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Accounting Profitability Analysis (CO-PA, Margin Analysis)

The strategic solution under S/4HANA.

SAP has provided CO-PA (Profitability Analysis) with the two methods of account-based and imputed profitability analysis as an application for profitability and market segment accounting. While account-based CO-PA (Margin Analysis) enables an account-based presentation of profit and loss, costing-based CO-PA (CB CO-PA) uses so-called value fields.

Both methods can be used in parallel and enable an EBIT(DA) presentation according to the cost-of-sales method (UCP or IFRS). In practice and especially in ECC systems, costing-based CO-PA has become widely accepted due to its advantages.

At the moment, it is a very customer-specific decision whether margin analysis already fully covers the requirements - especially in group reporting - or whether imputed profitability analysis will continue to be used. Here, a comprehensive analysis in the Explore phase of S/4HANA transformation projects is essential. We will be happy to support you in the decision-making process.

Ivo Konecny, PartnerCONSILIO GmbH

Accounting-based profitability analysis gains importance with S/4HANA as "margin analysis"

With S/4HANA, accounting-based profitability analysis gains in importance because it is integrated into the new data model in the Universal Journal (ACDOCA). Thus, every posting in accounting CO-PA is updated directly in the line item table ACDOCA. This ensures the "single source of truth" approach for accounting-based Profitability Analysis as well. In addition to the integration into the Universal Journal, SAP has also enhanced the functionality of account-based Profitability Analysis in S/4HANA and largely eliminated the main disadvantages.

Currently, not all functionalities of costing-based CO-PA are included in Margin Analysis and the flexibility does not yet correspond to costing-based CO-PA either.  For customers with a very extensive and customized Profitability Analysis, for example via user exits, it is therefore recommended to use it in parallel when switching to S/4HANA, especially for brownfield projects, and to switch to Margin Analysis as late as possible. The account-based profitability analysis (AB CO-PA) is integrated in SAP S/4HANA in the Universal Journal (ACDOCA).

The main functional enhancements to account-based profitability analysis in S/4HANA

  • Quantities are included
  • Splitting the cost of sales according to the cost component split - The cost of sales is split into its individual cost items (cost component split) on the basis of the cost of goods manufactured calculation and assigned to corresponding primary cost elements. A differentiation into fixed and variable components is also possible.
  • Splitting of the production variance according to variance categories - The individual variance categories from the production orders can be assigned to different primary cost elements.
  • Updating of incoming sales orders - incoming sales orders are updated and evaluated in the Universal Journal using a special enhancement ledger in the general ledger and the activation of "Predictive Accounting for Incoming Sales Orders" in the margin analysis with regard to expected sales and cost of sales (CoS/KdU).


Both imputed CO-PA and margin analysis are integrated into the S/4HANA system landscape to enable a complete and correct presentation of the P&L according to UKV (IFRS). All sales and associated costs of a reporting period are presented.

Do you have any questions?

Our experts have more than 20 years of experience in the design and implementation of profit and market segment accounting.

You have successfully completed implementation projects in an S/4HANA environment and are happy to bring this experience to your S/4HANA project.

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[Translate to English:] Jetzt profitieren.