Closing Entries

The remaining balance in Retained Earnings is $4,565 (Figure 5.6). This is the same figure found on the statement of retained earnings. The fourth entry requires Dividends to close to the Retained Earnings account. Remember from your past studies that dividends are not expenses, such as salaries paid to your employees or staff. Instead, declaring and paying dividends is a method utilized by corporations to return part of the profits generated by the company to the owners of the company—in this case, its shareholders.

That means it would have a balance at the end of the year and be shown in the balance sheet. It saves you time, money and keep the related Closing Entries debit with its credit in a single journal. Are you looking for a pro forma income statement template Excel for your business?

  • As you will see later, Income Summary is eventually closed to capital.
  • Permanent accounts are the balance sheet accounts, the balance of which exist for a period longer than one year or the current accounting year.
  • We will debit the revenue accounts and credit the Income Summary account.
  • On the statement of retained earnings, we reported the ending balance of retained earnings to be $15,190.
  • A general ledger is the record-keeping system for a company’s financial data, with debit and credit account records validated by a trial balance.

The transfer is done so that companies can reset their temporary accounts to zero on the account ledger. It also completes the last stage of the accounting cycle and prepare the books for the next period. This is done by preparing closing entries in the general journal. Notice that revenues, expenses, dividends, and income summary all have zero balances. The post-closing T-accounts will be transferred to the post-closing trial balance, which is step 9 in the accounting cycle. For starters, accounting software can generate reports automatically based on the dates transactions are posted. It’s not as important to close out temporary accounts every month in order to generate new reports.

Use the chart below to determine which accounts are decreased by debits and which are decreased by credits. Your business has generated $20,000 worth of revenue during a month. You then shift the balance of the revenue account by debiting revenue and crediting income summary. Once this closing entry is made, the revenue account balance will be zero and the account will be ready to accumulate revenue at the beginning of the next accounting period.

Summary Of The Closing Entries

The first part is the date of declaration, which creates the obligation or liability to pay the dividend. The second part is the date of record that determines who receives the dividends, and the third part is the date of payment, which is the date that payments are made. Printing Plus has $100 of dividends with a debit balance on the adjusted trial balance. The closing entry will credit Dividends and debit Retained Earnings. Having a zero balance in these accounts is important so a company can compare performance across periods, particularly with income. It also helps the company keep thorough records of account balances affecting retained earnings. Revenue, expense, and dividend accounts affect retained earnings and are closed so they can accumulate new balances in the next period, which is an application of the time period assumption.

Closing Entries

They are special entries posted at the end of an accounting period. Well, that is the case of closing entries definition, which puts an end to your accounting season. But, first I am pretty sure you’d want to know what it stands for and how to do it. All of these accounts appear on the income statement, and their impact is temporary. After closing, the dividend account will have a zero balance and be ready for the next period’s dividend payments.

Starting with zero balances in the temporary accounts each year makes it easier to track revenues, expenses, and withdrawals and to compare them from one year to the next. There are four closing entries, which transfer all temporary account balances to the owner’s capital account. Closing entries are journal entries made at the end of an accounting period to transfer temporary accounts to permanent accounts.

Let’s say your business wants to create month-end closing entries. During the accounting period, you earned $5,000 in revenue and had $2,500 in expenses. Without closing revenue accounts, you wouldn’t be able to compare how much your business earns each period because the amount would build up. And without closing expense accounts, you couldn’t compare your business expenses from period to period.

How To Create Closing Entries

It didn’t happen until it was recorded and that is the importance of journal entries definition and why you should know about it in accounting for your business. The closing entries are reflected in the owner’s equity statement. Once the closing entries have been posted, the trial balance calculation is performed to help detect any errors that may have occurred in the closing process. A specific example of this is dividends which is the final closing entry that will reduce retained earnings by any amount paid to investors.

Closing Entries

A company’s income statement is one of the three main financial statements and provides analysts a picture of its performance over the course of a fiscal year. Temporary accounts, also known as nominal accounts, are accounts that businesses use to accumulate transactions during one accounting period. These entries are created to prepare a business for the next accounting period. Closing entries are journal entries that are made at the end of an accounting period.

The Closing Entries

The Income Summary balance is ultimately closed to the capital account. You’re not sure of which types of accounting records could suitable for your business or which accountant to hire? No worries, this article will gently accompany you in your knowledge journey. Instead of zeroing the revenue and expense balances, avoid accidentally doubling them.

