Significant accounting policies – assessments and assumptions for accounting purposes

Statement of compliance

The consolidated financial statements have been prepared in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) adopted by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) as endorsed by the EU. In addition, the recommendation RFR 1 Supplementary Accounting Rules for Groups, issued by the Swedish Financial Reporting Board, has been applied.

The Parent Company has applied the same accounting policies as those applied in the consolidated financial statements except as set out below in the section “Parent Company’s accounting policies.”

The financial statements are presented on pages 46-122 in the (PDF:) printed Annual Report. The Parent Company’s Annual Report and the consolidated financial statements were approved for issuance by the Board of Directors on 1 March 2019. The Group’s and the Parent Company’s income statements and balance sheets are subject to adoption at the Annual General Meeting on 29 April 2019.

Basis of measurement

Assets and liabilities are stated on a historical cost basis except for certain financial assets and liabilities, which are stated at their fair value. Financial assets and liabilities measured at fair value comprise derivative instruments. Receivables and liabilities and items of income and expense are offset only when required or expressly permitted in an accounting standard.

The preparation of financial statements in conformity with IFRS requires management to make assessments, estimates and assumptions that affect the application of accounting policies and recognized amounts of assets and liabilities, income and expenses. Actual results may differ from these assessments. The estimates and underlying assumptions are reviewed on an ongoing basis. Revisions to accounting estimates are recognized in the period in which the estimate is revised if the revision affects only that period or in the period of the revision and future periods if the revision affects both current and future periods.

Judgments made by management in the application of IFRS that have had a significant effect on the financial statements and estimates with a significant risk of material adjustment in the next year, are discussed further below. Events after the balance sheet date refer to both favorable and unfavorable events that have occurred after the balance sheet date but before the date the financial statements were authorized for issue by the Board of Directors. Significant non-adjusting events, that is, events indicative of conditions that arose after the balance sheet date, are disclosed in the financial statements. Only adjusting events, that is, those that provide evidence of conditions that existed at the balance sheet date, have been considered in the final establishment of the financial statements. The most significant accounting policies for the Group, as set out below, have been applied consistently to all periods presented in these consolidated financial statements except as specifically described. Moreover, the Group’s accounting policies have been consistently applied in the Group reporting by all members of the Group and in the Group reporting of associated companies, where necessary, by adaptation to Group policies.

Changes in accounting policies

The below amendments of standards and new and amended interpretations came into effect 1 January 2018. None of these standards had any material impact on Sandvik’s financial statements.

  • IFRS 9 Financial Instruments. The standard specifies how an entity should classify and measure financial assets, a forward looking expected credit loss model is introduced and hedge accounting aligned to how the entity manages risks. The Group has chosen to continue to apply IAS 39 Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement for its hedge accounting. The opening balance for 2018 is adjusted with a decrease in equity of –72 million SEK related to the transition to IFRS 9. The Group will not restate prior periods.
  • IFRS 15 Revenue from Contracts with Customers. The purpose with the new revenue standard is to create one single principle-based standard for all industries to replace existing standards and statements concerning revenues. The revenue standard establishes a new five step model of recognizing revenue from customer contracts. It requires revenue to be recognized when control of goods and services are transferred to the customer point in time or over time. Sandvik has chosen to apply the full retrospective method for the transition to IFRS 15. The opening balance for 2017 is adjusted with a decrease in equity of –28 million SEK. The consolidated financial statements for 2017 have been restated in accordance with the chosen transition method.

New standards published by IASB, but not yet effective

  • IFRS 16 Leases. The standard will be effective from 1 January 2019. Sandvik has in project form reviewed all the group’s leasing arrangements and assessed the impact transiting to the new lease standard. The lease portfolio includes almost 10,000 contracts and covers mainly operational leases for offices, production and warehouse facilities, production, office and IT equipment. Existing finance leases measured previously under IAS 17 Leases are reclassified to IFRS 16 to the amounts recognized immediately before the date of application of the new standard. Sandvik has chosen to perform the transition in line with the Cumulative catch-up approach and has applied the expedient to not restate any comparative information. Right-of-use assets have been determined as an amount equal to the lease liabilities as identified at initial application. A single discount rate has been applied per country and per asset classes Land and Buildings respectively Other assets such as machinery, equipment, vehicles and IT. Hindsight has been used to determine the lease terms when an option to terminate or extend has been available. Lease contracts shorter than 12 months or ending within 12 months at the date of application are considered short-term and hence not recognized as lease liability or right-of-use asset. In addition, low value contracts (with a value as new below 5,000 USD) are also excluded from being recognized as lease liability or right-of-use asset. The Group’s activities as a lessor are not material and hence the Group does not expect any significant impact on the financial statements. However, some additional disclosures will be required from next year. The effect on the Group financial reports transiting to IFRS 16 as per 1 January 2019 is summarized below.


Closing balance 31 Dec 2018 before transition to IFRS 16

Reclassification of finance leases due to IFRS 16 transition

Estimated adjustments due to IFRS 16 transition

Estimated adjusted opening balance 1 Jan 2019

Property, plant and equipment




Right-of-use assets




Other liabilities





Long term Lease liabilities




Short term Lease liabilities



Sandvik has identified many contracts concerning premises with open-ended contracts. In many countries local law provides protection to the lessee from being noticed. This requires the Sandvik lessee to determine the contract period instead of considering the termination clause. The lessee then determines the length of the contract period based on factors such as the importance of building to the business, any planned or made leasehold investments and the market situation for premises. As a consequence, these contracts have in many cases had the contract period extended.

