It is a managerial accounting cost method of expensing all costs related with producing a particular product. Absorption costing utilizes the total direct costs and overhead costs related with manufacturing a product as the cost base. Generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) need absorption costing for outside reporting. Absorption costing is also refer to as "full absorption costing".
Some of the direct costs related with producing a product involve wages for workers actually manufacturing a product, the raw materials used in manufacturing a product, and all the overhead costs, like all utility costs, utilized in manufacturing a good.
Absorption costing involves anything that is a direct cost in manufacturing a good as the cost base. This is distinct with variable costing because in variable costing fixed manufacturing costs are not absorbed by the manufactured goods. Advocates encourage absorption costing as fixed manufacturing costs give future benefits.