Technically, the other current assets line may include any asset that will be used up within the next 12 months. However, other current assets never include assets that are listed elsewhere in the current assets section of the balance sheet. For this reason, other current assets are almost never:
The assets grouped under other current assets are most commonly:
Other (too numerous to list)
Some companies can and do choose to report each of these items separately.
Other current assets may be made up largely of Prepaid Expenses - unless these are listed on a separate line of the balance sheet.
Prepaid expenses are exactly what they sound like. If a company pays a $30 million insurance premium on the last day of June that will provide coverage for the entire month of July, the company will record a $30 million prepaid expense to account for the insurance expense it will show in July that it already paid for in June.
Tax assets can be quite complex. It is not common for companies to have both tax assets and tax liabilities. It is important that investors take note of both items when considering future taxes.
Non-Trade receivables are rarely a large item. They include money owed to the company by non-customers. Non-trade receivables can be caused by related party transactions, the sale of a business unit, etc. The notes to the companys financial statements will often provide much more detail on this item if it is truly important.
There are a variety of other current assets like non-trade receivables which are simply too numerous to list. If a company is following correct reporting procedures, it should not lump items that are different from one another and yet individually important to the company together under the line Other Current Assets.
At most companies, other current assets are a small and unimportant part of the total balance sheet.
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