What is discrepancies?

1 Answers

Deborah Mann Profile
Deborah Mann answered
The word discrepancy means that there is a failure to match something. In other words if two or more things should correspond and they do not, it is said that there is a discrepancy. Obviously if there is more than one discrepancy, then there would be discrepancies, which is the word that you have used in your question.

  • An example of a discrepancy
If a storekeeper was to add up all of his or her day's takings and the amount did not match with total amounts on the receipts that have been given, then there is a discrepancy.

  • Discrepancies in book keeping
To keep accurate accounts there should be no discrepancies that cannot be accounted for. Very often, an initial discrepancy will show itself to be a mistake in the adding or subtracting of the figures and so is a human error that can be rectified as soon as it is discovered.

If the discrepancy cannot be discovered in such a basic and simple way, then other avenues need to be looked at. To take the example of the store again, it could mean that a staff member has made a mistake and perhaps not made a record of, or got a receipt for some necessary item that has been bought and so there is not a record of it.

It could, however, have a more sinister meaning. For example if a storekeeper knows that they have bought a particular number of items to sell in the shop and some of them have gone, the first assumption would be that they have been sold.

If, however, there was no record of the sales, there would be a discrepancy that suggests that the items have been stolen by either a shoplifter or, even worse, by a member of staff.

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