The Intersection of Mark to Market Accounting and Inflation Control Measures

Feranmi Olaseinde

Hatched by Feranmi Olaseinde

Nov 01, 2023

4 min read


The Intersection of Mark to Market Accounting and Inflation Control Measures


In the world of accounting, finance, and investing, various methods and measures are employed to ensure accurate and up-to-date information on the financial situation of institutions and companies. One such method is mark to market (MTM), which aims to provide a realistic appraisal of an entity's current financial state based on current market conditions. In this article, we will explore the concept of mark to market, its benefits, and its limitations, and how it intersects with the government's efforts to curb rising inflation.

Understanding Mark to Market (MTM):

Mark to market is a method used to measure the fair value of accounts that can fluctuate over time, such as assets and liabilities. Unlike historical cost accounting, which maintains an asset's value at its original purchase cost, mark to market presents a more accurate figure for the current value of a company's assets based on what it might receive in exchange for the asset under current market conditions. This allows for a more realistic representation of an institution's financial situation.

Benefits and Limitations of Mark to Market:

The use of mark to market accounting has several advantages. Firstly, it provides a more accurate reflection of an asset's true value in the current market conditions. This can be particularly useful during favorable economic times when assets may be worth more than their original purchase cost. Additionally, mark to market accounting allows for greater transparency and clarity in financial reporting. Investors and stakeholders can have a clearer understanding of an entity's financial health.

However, mark to market accounting also has its limitations, especially during unfavorable or volatile market conditions. In such situations, the fair value of an asset may not accurately represent its true value. This can lead to potential distortions in financial reporting and may not provide an accurate picture of an institution's financial standing. It is crucial to consider these limitations and exercise caution when relying solely on mark to market accounting.

Government Efforts to Curb Rising Inflation:

Inflation is a concern for governments worldwide, as it can erode the value of currency and cause economic instability. The Nigerian government, for instance, has expressed its intention to control rising inflation by implementing measures to cut money supply. The Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Mr. Wale Edun, has highlighted the need to strike a balance between ensuring adequate money supply to support economic growth and preventing excessive inflation.

On the monetary side, the government can control the growth of money supply through various measures such as adjusting interest rates, engaging in open market operations, or setting reserve requirements for banks. These measures help regulate the flow of money in the economy, ensuring that it does not exceed the needs of economic growth.

On the fiscal side, caution is required in how the federal, state, and local governments disburse money. By carefully managing government spending and ensuring judicious allocation of funds, the government can contribute to stabilizing inflation rates and maintaining economic stability.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Diversify Investments: In volatile market conditions, it is essential to diversify investment portfolios to mitigate the risks associated with mark to market accounting. By spreading investments across different asset classes and sectors, investors can reduce their exposure to market fluctuations and potential distortions in asset valuation.
  • 2. Stay Informed: To navigate the complexities of mark to market accounting and its intersection with inflation control measures, it is crucial to stay informed about current market conditions, economic indicators, and government policies. Regularly monitor financial news sources and engage with industry experts to gain insights that can inform investment decisions.
  • 3. Adopt a Balanced Approach: When implementing inflation control measures, governments should strive for a balanced approach that supports economic growth while preventing excessive inflation. By carefully considering both monetary and fiscal measures, governments can strike a balance that promotes stability and sustainable economic development.


Mark to market accounting provides a valuable tool for assessing an entity's financial standing based on current market conditions. However, it is essential to recognize its limitations, particularly during unfavorable market conditions. Inflation control measures, such as cutting money supply, play a crucial role in maintaining economic stability. By adopting a balanced approach and staying informed, both investors and governments can navigate the complexities of mark to market accounting and contribute to a stable and prosperous economy.

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