  • IFRIC 23 Uncertainty over Income Tax Treatments. Initial application is from 1 January 2019 with earlier adoption permitted. The amendment is adopted by the EU. The amendment addresses how uncertainty regarding amounts for income taxation shall be reported, how a tax receivable shall be reported when the amount is appealed, and discussions are held with tax authorities. IFRIC 23 is expected to have very limited impact on the financial reports. The opening balance for 2019 will be adjusted by reclassifying the provision for taxes, 1,457 MSEK.
  • Other changes and amendments are considered not having a material effect on Sandvik’s financial statements.

Basis of consolidation

The consolidated accounts are prepared in accordance with the Group’s accounting principles and include the accounts of the Parent Company and all Group companies. Group companies are consolidated from the date the Group exercises control or influence over the company. Divested companies are included in the consolidated accounts until the date the Group ceases to control or exercise influence over them. In preparing Sandvik’s consolidated financial statements, any Intra-Group transactions have been eliminated.


Subsidiaries are entities over which the Parent Company has a controlling influence. Controlling influence exists if the Parent Company has the power over the investee, meaning the investor has existing rights that give it the ability to direct the relevant activities, is exposed to or has the rights to variable return from its involvement in the investee and can, through its influence, affect the return from the involvement in the investee. In assessing controlling interest, de facto control, potential voting rights that are currently exercisable or convertible are taken into account.

The financial statements of subsidiaries are included in the consolidated financial statements from the date that the controlling influence commences until the date that control ceases.

For cases in which the subsidiary’s accounting policies do not coincide with the Group’s accounting policies, adjustments were made to comply with the Group’s accounting policies.

The consolidated financial statements are prepared in accordance with the purchase method. In business combinations, acquired assets and assumed liabilities are identified and classified, and measured at fair value on the date of acquisition (also known as a purchase price allocation).

Transaction costs in conjunction with acquisitions are directly in profit or loss for the year as other operating expenses.

Contingent considerations are recognized as financial liabilities and at fair value on the acquisition date. Contingent considerations are remeasured at each reporting period with any change recognized in profit or loss for the year.

In step acquisitions, when a controlling interest is achieved, any net assets acquired earlier in the acquired units are remeasured at fair value and the result of the remeasurement is recognized in profit or loss. If the controlling interest is lost upon divestment, net profit is recognized in profit or loss. Any residual holding in the divested business is then measured at fair value on the date of divestment and its effect is recognized in profit or loss for the year.

Non-controlling interests

Non-controlling interests are recognized as a separate item in the Group’s equity.

Acquisitions of non-controlling interests are recognized as a transaction within shareholders’ equity, meaning between the Parent Company’s owners and non-controlling interests. Accordingly, goodwill does not arise in conjunction with such transactions. Gains or losses on disposals to non-controlling interests are also recognized in equity.

Associated companies

Associated companies are partly owned entities over which the Group commands a significant influence, but not control, over the financial and operating policies. Normally this means a shareholding of between 20% and 50% of the voting rights. Interests in associated companies are recognized in accordance with the equity method in the consolidated financial statements. Under the equity method, the carrying amounts of interests in associated companies correspond to the recognized equity of associated companies, any goodwill and any other remaining fair value adjustments recognized at acquisition date. Sandvik’s share of the associated company’s income, adjusted for dissolution of acquired surplus or deficit values, is recognized as a separate item in the consolidated income statement.

Foreign currency

Functional currency and presentation currency

The Parent Company’s functional currency is Swedish kronor (SEK), which is also the reporting currency of the Parent Company and the Group. Accordingly, the financial statements are presented in SEK. All amounts are in million SEK unless otherwise stated.

Foreign currency transactions

Transactions in foreign currencies are translated into functional currency at the foreign exchange rate prevailing at the date of the transaction. The functional currency is the currency of the primary economic environment in which the Group entities operate. Monetary assets and liabilities denominated in foreign currencies at the balance sheet date are translated to the functional currency at the foreign exchange rate prevailing at that date. Foreign exchange differences arising on translation are recognized in profit or loss for the year. Non-monetary assets and liabilities measured in terms of historical cost in a foreign currency are translated using the exchange rate prevailing at the date of the transaction. Non-monetary assets and liabilities that are measured at fair value are retranslated to the functional currency at the exchange rate prevailing at the date that the fair value was determined.

Financial statements of foreign operations

The assets and liabilities of foreign operations, including goodwill and fair value adjustments arising on consolidation, are translated from the foreign operation’s functional currency to the Group’s reporting currency, SEK, at foreign exchange rates prevailing at the balance sheet date. Revenues and expenses of foreign operations are translated to SEK at average rates that approximate the foreign exchange rates prevailing at each of the transaction dates. Translation differences arising from the translation of the net investment in foreign operations are recognized in other comprehensive income and are accumulated in a separate component of equity, a translation reserve. When the foreign operation is divested, the accumulated translation differences attributable to the divested foreign operation are reclassified from equity to profit or loss for the year as a reclassification adjustment at the date on which the profit or loss of the divestment is recognized. For cases in which divestments made include a residual controlling influence, the proportionate share of accumulated translation differences from other comprehensive income is transferred to non-controlling interests.