First, transfer the $5,000 in your revenue account to your income summary account. Whether you credit or debit your income summary account will depend on whether your revenue is more than your expenses. Accounting software automatically handles closing entries for you.

Closing Entries: Process, Major Steps, Purpose & Objectives

Temporary account balances can either be shifted directly to the retained earnings account or to an intermediate account known as the income summary account beforehand. The transfer of all revenue accounts into the income summary- this entails a debit on revenue accounts and a credit on the income summary. The Closing Process is a step in the accounting cycle that occurs at the end of the accounting period, after the financial statements are completed. Accounts Payable Journal Entries refer to the amount payable accounting entries to the company’s creditors for the purchase of goods or services. They are reported under the head current liabilities on the balance sheet, and this account is debited whenever any payment has been made. ‘Retained earnings‘ account is credited to record the closing entry for income summary. The income summary account is closed and credited to the retained earnings.

  • Account is an intermediary between revenues and expenses, and the Retained Earnings account.
  • You need to create closing journal entries by debiting and crediting the right accounts.
  • Cash, accounts receivable, accounts payable, and liability accounts are all examples of permanent accounts.
  • Now at the end of the accounting year 2018, the expense account needs to be credited to clear its balances, and the Income summary account should be debited.
  • Prepare one journal entry that debitsall the revenue accounts.

If the balance in Income Summary before closing is a credit balance, you will debit Income Summary and credit Retained Earnings in the closing entry. Accountants prepare a company’s balance sheet, cash flow statement and income statement using the correct balances.

Close All Revenue And Gain Accounts

Transfer the balances of various expense accounts to income summary account. It is done by debiting income summary account and crediting various expense accounts. The process transfers these temporary account balances to permanent entries on the company’s balance sheet.

  • These accounts are listed on the balance sheet as one of the three main financial statements, which gives analysts a picture of a company’s financial standing at a particular moment in time.
  • State whether each account is a permanent or temporary account.
  • She has written for “The Einkwell,” “Windsor Parent,” MomsOnline, Writer’s Stew, Lighthouse Venture Group and others.
  • The retained earnings account is reduced by the amount paid out in dividends through a debit, and the dividends expense is credited.
  • Temporary accounts can either be closed directly to the retained earnings account or to an intermediate account called theincome summary account.

Permanent accounts are those ledger accounts the balances of which continue to exist beyond the current accounting period (i.e., these accounts are not closed at the end of the period). In the next accounting period, these accounts usually start with a non-zero balance. All balance sheet accounts are examples of permanent or real accounts. In some cases, accounting software might automatically handle the transfer of balances to an income summary account, once the user closes the accounting period. The entries take place “behind the scenes,” often with no income summary account showing in the chart of accounts or other transaction records. Temporary accounts, also referred to as nominal accounts or income statement accounts, start each accounting period with a balance of zero.

Account is not used, and the balances are directly transferred to the retained earnings account. In either of the ways, the temporary accounts need to be zero at the end of an accounting period.


Account is an intermediary between revenues and expenses, and the Retained Earnings account. It stores all of the closing information for revenues and expenses, resulting in a “summary” of income or loss for the period. The balance in the Income Summary account equals the net income or loss for the period. This balance is then transferred to the Retained Earnings account. Are accounts that transfer balances to the next period and include balance sheet accounts, such as assets, liabilities, and stockholders’ equity.

Chapter 3: Completion Of The Accounting Cycle

Close the income summary account by debiting income summary and crediting retained earnings. Revenue accounts and expense accounts have zero balance at the end of closing entries. Dividend account is credited to record the closing entry for dividends. The general journal is where businesses record their closing entries. The closing entries are then posted to the ledger accounts. The balance of the revenue account is cleared by applying a debit to the revenue account and an equivalent credit to the income summary account.

Closing Entry

These journal entries are made after the financial statements have been prepared at the end of the accounting year. A closing entry also transfers the owner’s drawing account balance to the owner’s capital account. The closing entries will mean that the temporary accounts will start the new accounting year with zero balances. When revenue and expenses accounts have been closed than we need to close last nominal account i.e. income summary with owner Equity account. The balances of permanent accounts continue to exist beyond the current accounting period. The process of transferring the balances of the temporary accounts into owner’s equity permanent account is called closing the accounts.

The Three Major Financial Statements: How They’re Interconnected

Closing the revenue accounts—transferring the credit balances in the revenue accounts to a clearing account called Income Summary. Income summary is a holding account used to aggregate all income accounts except for dividend expenses. Income summary is not reported on any financial statements because it is only used during the closing process, and at the end of the closing process the account balance is zero.