Retained earnings


G

Guru

Can I track changes to my retained earnings without having to close my fiscal
year? I need to send a financial statement to a vendor. I tried running a P&L
but my retained earnings is the same as the end of my last fiscal year,
despite several dollars in operating expenses. Any suggestions?
 
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C

CPA Hound

So...to manage your finanical years - such as opening a new year or closing a
prior year etc you would use Menu->Company->Manage Financial Year. If you
leave all your prior years open then they will show up in the Balance Sheet
as a single income number - when you close a given financial year the detail
of the income and expense items are reversed to Retained Earnings (an actual
journal entry). You can view the activity posted to Retained Earnings by
opening the account in the listing of Accounts (Menu->Company->Company
Lists->Chart of Accounts. Open the Retained Earnings and select the menu
item Actions->Transaction History.

If it is just a statement issue - you can export the Balance Sheet to Excel
and manually combine etc - if you need the P&L for a closed year just go to
the P&L report and specifiy that date range.

I hope this buckshot approach covered your question somewhere...
 
G

Guru

I can't close my year just yet becuase there are missing bank transacations
that I am still posting so option 1 is out.

I tried looking at transaction history under Chart of Accounts as you
suggested in option 2, but only my opening balance for retained earnings
shows. So that one is out too.

Option 3 seems easy for someone who does this often, which I don't, so any
clues on how to do this, although my feeling is that Office Accounting should
do it.

FYI: this is my first fiscal year using this so all opening balances are
from another system that we entered manually into Office Accounting, so there
are no prior open years. Also, I am using Small Business Accuotning 2008.

Thanks!
 
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C

CPA Hound

If you did not close any years in Office Accounting then there will be no
transactions. When you close a year then it sends transactions. For the
years brought over as with an opening balance there will also be no detail
since that is just a journal entry with then net debits and credits. Any
profit and loss statement will show the period you select and show
transactions if you used Office Accounting for that period - even if you
closed the year. The flip side is the Balance Sheet - Profit And Loss is
really Retained Earnings - it is just by convention that open years show as a
separate line called income(loss). In reality, Retained Earnings is the
account that represents current year Retained earnings and all prior year
retained earnings (less dividends) because it is the job of the Profit and
Loss statement to show actual earnings. If you export any given Balance
Sheet to Excel and just run the P&L for the current year you would see how
much you should show for that year and just put the old numbers in the
Retained Earnings. If this is your first year and the year is still open
then the Balance Sheet should be correct as is for this year.

The nutshell layout of a Balance Sheet is as follows:

Assets £ some number
-----------------
Total Assets £ Total Assets
==========

Liabilities £ some number
Equity
Stock ownership £ some number
Current year income £ some number
Retained Earnings £ some number
 

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