Net investments in foreign operations

Monetary non-current receivables or monetary non-current liabilities to a foreign operation for which no settlement is planned or is not likely to take place in the foreseeable future are, in practice, part of the company’s net investment in foreign operations. A foreign exchange difference arising on the monetary non-current receivable or monetary non-current liability is recognized in other comprehensive income and accumulated in a separate component of shareholders’ equity, entitled translation reserve. When a foreign operation is divested, the accumulated foreign exchange differences attributable to monetary non-current receivables or monetary noncurrent liabilities are included in the accumulated translation differences reclassified from the translation reserve in equity to profit or loss for the year.

Financial instruments

Financial instruments recognized in the balance sheet include assets, such as cash and cash equivalents, loan and trade receivables, financial investments and derivatives, and liabilities such as loan liabilities, accounts payable and derivatives.

Recognition and derecognition

A financial asset or a financial liability is recognized on the balance sheet when the entity becomes a party to the contractual provisions of the instrument. Trade receivables are recognized upon issuance of the invoice. A liability is recognized when the counterparty has performed under the agreement and the company is contractually obliged to settle the obligation, even if no invoice has been received.

A financial asset is derecognized when the rights under the agreement are realized or have expired, or when control of the contractual rights is lost. The same applies to a portion of a financial asset. A financial liability is derecognized when the obligation specified in the contract is discharged or otherwise expires.

A financial asset and a financial liability are offset and presented in a net amount in the balance sheet only if there is a legally enforceable right to set off the recognized amounts and there is an intention either to settle on a net basis or to realize the asset and settle the liability simultaneously.

Classification and measurement

A non-derivative financial instrument is initially recognized at fair value plus any transaction costs. The Group classifies its financial instruments based on the purpose for its acquisition. Management decides its classification on initial recognition. The classification of a financial asset determines how it is measured after initial recognition, as described below.

Cash and cash equivalents comprise cash balances and bank deposits, and short-term investments that have a maturity of no more than three months from the date of acquisition, and are exposed only to an insignificant risk of changes in value.

Financial assets and liabilities are classified as follows:

Financial assets and financial liabilities measured at fair value in profit or loss.

Financial assets and financial liabilities held for trading, which comprise all derivatives held by Sandvik to which hedge accounting is not applied. Derivative agreements are entered mainly to hedge the Group’s foreign exchange and interest-rate risks. Derivatives with positive fair values are recognized as other short-term or long-term receivables (unrealized profits), while derivatives with negative fair values are recognized as other short-term or long-term liabilities (unrealized losses).

The assets held for trading consist of investments in listed and non-listed shares. The fair value is determined either by applying the known market value or is determined by applying different calculation methods to determine an estimated fair value with any revaluation is reported in the income statement.

Loans and receivables

Loans and receivables are non-derivative financial assets, with fixed or determinable payments that are not quoted in an active market. Loans and receivables are measured at amortized cost using the effective interest method, less any impairment losses. The effective interest rate is the rate that exactly discounts estimated future cash payments or receipts through the expected life of the financial instrument to the net carrying amount of the financial asset or financial liability. The calculation includes all fees and points paid or received between contractual parties that are an integral part of the effective interest rate, transaction costs, and all other premiums or discounts.

Bad debt provisions are made based on the full lifetime expected credit loss model with a provision matrix where fixed provision rates are applied depending on the number of days outstanding.

The entities consider reasonable and supportable information about past events, current conditions and reasonable and supportable forecasts of future economic conditions when measuring the expected credit losses.

Financial liabilities

Group borrowings are classified as short-term liabilities and long-term liabilities. Borrowings are initially measured at fair value net of transaction costs. Subsequently, borrowings are measured at amortized cost. Any difference between the loan amount, net of transaction costs, and the repayable amount is allocated to profit or loss for the year over the term of the loan using the effective interest method.

Derivatives and hedge accounting

All derivatives are initially recognized at fair value excluding any transaction costs. After initial recognition, derivatives not object to hedge accounting are measured at fair value and the change in value is recognized in profit or loss either as other operating income or expenses or financial income or expenses.

Hedge accounting

To meet the criteria for hedge accounting, there must be a clear-cut relation to the hedged item and the hedge must be expected to be highly effective and it must be possible to measure such effectiveness reliably. Moreover, the hedge must be formally designated and documented. Gains and losses on hedges are recognized in profit or loss for the year while the gains and losses are recognized for the hedged items. Gains and losses on remeasurement of derivatives used for hedging purposes are recognized as described below under cash flow hedges.

Cash flow hedges

Hedge accounting is applied when hedging a particular risk associated with highly probable future cash flows and forecast transactions. The effective portion of the change in fair value for the year, of derivatives that are qualified as cash flow hedges, is recognized in other comprehensive income and the accumulated changes in a separate component of shareholders’ equity. The ineffective portion of a gain or loss is immediately recognized in profit or loss for the year. When the hedged item impacts profit or loss for the year, the accumulated changes in value of the hedging instrument are reclassified to profit or loss for the year.

The accumulated gain or loss recognized in equity is reclassified into profit or loss for the year in the periods during which the hedged item affects profit or loss (for instance, when the forecast sales that are hedged take place). If the hedged forecast transaction subsequently results in the recognition of a non-financial asset (for instance, inventories or an item of property, plant and equipment), or a non-financial liability, the hedging reserve is dissolved, and the gain or loss is included in the operating profit.

