The Accounting Equation: Key to Understanding Financials

The revenue a company shareholder can claim after debts have been paid is Shareholder Equity. An organisation ABC wish to buy a ₹500 manufacturing machine using cash. This deal will result in debt of (-₹500) for equipment and (+₹500) as a credit to cash. The accounting equation on the basis of a balance sheet can be calculated as.

  1. The major and often largest value assets of most companies are that company’s machinery, buildings, and property.
  2. Retained Earnings is Beginning Retained Earnings + Revenue – Expenses – Dividends – Stock Repurchases.
  3. (1) as claims by creditors against the company’s assets, and
    (2) as sources (along with owner’s or stockholders’ equity) of the company’s assets.
  4. As the fintech industry continues to expand, memorizing accounting equations will become obsolete.

All assets owned by a business are acquired with the funds supplied either by creditors or by owner(s). In other words, we can say that the value of assets in a business is always equal to the sum of the value of liabilities and owner’s equity. The total dollar amounts of two sides of accounting equation are always equal because they represent two different views of the same thing. The accounting equation uses total assets, total liabilities, and total equity in the calculation.

Impact of transactions on accounting equation

This equation holds true for all business activities and transactions. If assets increase, either liabilities or owner’s equity must increase to balance out the equation. You can automatically generate and send invoices using this accounting software.

Current assets and liabilities can be converted into cash within one year. However, each partner generally has unlimited personal liability for any kind of obligation for the business (for example, debts and accidents). Some common partnerships include doctor’s offices, boutique investment banks, and small legal firms. From the Statement of Stockholders’ Equity, Alphabet’s share repurchases can be seen.

Said a different way, liabilities are creditors’ claims on company assets because this is the amount of assets creditors would own if the company liquidated. Now that we have a basic understanding of the equation, let’s take a look at each accounting equation component starting with the assets. It’s essentially the same equation because net worth and owner’s equity are synonymous with each other.

Merely placing an order for goods is not a recordable transaction because no exchange has taken place. In the coming sections, you will learn more about the different kinds of financial statements accountants generate for businesses. For example, if your company borrows $10,000 from a bank, its assets (cash) increase by $10,000, but its liabilities (loan) also increase by $10,000. The accounting equation remains balanced as both sides change by the same amount. The accounting equation is one of the most fundamental concepts in accounting.

Accounting Equation

Retained Earnings is Beginning Retained Earnings + Revenue – Expenses – Dividends – Stock Repurchases. Ted is an entrepreneur who wants to start a company selling speakers for car stereo systems. After saving up money for a year, Ted decides it is time to officially start his business. He forms Speakers, Inc. and contributes $100,000 to the company in exchange for all of its newly issued shares. This business transaction increases company cash and increases equity by the same amount.

Essentially, the representation equates all uses of capital (assets) to all sources of capital, where debt capital leads to liabilities and equity capital leads to shareholders’ equity. The accounting equation is a concise expression of the complex, expanded, and multi-item display of a balance sheet. It can be defined as the total number of dollars that a company would have left if it liquidated all of its assets and paid off all of its liabilities. The Accounting Equation is a vital formula to understand and consider when it comes to the financial health of your business. The accounting equation is a factor in almost every aspect of your business accounting.

Accounting Equation Examples

In other words, the total amount of all assets will always equal the sum of liabilities and shareholders’ equity. Assets represent the valuable resources controlled by a company, while liabilities represent its obligations. Both liabilities and shareholders’ equity represent how the assets of a company are financed. If it’s financed through debt, it’ll show as a liability, but if it’s financed through issuing equity shares to investors, it’ll show in shareholders’ equity. So, let’s take a look at every element of  the accounting equation. Accounting Cycle is very important for every business looking for a seamless accounting process.

This equation is the foundation of modern double entry system of accounting being used by small proprietors to large multinational corporations. Other names used for this equation are balance sheet equation and fundamental or basic accounting equation. Companies compute the accounting equation from their balance sheet. They prove that the financial statements balance and the double-entry accounting system works.

Double-entry accounting is a system where every transaction affects at least two accounts. The shareholders’ equity number is a company’s total assets minus its total liabilities. The accounting equation states that the amount of assets must be equal to liabilities plus shareholder or owner equity.


Their share repurchases impact both the capital and retained earnings balances. Receivables arise when a company provides a service or sells a product to someone on credit. Because of the two-fold effect of business transactions, the equation always stays in balance. Want to learn more about recording transactions and doing accounting for your small business?

Difference between the Accounting Cycle and Budget Cycle

In above example, we have observed the impact of twelve different transactions on accounting equation. The accounting equation is a fundamental principle of accounting. It expresses the relationship between a company’s assets, liabilities, and equity and is the foundation for preparing and analyzing financial statements. The intuit wage calculator accounting equation equates a company’s assets to its liabilities and equity. This shows all company assets are acquired by either debt or equity financing. For example, when a company is started, its assets are first purchased with either cash the company received from loans or cash the company received from investors.