A 12-month period
over which a company budgets
its spending. A fiscal year does not always begin in January and end in December; it may run over any period of 12 months. The fiscal year is referred to by the date in which it ends
. For example, if a company's fiscal year ends October 31, 2006, then everything between November 1, 2005 and October 31, 2006 would be referred to as FY 2006. Not using the actual calendar year
gives many companies
an advantage, allowing them to close their books
at a time which is most convenient for them.