Reporting of operating segments

Sandvik’s business is organized in a manner that allows the Group’s chief operating decision maker, meaning the CEO, to monitor results, return and cash flow generated by the various products and services in the Group. Each operating segment has a president that is responsible for day-to-day activities and who regularly reports to the CEO regarding the results of the operating segment’s work and the need for resources. Since the CEO monitors the business’ result and decides on the distribution of resources based on the products the Group manufactures and sells and the services it provides, these constitute the Group’s operating segments.

The Group’s operations are organized in a number of business areas based on products and services. The market organization also reflects this structure. In accordance with IFRS 8, segment information is presented only based on the consolidated financial statements.

Segment results, assets and liabilities include only those items that are directly attributable to the segment and the relevant portions of items that can be allocated on a reasonable basis to the segments. Unallocated items comprise interest and dividend income, gains on disposal of financial investments, interest expense, losses on the disposal of financial investments, income tax expense and certain administrative expenses. Unallocated assets and liabilities include income tax receivables and payables, financial investments and financial liabilities.


Revenue from goods and services

The revenue standard establishes a new five step model of recognizing revenue from customer contracts. It requires revenue to be recognized when control of goods and services are transferred to the customer. The supply of goods and services comprises metal cutting tools, mining equipment, stainless steels, furnaces, installation, support and maintenance.

Customer contracts can include variable considerations such as cash discounts, rebates or right of returns. When Sandvik identifies such components the company determines if the identified portion of revenue and any related cost of goods sold should be deferred to a later period. This is established by determining if a significant revenue reversal might not take place, by applying the expected value method or the most likely amount method with the threshold of being highly probable.

If a customer contract is including a buy-back clause, exercised at the customer discretion and a significant transfer of control has not taken place, the transaction is then accounted for as an operational lease in accordance with IAS 17 Leases. If the customer is not considered having a significant economic incentive to exercise the option, the contract is then accounted for by applying the principles of right of return in IFRS 15.

Sandvik receives advances from customers, if a significant financing component is identified in the contract the company applies the practical expedient of not recognizing any time value of money for advances being performed upon within 12 months. Sandvik also applies the practical expedient of not recognizing a contract asset for costs to obtain a contract, if the customer contract has a duration equal to or shorter than 12 months. Sandvik allocates the transaction price to each identified performance obligation on a relative stand-alone selling price basis. This means that each performance obligation will be allocated its share of revenue based on its stand-alone selling price put in relation to the sum of all performance obligation’s stand-alone selling price. Sandvik usually applies the methods Adjusted market assessment approach and Expected cost plus a margin approach to determine the stand-alone selling price if not observable for one or more of the performance obligations. Variable consideration is generally allocated proportionally to all performance obligations unless there is evidence that the entire discount does not relate to all performance obligations in the contract.

Sandvik recognizes revenue over time when any of the three over time indicators are identified as being fulfilled the customer simultaneously receives and consumes all the benefits provided by the entity as the entity performs; the entity’s performance creates or enhances an asset that the customer controls as the asset is created; or the entity’s performance does not create an asset with an alternative use to the entity and the entity has an enforceable right to payment for performance completed to date. Goods are recognized over time most often under the criteria the entity’s performance does not create an asset with an alternative use to the entity and the entity has an enforceable right to payment for performance completed to date. Service contracts recognized over time are identified under the criteria the customer simultaneously receives and consumes all of the benefits provided by the entity as the entity performs. Sandvik applies both the Input and Output method to determine the progress and when revenue should be recognized. The output method is only applied to service contracts by applying the expedient allowing revenue to be recognized in line with amounts that correspond directly with the value to the customer and to which the entity has the right to invoice. The majority of Sandvik’s revenues are recognized at a point in time. The transfer of control is identified taking place when any of the five available indicators are fulfilled: significant risks and rewards of ownership, transferred physical possession, the customer has accepted the asset, present right to payment and legal title of goods and services. For sale of goods the transfer of control occurs usually according to the risk and reward criteria by applying Incoterms. For sale of services the transfer of control usually occurs when the customer has accepted the performed service.

Other revenue

Revenue in the form of royalty is recognized on the basis of the financial implications of the agreement.

Government grants

Government grants are recognized as deferred income in the balance sheet when there is reasonable assurance that the grant will be received, and that the entity will comply with the conditions attached to them. Grants are recognized in profit or loss for the year in the same way and over the same periods as the related costs that they are intended to compensate, on a systematic basis. Grants related to assets are presented by deducting the grant from the carrying amount of the asset.

Financial income and expenses

Financial expenses consists of interest expense on borrowings, interest income and expenses on interest swaps that are recognized net as an interest expense. Credit losses on financial assets and foreign exchange gains and losses on hedging instruments are recognized in profit or loss for the year.

Income tax

Income tax comprises current and deferred tax. Income tax is recognized in profit or loss for the year except when the underlying transaction is recognized in other comprehensive income. In these cases, the associated tax effects are recognized in other comprehensive income.

Current tax is the expected tax payable on the taxable income for the year, using tax rates enacted at the balance sheet date, and any adjustment to tax payable in respect of previous years.

