Bank Balance Sheet Analyzing A Banks Financial Statements
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Understanding the different types of financial statements that can be prepared for your business and being fluent with the information each contains helps you better understand your financial position and make more informed decisions about your business. Remember - forewarned is forearmed...and you can t manage until you measure! That being said I have found that a critical measuring tool - the Balance Sheet - is often overlooked by small business owners - likely because they don t understand its importance. Let s see if we can change that... The Balance Sheet is merely a snapshot of your company s financial position as of a given point in time. Today s balance sheet could be different tomorrow - simply by writing out a check or invoicing a client. This financial statement provides the details your assets liabilities and equity - the three components of a business financial accounting - as of a particular date. Although balance sheets may be created as of any date they are typically prepared at the end of an accounting period such as a month quarter or year.
To many non-financial people the balance sheet does not make sense in any case so they gravitate to the only report that is an easy read namely the income statement. Assets and liabilities are just too complex to grasp. In the last ten years or so this has changed so much so that readers and users are advised to lend substantially more credence to the balance sheet than the income statement. This "discrimination" exacted on the income statement is so severe that some investors are encouraged to even ignore the income statement as a whole. Why is this so? It could be the fiddling with revenue figures by many now defunct corrupt corporations which reported highly profitable figures whilst these businesses were heavily indebted (liabilities) or technically insolvent. Moreover high revenues are no guarantee against bankruptcy. Historically an income statement was drawn up first and the balance sheet second. The balance sheet became the "rubbish bin" for all items that could not balance the books.
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On the other hand long-term assets which can include land inventory and equipment are paid off and will benefit the company over an extended period of time. Accumulative depreciation is used on balance sheets to explain how the cost of long-term assets are "used up" during the process of running a business. The cost is spread over the life of the asset. For example say a piece of machinery cost $50 000 and the useful life of the machine is 20 years therefore in the first year the accumulative depreciation for the equipment is $2 500. Liabilities can simply be explained as the amounts owed to other organizations such as the transfer of assets or services that need to be provided. Liabilities are also made up of current and long-term.