What is a Balance Sheet? Explained under 3 minutes

Accounting Jul 20, 2020
A Balance Sheet offers a snapshot of your company’s financial position at a moment in time.

The Balance Sheet helps you answer the questions:

- How much does your business own?

- How much does your business owe?

- How much was invested by your own fund, or shareholders funds?

There are three main types of accounts in a Balance Sheet:


Assets are what companies own to generate income such as factory, furniture, goods for sale, money in bank accounts, or outstanding invoices.

Apple's total assets as of June 29, 2019


Liabilities are what companies owe, including loans from banks, money owes to vendors, employees, tax authorities.

Apple's total liabilities as of June 29, 2019

Equity (Owner’s Equity or Shareholder’s Equity)

The amount invested by its owner or shareholders and earnings retained from operation.

Apple's total shareholders' equity as of June 29, 2019

Equity implies the remaining portion of owners or shareholders of the company if all assets are liquidated, and all liabilities are satisfied.

The three are part of your chart of accounts. It is important to setup your chart of accounts correctly to get the right reports.

The Accounting Formula

Assets = Liabilities + Equity,

You might have heard that famous accounting formula, but what does it really mean anyway?

Think of it this way: What you have on hand (assets) is either:

1/ What you have borrowed from banks or other creditors (liabilities)

2/ What you have chipped into the business (owner’s Equity), what shareholders have invested in the business (Shareholders’ Equity, or what you have earned and retained after deducting all expenses (Retained earnings)


Hope you have a better understanding of balance sheets now. If you want balance sheet examples and an in depth analysis, head over here.

Interested in knowing more? Here is some further reading.

Did You Know

You can generate balance sheets and other financial statements online with an online accounting software like Deskera Books easily.

Generate Financial Reports like Balance Sheet with Deskera Books


Life is too short to be complacent. So go and learn more. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

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