Accounting basics: the profit and loss and balance sheet reports

Accounting Services Logan Australia

Understanding your finances is a vital part of running your business. But getting down into the nitty gritty of the company accounts isn’t every entrepreneur’s top skill. If you are new to company accounting, or simply want to expand your knowledge, we can help explain the foundational reports.

The profit and loss report and the balance sheet are both key reports when it comes to getting in control of your company’s financial health.

What’s a profit and loss statement?

Your profit and loss statement is commonly called your P&L, but is also referred to as your income statement or statement of earnings. It’s a full breakdown of your company’s revenue (money coming into the company as sales and other business income) and your expenditure (direct costs, overheads, expenses and other costs).

As a business, you obviously want to turn a profit and make money from your venture. Careful observation of your P&L allows you to track your revenues and expenses over a set period of time. You can then look back over the period and see exactly where you’re making money, and where you’re losing money. The more you make, and the less you lose, the greater your profits will be at year-end – and your P&L is your barometer for measuring these metrics.

The P&L statement is good for:

  • Giving you a breakdown of all revenues and relevant costs and expenses
  • Showing the profit and loss figures over a set period of time
  • Summing up your profit and loss for the period to gauge if you’re profitable.

What’s the balance sheet?

The balance sheet gives you a snapshot of your company’s financial health at a given point in time, based on the following accounting equation: ‘Equity = Assets – Liabilities’

The balance sheet shows shows you the company’s:

  • Assets (the things the company owns, including cash)
  • Liabilities (the things the company owes other people)
  • Equity (retained earnings plus the funds you originally invested as shareholders)

Unlike the P&L – which shows you the revenues and expenditure over the course of a given historic period – the balance sheet is best seen as a ‘screenshot’ of your current finances. In a nutshell, it shows you what the company is worth on paper right now, based on the current numbers in your accounts. So it’s a vital tool in your accounting toolbox.

The balance sheet is helpful for:

  • Assessing the current financial position of the company
  • Providing evidence of your financial position to banks, lenders and investors
  • Giving potential buyers an idea of the company’s tangible net asset value, if you plan to sell up.

Talk to us about expanding your accounting skills

If you don’t know your assets from your equity, we don’t blame you. Accounting can be complicated and it takes time to fully grasp all the different terms and processes.

But if you’d like to know more about the basics of your company accounts, we can help. We’ll be happy to run you through your latest management or statutory accounts and explain exactly what each report means – and how it reflects your current performance as a business.

Get in touch to find out more about your accounts.

Acro Accounting & Financial Planning (AAFP) offers a one stop solution right from accounting, taxation, financial planning to other business advisory services. As Certified Practicing Accountants (CPA’s) and professional tax advisors, we pride ourselves on being experts with the latest developments relating to business and taxation. We as professional public practice firm, provide high quality taxation and business advice to our clients through a personalised service at competitive rates.

Related Articles

accounting and financial planning
Every business can benefit from cloud accounting, no matter how big or small. Cloud accounting is more than just a buzzword though.
Understanding Your Balance Sheet
Are you confident in understanding the financial snapshot of your balance sheet? Book a session now to analyse your reports with an experienced business advisor.
The value of cashflow forecasting during a crisis
A business cash flow forecast will give you vital business intelligence to help you scenario-plan, search for cost-savings and look for strategies that will preserve your cashflow position. Let’s talk.
Reporting Cryptocurrency Transactions at Tax Time
Crypto transactions are on the ATO radar. Tax and GST rules apply the same to crypto as to other forms of payment, just like bartering. Talk to us about getting your crypto transaction records together for your tax return.

Take the first step to grow your business

We work with you and provide ongoing help and support with regards to financial and tax matters and to ensure you realise your goals as you move throughout your personal and professional life.

CONTACT US

Portal Office Park Unit 5A, 2994 Logan Rd

Cnr Lexington Rd, Underwood QLD 4119

P.O. Box 1147, Springwood QLD 4127

Mon-Fri, 8am-5pm

Sat, 8am-12pm

DISCLAIMERS

Legal Advice Disclaimer

The information on this website is of a general nature only and has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situation or needs.


Before selecting any product or service or acting on any advice, you should consider the appropriateness of the advice having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs.


If any information in this publication relates to a particular product or service, you should obtain any relevant disclosure statement for that product or service before making a decision about whether to acquire the product or service.

Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislations.

Corporate Authorisation Representative

Mohammed Saheed (308525) and Acro Financial Services Pty Ltd t/a Acro Wealth Management (1246594) are Authorised Representative of Lifespan Financial Planning Pty Ltd ABN 23 065 921 735, AFSL No. 229892, ACL No. 229892, Level 23, 25 Bligh Street, SYDNEY NSW 2000.

© 2021 Acro Accounting & Financial Planning

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This