Financial statements are the final product of the accounting process. They provide information on the financial condition of a company. The balance sheet, one type of financial statement, provides a summary of what a company owns and what it owes on one particular day.

Assets represent everything of value that is owned by a business, such as property, equipment, and accounts receivable. On the other hand, liabilities are the debts that a company owes-for example, to suppliers and banks. If liabilities are subtracted from assets (assets – liabilities), the amount remaining is the owners’ share of a business. This is known as owners’ or stockholders’ equity.

One key to understanding the accounting transactions of business is to understand the relationship of its assets, liabilities, and owners’ equity. This is often represented by the fundamental accounting equation: assets equal liabilities plus owners’ equity.


These three factors are expressed in monetary terms and therefore are limited to items that can be given a monetary value. The accounting equation always remains in balance; in other words, one side must equal the other.

The balance sheet expands the accounting equation by providing more information about the asstes, liabilities, and owners’ equity of a company at a specific time (for example, on December 31, 1993). It is made up of two parts. The first part lists the company assets, and the second part details liabilities and owners’ equity. Assets are divided into current and fixed assets. Cash, accounts receivable, and inventories are all current assets. Property, buildings, and equipment make up the fixed assets of a company. The liabilities section of the balance sheet is often divided into current liabilities (such as accounts payable and income taxes payable) and long-term liabilities (such as bonds and long-term notes).

The balance sheet provides a financial picture of a company on a particular date, and for this reason it is useful in two important areas. Internally, the balance sheet provides managers with financial information for company decision making. Externally, it gives potential investors data evaluating the company’s financial position.


1. Answer the following questions about the balance sheet. Question whit asterisk (*) cannot be answered directly form the text.

1. What is the final product of the accounting process?

2. What is a balance sheet?

3. Does the balance sheet provide financial information for a long period of time (for example, January to June 1993) or does it provide information for a specific point in time (for example, on June 30, 1993)?

4. What is the difference assets and liabilities?

5. How is owners’ or stockholders’ equity determined?

6. How can the relationship between assets, liabilities, and owners’ equity be represented?

7. Does the accounting equation always remain in balance?*Why or why not?

8. How can a business use a balance sheet?*As a manager, how would you find a balance sheet useful?


A. 1. The final product of accounting process is the balance sheet.

2. A balance sheet is a final statement that a provide a summary of what a

company owns and what it owes on a particular day.

3. It provides information for a specific point in time, for example, on June 30,


4. Assets represent everything of value that is owned by a business, liabilities are

the debts that is a company owes.

5. Owners’ is stockholders’ equity is determined by subtracting liabilities from


6. It can be represented by the fundamental accounting equation assets equal

Liabilities plus owners’ equity.

7. Yes, it does. Because one side must equal the other. If not, it must be wrong

with the recording.

8. A balance sheet is useful for a business, because it provide a financial picture

of a company or a particular day.

2. Complete the balance sheet by writing in the correct terms from the list below.

Assets Current liabilities Long-term liabilities

Liabilities Fixed assets Current assets

Stockholders equity

International Manufacturing, Inc

Balance Sheet

December 31, 1993



Current assets

Current liabilities


$ 49,400

Accounts payable

$ 30,000

Accounts receivable


Income texes payable





$ 49,000



Long-term liabilities

Fixed assets


$ 20,000


$ 15,000

long-term liabilities





$ 60,000




$ 75,000

Total liabilities


Stockholders’ equity

Total assets


Common stock

$ 47,000

Retained earnings



$ 70,000

Total liabilities and

stockholders’ equity


Vocabulary Exercises

1. Write down any terms that you did not understand in the reading. Find each term in the reading, look at its context, and try to figure out the meaning. Discuss these terms with your classmates.
2. Look at the terms in the left-hand column and find the correct synonyms or definitions in the right-hand column. Copy the corresponding letters in the blanks.

1. g property (line 6) a. assets equal liabilities plus

owners equity

2. d equal (line 12) b. provide information item

by item

3. f condition (line 2) c. indicate by words or


4. b detail (line 21) d. have the same value as

5. a accounting equation (line 12) e. a series of transactions,

changes, or functions that

bring about a particular


6. h monetary (line 15) f. the existing circumstance

7. e process (line 1) g. anything owned by a


8. c express (line 15) h. of or pertaining to money

C. Discuss the following question with a partner. In giving your answers, try to use the italicized terms.

1. What is the difference between accounts receivable and accounts


2. Why are accounts receivable and cash considered current assets while

property and equipment are considered fixed assets? What do you think

the difference is between current and fixed assets?

3. The owners’ equity in a company equals assets minus liabilities. What

is meant by owners’ (or stockholders’) equity?

4. If you were a manager, how would you use the balance sheet to evaluate

your company’s financial condition?

5. What do you consider your personal assets? Do you have any

liabilities? What are they?


1. Accounts receivable is assets and account payable is liabilities.

2. Because they are easy changed into money.

3. Net owning.

4. The manager known were the company’s financial healthy.

5. Mobile.

Text Analysis

Look at the reading to answer these question.

1. What does each of the following refer to?


1 they financial statement

9 this the owners’ share a business

11 this the relationship of its assets,

liabilities, and owners’ equity

15 these three factors assets, liabilities, owners’


2. In line 6, what are property, equipment, and accounts receivable examples of?


3. In line 7, what do suppliers and banks refer to?

To whom the company has debts

4. In line 5-7, two different phrases are used to incorporate examples in the reading. What are these phrases?

a. Assets

b. Liabilities

5. Another method of clarification by example is the use of mathematical representations. From the reading, copy example that use mathematical symbols.

a. The fundamental accounting equation

b. Assets = liabilities + owners’ equity


Categories of the balance sheet can be classified to show the relationship between them. Fill in the following blanks on the information provided in the reading and to figure 1 (page 79).

Class : Assets Class : Liabilities

Members : Current assets Members : Current liabilities

Fixed assets Long-term liabilities

Class : Current assets Class : Current liabilities

Members : Cash Members : Account payable

Accounts receivable Income tax payable


Class : Fixed assets Class : Long-term liabilities

Members : Property Members : Bonds

Building Long-term notes



Using the information in the reading, answer the following questions. Give reasons to support your answers.

1. Which of the following is not a fixed assets: office equipment, machinery, marketable securities, land, and buildings? Why?

Marketable securities, because its easy to change into money.

2. Are the following liabilities current or long-term: bank loans payable, accounts payable, mortgage bonds payable, taxes payable, and long-term notes payable? List each under the correct heading.


Account payable Bank loans payable

Taxes payable Mortgage bonds payable
Notes payable