Current tax liabilities are offset against current tax receivables and deferred tax assets are offset against deferred tax liabilities when the entity has a legal right to offset these items.

Deferred tax is recognized based on temporary differences between the carrying amounts of assets and liabilities for financial reporting purposes and their value for tax purposes. Deferred taxes are measured at their nominal amount and based on the expected manner of realization or settlement of the carrying amount of the underlying assets and liabilities, using tax rates and fiscal regulations enacted or substantively enacted at the balance sheet date.

Deferred tax assets relating to deductible temporary differences and tax loss carry-forwards are recognized only to the extent that it is probable they can be utilized against future taxable profits.

Intangible assets


Goodwill acquired in a business combination represents the excess of the cost of the business combination over the net fair value of the identifiable assets, liabilities and contingent liabilities recognized.

Goodwill is measured at cost less any accumulated impairment losses. Goodwill is allocated to cash-generating units and an annual impairment test is made in the fourth quarter or when there is an indication of impairment. Impairment losses on goodwill are not reversed. Goodwill arising on the acquisition of an associated company is included in the carrying amount of participations in associated companies.

Research and development

Expenditure on research activities related to the obtaining of new scientific or technical knowledge is expensed as incurred. Expenditure on development activities, whereby the research results or other knowledge is applied to accomplish new or improved products or processes, is recognized as an intangible asset in the balance sheet, provided the product or process is technically and commercially feasible and the company has sufficient resources to complete development, and is subsequently able to use or sell the intangible asset.

The carrying amount includes the directly attributable expenditure, such as the cost of materials and services, costs of employee benefits, fees to register intellectual property rights and amortization of patents and licenses. Other expenses for development are expensed as incurred. In the balance sheet, capitalized development expenditure is stated at cost less accumulated amortization and any impairment losses.

Other intangible assets

Other intangible assets acquired by the company are recognized at cost less accumulated amortization and any impairment losses. Capitalized expenditure for the development and purchase of software for the Group’s IT operations are included here.

Intangible assets also include patents, trademarks, licenses, customer relationships and other rights. They are split between acquired and internally generated intangible assets.

Amortization of intangible assets

Amortization is charged to profit or loss for the year on a straight-line basis over the estimated useful lives of intangible assets unless such lives are indefinite. Intangible assets with an indefinite useful life are systematically tested for impairment annually or as soon as there is an indication that the asset may be impaired. Intangible assets with a finite useful life are amortized as of the date the asset is available for use.

The estimated useful lives are as follows:

  • Patents and trademarks 10–20 years
  • Customer relationships 10 years
  • Capitalized development costs 3–7 years
  • Software for IT operations 3 years

Property, plant and equipment

Owned assets

Property, plant and equipment are recognized at cost less accumulated depreciation and any impairment losses.

Leased assets

In the consolidated financial statements, leases are classified as either finance leases or operating leases. Further details on how Sandvik recognizes leases are found as follows:

Depreciation of tangible assets

Depreciation is based on cost less estimated residual value. The assets are depreciated over the estimated useful lives, as follows:

  • Plant and machinery is generally depreciated on a straight-line basis over 5–10 years
  • Rental assets over 3 years
  • Buildings over 10–50 years
  • Site improvements over 20 years
  • Land is regarded as having an indefinite useful life
  • Computer equipment is depreciated over 3–5 years using the reducing balance method

If an item of property, plant and equipment comprises components with different useful lives, each such significant component is depreciated separately. Depreciation methods and estimated residual values and useful lives are reviewed at each year-end.

Impairment and borrowing costs

Impairment and reversals of impairment

Assets with an indefinite useful life are not amortized but tested annually for impairment. Assets that are amortized or depreciated are tested for impairment whenever events or changed circumstances indicate that the carrying amount may not be recoverable. An impairment loss is recognized in the amount by which the carrying amount of an asset exceeds its recoverable amount, which is the greater of the fair value less selling costs and value in use.

In assessing value in use, the estimated future cash flows are discounted to their present value using a rate that reflects current market assessments of the time value of money and the risks specific to the asset. For an asset that does not generate largely independent cash inflows, the recoverable amount is determined for the cash-generating unit to which the asset belongs.

In respect to items of property, plant and equipment and intangible fixed assets, an impairment loss is reversed if there has been a change in the estimates used to determine the recoverable amount. An impairment loss in respect to goodwill is not reversed. An impairment loss is reversed only to the extent that the asset’s carrying amount does not exceed the carrying amount that would have been determined, net of depreciation and amortization, if no impairment loss had been recognized.

Borrowing costs for intangible and tangible assets

Borrowing costs attributable to the construction of qualifying assets are capitalized as a portion of the qualifying asset’s cost. A qualifying asset is an asset that takes a substantial time period to get ready for its intended use or sale. The Group considers a period in excess of one year to be a substantial time period. For the Group, the capitalization of borrowing costs relating to intangibles is mainly relevant for capitalized expenditure for the development of new data systems. For tangibles it relates to the construction of production buildings on a proprietary basis.


Inventories are stated at the lowest end of cost and net realizable value, with due consideration of obsolescence. Net realizable value is the estimated selling price in the ordinary course of business, less the estimated costs of completion and selling expenses.

Cost is based on the first-in/first-out (FIFO) principle and includes expenditure incurred in acquiring the inventories and bringing them to their existing location and condition. In the case of manufactured inventories and work in progress, cost includes an appropriate share of overheads based on normal operating capacity.


