Why do capital expenditures increase assets (PP&E), while other cash outflows, like paying salary, taxes, etc., do not create any asset, and instead instantly create an expense on the income statement



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Capital expenditures are capitalized because of the timing of their estimated benefits – the lemonade stand will benefit the firm for many years. The employees’ work, on the other hand, benefits the period in which the wages are generated only and should be expensed then. This is what differentiates an asset from an expense.