public sector, due unprocessed remains, expenses from previous years.


regime de competência, setor público; restos a pagar não processados; despesas de exercícios anteriores.

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