Dividends are recognized as a liability in the period in which they are resolved at a shareholders’ meeting.

Earnings per share

The calculation of basic earnings per share is based on the profit or loss attributable to ordinary equity holders of the Parent Company and the weighted average number of ordinary shares outstanding during the year. When calculating diluted earnings per share, the weighted average number of shares outstanding is adjusted for the effects of all dilutive potential ordinary shares, which during reported periods relates to share-based payment arrangements issued to employees. The shared-based awards are dilutive if the exercise price is less than the quoted stock price and increases with the size of the difference.

Employee benefits

The Group’s pension plans

The Group sponsors a number of defined-contribution and defined-benefit pension plans, some of which have plan assets held by separate foundations or equivalent. A number of Group entities also provide post-employment medical benefits.

Whenever possible, Sandvik nowadays seeks defined contribution pension solutions and in recent years defined-benefit plans have as far as possible been closed for new entrants in connection with negotiations about defined-contribution pension arrangements.

Defined-contribution plans

A defined-contribution plan is a post-employment benefit plan under which an entity pays fixed contributions into a separate entity and will have no legal or constructive obligation to pay further amounts. The size of the pension that the employee will ultimately receive in such cases depends on the size of the contributions that the entity pays to the plan or an insurance company and the return that the contributions yield. Obligations for contributions to defined-contribution pension plans are recognized as an employee benefit expense in profit or loss for the year as the employee renders services to the entity.

Defined-benefit plans

The Group’s net obligation in respect of defined-benefit pension plans is calculated separately for each plan by estimating the amount of future benefit that employees have vested in return for their service in the current and prior periods. This benefit is discounted to its present value. The discount rate is the yield on high-quality corporate bonds, mortgage bonds – or if there is no deep market for such bonds, government bonds – that have maturity dates approximating the terms of the Group’s obligations. The calculation is performed annually by a qualified actuary. In addition, the fair value of any plan assets is assessed. This method of accounting is applied to the most significant defined-benefit plans in the Group. A number of plans, which neither individually nor in the aggregate are significant in relation to the Group’s total pension obligations, are still recognized in accordance with local regulations.

In measuring the present value of pension obligations and the fair value of plan assets, actuarial gains and losses may accrue either because the actual outcome differs from earlier assumptions (so-called experience adjustments) or the assumptions are changed. These actuarial gains and losses are recognized in the balance sheet and in profit or loss under other comprehensive income.

When the benefits under a plan are improved, the portion of the increased benefits that relate to past service by employees is recognized in profit or loss for the year. The amount of obligations recognized in the balance sheet for pensions and similar obligations reflects the present value of the obligations at the balance sheet date, less the fair value of any plan assets.

Pension assumptions

Actuarial assumptions are important ingredients in the actuarial methods used to measure pension obligations and they can significantly affect the recognized net liability and the annual pension cost. One critical assumption – the discount rate – is essential for the measurement of both the expense of the year and the present value of the defined-benefit obligations’ current year. The discount rate is used both for calculating the present value of the obligation and as an estimate for the return on plan assets. The discount rate is reviewed quarterly, which affects the net liability, and annually, which also affects the expense for coming years. Other assumptions are reviewed annually, which can relate to demographic factors such as pension age, mortality rates and employee turnover. A lower discount rate increases the present value of the pension obligation and the annual pension cost.

Termination benefits

When employment is terminated, a provision is recognized only when the entity is demonstrably committed either to terminate the employment of an employee or a group of employees before the normal retirement age or provide termination benefits as a result of an offer made to encourage voluntary redundancy. In the latter case, a liability and an expense are recognized if it is probable that the offer will be accepted and the number of employees that will accept the offer can be reliably estimated.

Share-based payments

Share-based payments refer to remuneration to employees in accordance with employee option program and share saving programs.

The remaining share option program allows employees to acquire shares in the company. The fair value of options granted is recognized as an employee expense with a corresponding increase in equity. The fair value as measured at the grant date is spread over the vesting period. The fair value of the options is measured using the Black-Scholes formula, taking into account the terms and conditions upon which the options were granted. The share-based programs include two types of rights. Matching share rights provide entitlement to shares in Sandvik if the participant remains employed and retains the saving share that has been purchased initially. Performance share rights provide entitlement to shares subject to the same conditions and if goals relating to operating performance are achieved.

The amount recognized as an expense is adjusted to reflect the actual number of share options/rights vested.

In order to meet its commitments under the option program, Sandvik has entered into an equity swap agreement with a financial institution. Under the agreement, the financial institution undertakes to distribute Sandvik shares to participants in the program when the date for allotment occurs in accordance with the terms and conditions of the program. The fair value of the Sandvik share when the swap agreement was signed is recognized as a financial liability and as a reduction of equity in accordance with IAS 32.

Social costs relating to share-based payments to employees are expensed over the accounting periods during which the services are provided. The charge is based on the fair value of the options at the reporting date. The fair value is calculated using the same formula as that used when the options were granted.


