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This video shows an example of how to calculate a spending variance.

A spending variance is the difference between an actual expense amount and the expense amount that should have occurred, given the activity level (this is the expense amount predicted by the flexible budget). Thus, if the actual supplies expense is $60,000 and the supplies expense predicted by the flexible budget is $53,000, the company would have an unfavorable spending variance of $7,000. You cannot tell whether the unfavorable variance is because the company paid too much for the supplies or used too many supplies; further variance analysis is necessary to determine the cause.