3 Financial Statements

How The Big 3 Financial Statements Link Together

There are 3 main financial statements you should know:

  1. The balance sheet statement
  2. The income statement
  3. The cash flow statement

Balance Sheet Statement

The balance sheet shows a financial snapshot of the business at a specific point in time, usually at the beginning and end of an accounting period. It sets out the assets of the business and how they have been funded. It tells you what your business is worth at book value.

The general format of the balance sheet is governed by the accounting equation as follows:

Assets = Liabilities + Equity

The top part of the balance sheet is the assets of the business, property, machinery, fixtures, inventory, debtors, cash etc. The bottom part of the balance sheet shows how those assets have been funded by liabilities such as supplier credit, bank loans, and by equity. Equity includes capital injected by the owners of the business and retained earnings from the trade of the business.

3 Financial Statements : Balance Sheet Statement
Opening Closing
Cash 60 100
Other assets 640 620
Assets 700 720
Liabilites 300 265
Capital 150 150
Retained earnings 250 305
Liabilities + Equity 700 720

Income Statement

The income statement shows a business’s financial performance over an accounting period. The accounting period can be any length but is usually a month or a year.

The income statement is used to tell whether a business has made a profit or a loss for the period, and follows the general format of Revenue – Expenses = Profit.

It tells you what profit is left for you, the owner of the business.

3 Financial Statements: Income Statement
Revenue 100
Expenses -45
Profit 55

The income statement may also be referred to as the profit and loss account, the earnings statement, or the income and expenditure statement, they all mean the same thing.

Notice that the movement between the opening and closing retained earnings (highlighted blue) in the balance sheet is 305 – 250 = 55, which is the profit for the period shown by the income statement.

Cash Flow Statement

The Cash Flow Statement shows a business’s cash inflow and cash outflow over an accounting period. The accounting period can be any length but is usually a month or a year. The cash flow statement tells you whether you have the cash to pay your bills.

Cash flows in include receipts from the trade of the business, new loans, and new equity. Cash flows out of the business include payments for expenses of the business, fixed assets, loan repayments etc.

3 Financial Statements:,Cash Flow Statement
Cash flow in 90
Cash flow out -50
Net cash received / (paid) 40

The net cash received or paid during the accounting period is referred to as the cash flow. In the above example, the cash flow is 40 into the business.

Notice that the movement between the opening and closing balance sheet cash balances (highlighted in green on the balance sheet), is 100 – 60 = 40 increase, which is the same as the cash flow of the business for the period shown in the cash flow statement.

3 Financial Statements Connected

There are 3 financial statements which you need to understand to operate your business effectively, the income statement, balance sheet statement, and the cash flow statement.

The balance sheet statement shows the assets of a business and how they have been funded by liabilities and equity at a particular point in time, usually the beginning and end of the accounting period.

The income statement shows the profit of the business for the period, which is equal to the movement on the retained earnings account between the opening and closing balance sheets.

The cash flow statement shows the net cash in or out of the business for the period, and the cash flow is equal to the movement on the cash balance between the opening and closing balance sheets.

3 Financial Statements Examples

The 3 financial statements change in presentation and format depending on the business involved, and the purpose of the 3 financial statements. A typical example of each for a quoted business is shown in the annual report for Apple in the links below.

  1. Annual report for apple balance sheet statement
  2. Annual report for apple income statement
  3. Annual report for apple cash flow statement

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