A provision is recognized in the balance sheet when the Group has a legal or constructive obligation as a result of a past event, and it is probable that an outflow of resources will be required to settle the obligation, and a reliable estimate of the amount can be made. If the effect is material, the provision is determined by discounting the expected future cash flows at a pre-tax rate that reflects the current market assessments of the time value of money and, where appropriate, the risks specific to the liability. The provisions are mainly related to warranty commitments, restructuring, environmental obligations, long-term incentives and legal disputes and claims, such as value-added tax issues, and customer and supplier claims relating to ongoing or finished projects.


A provision for warranties is recognized when the underlying products or services are sold. The provision is based on historical warranty data and a weighing of all possible outcomes with their associated probabilities.


A provision for restructuring is recognized when the Group has approved a detailed and formal restructuring plan, and the restructuring has either commenced or has been announced publicly. No provision is posted for future operating costs.

Site restoration

In accordance with the Group’s published environmental policy and applicable legal requirements, a provision for site restoration in respect to contaminated land is recognized when land has become contaminated.

Onerous contracts

A provision for onerous contracts is recognized when the expected benefits to be derived by the Group are lower than the unavoidable cost of meeting its obligations under the contract.

Contingent liabilities

A contingent liability is recognized when there is a possible obligation that arises from past events and whose existence will be confirmed only by the occurrence or non-occurrence of one or more uncertain future events or when there is a present obligation that cannot be recognized as a liability because it is not probable that an outflow of resources will be required, alternatively because the amount of the obligation cannot be measured with sufficient reliability.

Discontinued operations

To qualify as Discontinued operations, a component of the Sandvik Group must have been classified as held for sale and represent a separate major line of business or be a part of a single coordinated plan to dispose of a separate major line of business. Product area Mining Systems within business area Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology is classified as discontinued operation and reported as held for sale. The discontinued operation is measured at fair value less cost to sell. See Consolidated financial statements and Notes for further information.


There are two basic categories of leases, financial and operational. Lease contract terms, under which the lessor has transferred the majority of the risks and rewards of ownership to the lessee, are classified as finance leases. All other leases are classified as operating leases.

Sandvik as a lessee

Under a finance lease, the lessee recognizes the leased asset measured at the lower end of its fair value and the present value of future lease payments. Simultaneously, a liability corresponding to future lease expenses is recognized. The asset is depreciated according to the proper accounting policy valid for the type of asset. However, depreciation may never exceed the lease term. The lease payments are recognized against the lease liability. Operating leases are not recognized in the balance sheet. Expenses attributable to an operating lease are recognized in profit or loss for the year on a straight-line basis following the lease term.

Sandvik as a lessor

Under a finance lease, the lessor recognizes a sale and a financial receivable equal to the future lease installments and residual values that might have been guaranteed to the lessee. For the duration of the lease term, interest revenue is recognized in profit or loss for the year, while amortization is recognized as a decline of the financial receivable. Under an operating lease, the lessor recognizes the equipment as an asset, and revenue and depreciation are recognized on a straight-line basis over the lease term.

Parent Company’s accounting policies

The Parent Company has prepared its Annual Report in accordance with the Annual Accounts Act (1995:1554) and the standard, RFR 2 Reporting by a legal entity, issued by the Swedish Financial Reporting Board. The interpretations issued by the Financial Reporting Board valid for listed companies have also been applied. Under RFR 2, the Parent Company in its Annual Report is to apply all the IFRS and IFRIC interpretations approved by the EU to the extent possible within the framework of the Annual Accounts Act, the Act on Income Security, and taking into account the close tie between financial reporting and taxation. The standard specifies what exceptions from or additions to the IFRS shall be made.

Changed accounting policies

Unless otherwise stated below, the Parent Company’s accounting policies in 2018 changed in accordance with the amendments described above for the Group’s accounting policies.

Classification and presentation

The Parent Company’s income statement and balance sheet adhere to the presentation included in the Annual Accounts Act. The differences compared with IAS 1 Presentation of Financial Statements applied when presenting the consolidated financial statements mainly pertain to the presentation of finance income and expenses, non-current assets, equity and the presentation of provisions as a separate heading in the balance sheet.

Shares in Group companies and associated companies

The Parent Company recognizes shares in Group companies and associated companies in accordance with the cost model, meaning that transaction costs are included in the carrying amount of holdings in subsidiaries and associated companies. Transaction costs related to shares in Group companies are recognized directly in profit or loss in the consolidated financial statements when they arise. Contingent consideration is valued based on the probability that the consideration will be paid. Any changes in the provision/ receivable are added to/deducted from the cost. Contingent consideration is measured at fair value in the consolidated financial statements with changes in value recognized in profit or loss. Dividends from subsidiaries are recognized in full as income in profit or loss for the year.

Leased assets

The Parent Company recognizes all lease contracts according to the rules for operating leases.

Intangible assets

The Parent Company recognizes all expenditure for research and development conducted on a proprietary basis as an expense in profit or loss.

Borrowing costs

In the Parent Company, borrowing costs are expensed in the periods to which they relate. Borrowing costs for assets are not capitalized.

Employee benefits

The Parent Company calculates expenses for defined-benefit pension plans differently from the manner prescribed in IAS 19. The Parent Company applies the Act on Income Security and regulations issued by the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority, which is a prerequisite for income tax purposes. Compared to IAS 19, the most significant differences relate to the determination of the discount rate and the fact that the obligation is calculated based on the current salary level disregarding assumptions about future levels.

Income tax

The Parent Company recognizes untaxed reserves including the deferred tax component.

