June 1, 2021

NAW Seeking Stories About How Distributors Benefit from Inventory Accounting Method

Summarized from Jade West, National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors

The NAW-led LIFO Coalition continues to work to ensure that a repeal of last in, first out (LIFO) inventory accounting is not included as a “pay-for” in tax or spending legislation. We have had numerous meetings with Democratic and Republican members of the tax-writing committees in the House and Senate and continue to get great feedback and reports that LIFO repeal is not being considered – or even discussed – as the tax bills develop in Congress. Some of the key Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee have long been, and continue to be, allies in our mission to protect LIFO, and we have been told anecdotally that Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) has said he is also not considering LIFO repeal.

Despite the consistent and welcome good news, NAW and the coalition continue to work the issue. We are currently trying to identify House Democrats who do not serve on the tax-writing committee who would be willing to sign a joint letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) simply notifying her of their interest in protecting LIFO, so she is aware of the issue should it come up in later tax discussions. We are also working to build relationships with new members of Congress who are most likely not familiar with LIFO to provide them with background information on the accounting method. To that end, the coalition’s consulting firm, The Herald Group, has taken a LIFO chart and explanatory material prepared by one of the tax experts in the coalition and created a visual document explaining how LIFO works. Companies on LIFO clearly understand the issue in much greater depth, but we think this visual guide will be very useful in demonstrating LIFO as an essential business tool to members of Congress unfamiliar with inventory accounting methods. 

Finally, The Herald Group is always looking for good anecdotal stories from LIFO users on the importance of LIFO to their business, and we would particularly like to include on our coalition website any videos that businesses would be willing to provide, talking about their use of LIFO. If you would consider providing either a written or videotaped LIFO comment, please email Jade West at jwest@naw.org.