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Understanding Your Balance Sheet Reports

Understanding Your Balance Sheet Reports

Understanding your finances is a vital part of running your business. But getting down into the nitty gritty of the company accounts isn’t every entrepreneur’s top skill. If you are new to company accounting, or simply want to expand your knowledge, we can help explain the foundational reports.

The profit and loss report and the balance sheet are both key reports when it comes to getting in control of your company’s financial health.

What’s a profit and loss statement?

Your profit and loss statement is commonly called your P&L, but is also referred to as your income statement or statement of earnings. It’s a full breakdown of your company’s revenue (money coming into the company as sales and other business income) and your expenditure (direct costs, overheads, expenses and other costs).

As a business, you obviously want to turn a profit and make money from your venture. Careful observation of your P&L allows you to track your revenues and expenses over a set period of time. You can then look back over the period and see exactly where you’re making money, and where you’re losing money. The more you make, and the less you lose, the greater your profits will be at year-end – and your P&L is your barometer for measuring these metrics.

The P&L statement is good for:

  • Giving you a breakdown of all revenues and relevant costs and expenses
  • Showing the profit and loss figures over a set period of time
  • Summing up your profit and loss for the period to gauge if you’re profitable.

What’s the balance sheet?

The balance sheet gives you a snapshot of your company’s financial health at a given point in time, based on the following accounting equation: ‘Equity = Assets - Liabilities’

The balance sheet shows shows you the company’s:

  • Assets (the things the company owns, including cash)
  • Liabilities (the things the company owes other people)
  • Equity (retained earnings plus the funds you originally invested as shareholders)

Unlike the P&L – which shows you the revenues and expenditure over the course of a given historic period – the balance sheet is best seen as a ‘screenshot’ of your current finances. In a nutshell, it shows you what the company is worth on paper right now, based on the current numbers in your accounts. So it’s a vital tool in your accounting toolbox.

The balance sheet is helpful for:

  • Assessing the current financial position of the company
  • Providing evidence of your financial position to banks, lenders and investors 
  • Giving potential buyers an idea of the company’s tangible net asset value, if you plan to sell up.

Talk to us about expanding your accounting skills

If you don’t know your assets from your equity, we don’t blame you. Accounting can be complicated and it takes time to fully grasp all the different terms and processes. 

But if you’d like to know more about the basics of your company accounts, we can help. We’ll be happy to run you through your latest management or statutory accounts and explain exactly what each report means – and how it reflects your current performance as a business.

Get in touch to find out more about your accounts.

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For us, there is nothing better than a happy customer. Here are just a few that let us know how much we mean to them.

Pete Dungey

Simple, efficient and most importantly, hassle-free.

We found Panthera via our search for a Xero expert. We knew the software we wanted to use, and needed a forward-thinking accountancy partner who could get us up and running, and teach us the ropes moving forward. Tory and her team have always been on hand to answer our questions, and help us to grow as a business, particularly during periods of big change, such as becoming VAT registered. They are always on hand to alleviate any concerns and help to keep our records in order, which makes our year-end accounts an absolute breeze! Being based in Bristol, our relationship is entirely email based, alongside one consolidation meeting at year end - this keeps things simple, efficient and most importantly, hassle-free.

Pete Dungey Kaleido Grafik Limited
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The support and service we receive from Panthera Accounting is very good. Everything from regular meetings, a prompt e mail response and the transition of our Xero software (which we find very pro active indeed) has and is all remarkably efficient. We find Panthera talk our language and make any process as painless and easy as possible.

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We got in touch with Panthera Accounting by way of a recommendation; we haven't looked anywhere else since. They are an extremely professional yet relaxed group of people. We were slightly daunted by the idea of accountants but Panthera brushed aside y the stereotypes. They are very understanding when answering any questions we may have. They are completely efficient, offer sound business advice, and are fantastically priced. We will continue to recommend them.

Ash & Tim Lane Starveacre Fencing
Jayne Johnson

An Asset to my Business!

The whole team at Panthera are great! Working with them has been a huge support to my growing business. They help me to understand the numbers I need to know. They give me technology solutions like Xero so that I can process things quickly and have access to my own figures. They are quick to reply, highly knowledgeable, nothing is too much trouble and as well as making sure that everything is compliant and on time, they are enthusiastic, professional and fun to work with.

Jayne Johnson Better People
John Baker

Absolute joy - they provide a first class service on every level

Working with Tory and the team at Panthera is an absolute joy - they provide a first class service on every level; from simple Xero issues through to more complicated tax enquiries, they’re always on-hand to help me get it right. I’m certainly not their biggest customer, but I’m always made to feel like their most important one.

John Baker BKR Solutions
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Professional and Friendly

I would like to say that Panthera Accounting have helped me with my business accounts for more than 4 years now. They have consistently offered an excellent competitively priced service that works both professionally and in such a friendly way that I would highly recommend them to everyone considering using their services.

John Castle Ilexanna Limited & Birch Castle Homes Limited
Jonathan Morrison

They are always there to answer queries and sort out issues

I had been with Mr Dunn for 20 years when upon his death Panthera took over the business. They now play a bigger part in the running of my business, they do all the stuff that has to be done but I don't like doing ie book keeping, VAT, wages, and returns. They are always there to answer queries and sort out issues and make sure all Tax deadlines are met. Their costs are fair, service is great and I have and would highly recommend them.

Jonathan Morrison Wallingford Builders
Pippa Scott

Professional, friendly and personal service.

Panthera Accounting have gone above and beyond the call of duty to guide and support our Company. They offer a professional, friendly and personal service that can take the stressful and sometimes frightening feelings out of running a business. They have guided us through the working of Xero and have offered “teaching sessions” on the day to day running of the accountancy package. Our only regret is that we didn’t join their team earlier.

Pippa Scott Scott's Commercial Services Limited
Sara Southey

Panthera puts the personal back in to accountancy!

Tory and her team have provided a friendly, approachable and helpful service from the start. They have delivered a quality service, above and beyond anything I could have expected. Panthera, with the help of the Xero package, have taken the stress, strain and confusion out of managing my company and personal accounts. I look forward to working with them for many years to come.

Sara Southey Bluestones Garden Design
Tracey Miller

Panthera are fantastic.

Panthera are fantastic. Always professional, going the extra mile for their clients and delivering superb service. I recommend them all the time to my clients.

Tracey Miller Bigger, Brighter, Bolder BBB

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