Cost variance (CV) is one of the measures of how the project compares to what was expected. It is calculated as

CV = EV - AC

that is, the cost variance is the amount that the project was expected to cost (earned value or EV) to a certain point minus the amount it actually costed (actual cost or AC). the cost variance for the entire project is the budget at completion (BAC) minus the actual cost of the entire project.

The CV is used as part of earned value management.

Related: cost, cost baseline, baseline Other variance measures: schedule variance, schedule performance index, cost performance index

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