In the consolidated financial statements, untaxed reserves are recognized in their equity and deferred tax components. Correspondingly, portions of appropriations are not allocated to deferred tax expenses in the Parent Company’s income statement.

Group contributions and shareholders’ contributions in legal entity accounts

Group contributions that a Parent Company receives from a subsidiary are recognized in the Parent Company in accordance with the same policies as normal dividends from subsidiaries. Group contributions paid by the Parent Company to subsidiaries are recognized as investments in shares in the subsidiaries.

Anticipated dividends

Anticipated dividends from subsidiaries are recognized in cases where the Parent Company unilaterally may determine the size of the dividend and provided that the Parent Company has made such a decision before it published its financial statements.

Financial guarantees

The Parent Company applies a relaxation rule permitted by the Swedish Financial Reporting Board to the reporting of financial guarantees as opposed to the rules stipulated by IFRS 9. This relaxation rule pertains to financial guarantee agreements issued for the benefit of subsidiaries, associated companies and joint ventures. The Parent Company recognizes financial guarantees as a provision in the balance sheet when the company has an obligation for which payment is probably necessary to settle the commitment.

Critical accounting estimates and judgments

Key sources of estimation uncertainty

In order to prepare the financial statements, management and the Board make various judgments and estimates that can affect the amounts recognized in the financial statements for assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses as well as information in general, including issues with regard to contingent liabilities. The judgments and estimates discussed in this section are those deemed to be most important for an understanding of the financial statements, considering the level of significant estimations and uncertainty. The conditions under which Sandvik operates are gradually changing meaning that the judgments also change.

Impairment tests of goodwill

Goodwill is tested for impairment annually and whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of goodwill has been impaired, for example due to a changed business climate or a decision taken either to sell or close down certain operations. In order to determine if the value of goodwill has been impaired, the cash-generating unit to which goodwill has been allocated must be valued using present value techniques. When applying this valuation technique, the Company relies on a number of factors, including historical results, business plans, forecasts and market data. This is further described in Note 12. As can be deduced from this description, changes in the conditions for these judgments and estimates can significantly affect the assessed value of goodwill.

Impairment tests of other non-current assets

Sandvik’s property, plant and equipment and intangible assets – excluding goodwill – are stated at cost less accumulated depreciation/amortization and any impairment losses. Other than goodwill, Sandvik has not identified any intangible assets with indefinite useful lives. The assets are depreciated or amortized over their estimated useful lives to their estimated residual values. Both the estimated useful life and the residual value are reviewed at least at each financial year-end.

The carrying amount of the Group’s non-current assets is tested for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount will not be recovered. The carrying amount of intangible assets not yet available for use is tested annually. If such analysis indicates an excessive carrying amount, the recoverable amount of the asset is estimated. The recoverable amount is the higher of the asset’s fair value less selling costs, and its value in use. Value in use is measured as the discounted future cash flows of the asset, alternatively the cash-generating unit to which the asset belongs. The rental fleets of Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology are subject to special examination considering their dependence on the business climate in the mining- and oil industry and the risk that rental agreements may be cancelled. The carrying amount of the rental fleets at the end of 2018 was 943 million SEK (836).

A call for an impairment test also arises when a non-current asset is classified as being held for sale, at which time it must be remeasured at the lower of its carrying amount and fair value less cost to sell.

Income tax

Significant estimates are made to determine both current and deferred tax liabilities/assets, not least the value of deferred tax assets. The company must then determine the possibility that deferred tax assets will be utilized and offset against future taxable profits. The actual results may differ from these estimates, for instance due to changes in the business climate, changed tax legislation, or the outcome of the final review by tax authorities and tax courts of tax returns. At year-end 2018, Sandvik recognized deferred tax assets of 3,150 million SEK (4,203). Furthermore, the Group had additional tax loss carry-forward of about 3,038 million SEK (1,663) at the end of 2018 for which no deferred tax assets are recognized since utilization of these losses is not deemed probable. A change in the estimate of the possibility for utilization thus can affect results both positively and negatively. The expenditure recognized as a provision for ongoing tax litigations is based on management’s best estimate of the outcome, and amounted to 1,457 million SEK (1,722) at the end of 2018.

Post-employment benefits

Sandvik provides pension solutions and other post-employment benefits to employees throughout the Group. In certain countries defined-benefit plans are provided and the accounting for these plans is complex because actuarial assumptions are required to determine the obligation and the expense. Life expectancy, inflation and discount rate are examples of assumptions used for the calculations. Furthermore, the obligations are measured on a discounted basis since they may be settled many years after the employment. The applied actuarial assumptions as well as a sensitivity analysis are presented in Note 20. Some of the defined-benefit plans are funded, with plan assets held by separate foundations or the equivalent. The financial risk management associated with the defined-benefit plans are presented in the Directors’ Report in the section Financial Risk Management.


Sandvik is besides the tax litigation cases set out above – party to a number of disputes and legal proceedings in the ordinary course of business. Management consults with legal experts on issues related to legal disputes and with other experts internal or external to the Company on issues related to the ordinary course of business. It is management’s best estimate that neither the Parent Company, nor any subsidiary, is involved in legal proceedings or arbitration that may be deemed to have a materially negative effect on the business, the financial position or results of operations.

For additional information on risks related to disputes, refer to the Enterprise Risk Management section.