Whole Foods Market Inc.

Published 10 Jan 2006
Reference 5405
Region North America
Summary

This case focuses on Whole Foods Market Inc. and how it accounts for its leases, in particular whether or not it should capitalize its operating leases. The case write-up includes a company history, Whole Foods Market property, and the accounting controversy related to FASB Statement No. 13. The case also includes various exhibits for the user to analyze: Whole Foods stock price graph; various Whole Foods financial statements; Whole Foods footnotes on growth strategy, properties, property and equipment, and leases; and Whole Foods financial highlights.

Teaching objectives

The objective of this case is for the user to better understand lease accounting, specifically the implication of off balance sheet liabilities on a company's financial performance. Also, the user is asked to answer three questions: 1) Is Whole Foods underreporting its liabilities and assets; 2) Should analysts recast the financials by capitalizing the operating leases; and 3) What are the relevant factors to consider when making such decisions?

Keywords
  • RD0906
  • AR0607
  • AR2006