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Definition: Turnover (Index)

Short-term statistics

2006 definition

It is the objective of the turnover index to show the development of the market for goods and services.

Turnover (1) comprises the totals invoiced by the observation unit during the reference period, and this corresponds to market sales of goods or services supplied to third parties. Turnover also includes all other charges (transport, packaging, etc.) passed on to the customer, even if these charges are listed separately in the invoice.

Turnover excludes VAT and other similar deductible taxes directly linked to turnover as well as all duties and taxes on the goods or services invoiced by the unit.

Reduction in prices, rebates and discounts as well as the value of returned packing must be deducted. Price reductions, rebates and bonuses conceded later to clients, for example at the end of the year, are not taken into account.

Income classified as other operating income, financial income and extraordinary income in company accounts is excluded from turnover. According to this definition, the items generally included are:

- sales of manufactured products,
- sales of products manufactured by subcontractors,
- sales of goods purchased for resale in the same condition as received,
- invoiced services provided,
- sales of by-products,
- invoiced charges for packaging and transport,
- invoiced hours worked to third parties for labour-only subcontracting,
- invoiced mounting, installations and repairs,
- invoiced instalments (stage payments),
- invoiced development of software and software licences,
- sales of supplied electric power, gas, heat, steam and water,
- sales of waste and scrap materials,
- subsidies on products (2).

Subject to the treatment of income classified as "other operating income, financial income and extraordinary income" in company accounts (3), the items generally excluded are:

- VAT and other similar deductible taxes directly linked to turnover all duties and taxes on the goods or services invoiced by the unit
- commissions,
- leases and rentals,
- leases for own production units and machines if used by third parties,
- leases of company-owned dwellings,
- receipts for licence-fees,
- receipts from staff facilities (for example from a factory canteen),
- the supply of products and services within the observation unit,
- sales of own land and fixed assets,
- sales or leases of own properties,
- sales of shares,
- interest receipts and dividends,
- other extraordinary income.

The above items may be included if they generate turnover in the principle field of operation of the observation unit.


(1) The expressions "turnover" and "sales" are often used as synonyms in the context of short-term statistics.
(2) If subsidies on products are hard to measure they can be omitted for the purposes of calculating indices over time.
(3) National accounting rules should be used as guiding principles of what to include and to exclude. Regulation (EC) No 588/2001 of 26 March 2001 concerning short-term statistics
European Union, Commission Regulation (EC) No 1503/2006 of 28 September 2006 implementing and amending Council Regulation (EC) No 1165/98 concerning short-term statistics as regards definitions of variables, list of variables and frequency of data compilation