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Principles of Accounting, Volume 1: Financial Accounting

1.1 Explain the Importance of Accounting and Distinguish between Financial and Managerial Accounting

Principles of Accounting, Volume 1: Financial Accounting1.1 Explain the Importance of Accounting and Distinguish between Financial and Managerial Accounting
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  1. Preface
  2. 1 Role of Accounting in Society
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 1.1 Explain the Importance of Accounting and Distinguish between Financial and Managerial Accounting
    3. 1.2 Identify Users of Accounting Information and How They Apply Information
    4. 1.3 Describe Typical Accounting Activities and the Role Accountants Play in Identifying, Recording, and Reporting Financial Activities
    5. 1.4 Explain Why Accounting Is Important to Business Stakeholders
    6. 1.5 Describe the Varied Career Paths Open to Individuals with an Accounting Education
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
  3. 2 Introduction to Financial Statements
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 2.1 Describe the Income Statement, Statement of Owner’s Equity, Balance Sheet, and Statement of Cash Flows, and How They Interrelate
    3. 2.2 Define, Explain, and Provide Examples of Current and Noncurrent Assets, Current and Noncurrent Liabilities, Equity, Revenues, and Expenses
    4. 2.3 Prepare an Income Statement, Statement of Owner’s Equity, and Balance Sheet
    5. Key Terms
    6. Summary
    7. Multiple Choice
    8. Questions
    9. Exercise Set A
    10. Exercise Set B
    11. Problem Set A
    12. Problem Set B
    13. Thought Provokers
  4. 3 Analyzing and Recording Transactions
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 3.1 Describe Principles, Assumptions, and Concepts of Accounting and Their Relationship to Financial Statements
    3. 3.2 Define and Describe the Expanded Accounting Equation and Its Relationship to Analyzing Transactions
    4. 3.3 Define and Describe the Initial Steps in the Accounting Cycle
    5. 3.4 Analyze Business Transactions Using the Accounting Equation and Show the Impact of Business Transactions on Financial Statements
    6. 3.5 Use Journal Entries to Record Transactions and Post to T-Accounts
    7. 3.6 Prepare a Trial Balance
    8. Key Terms
    9. Summary
    10. Multiple Choice
    11. Questions
    12. Exercise Set A
    13. Exercise Set B
    14. Problem Set A
    15. Problem Set B
    16. Thought Provokers
  5. 4 The Adjustment Process
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 4.1 Explain the Concepts and Guidelines Affecting Adjusting Entries
    3. 4.2 Discuss the Adjustment Process and Illustrate Common Types of Adjusting Entries
    4. 4.3 Record and Post the Common Types of Adjusting Entries
    5. 4.4 Use the Ledger Balances to Prepare an Adjusted Trial Balance
    6. 4.5 Prepare Financial Statements Using the Adjusted Trial Balance
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
    11. Exercise Set A
    12. Exercise Set B
    13. Problem Set A
    14. Problem Set B
    15. Thought Provokers
  6. 5 Completing the Accounting Cycle
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 5.1 Describe and Prepare Closing Entries for a Business
    3. 5.2 Prepare a Post-Closing Trial Balance
    4. 5.3 Apply the Results from the Adjusted Trial Balance to Compute Current Ratio and Working Capital Balance, and Explain How These Measures Represent Liquidity
    5. 5.4 Appendix: Complete a Comprehensive Accounting Cycle for a Business
    6. Key Terms
    7. Summary
    8. Multiple Choice
    9. Questions
    10. Exercise Set A
    11. Exercise Set B
    12. Problem Set A
    13. Problem Set B
    14. Thought Provokers
  7. 6 Merchandising Transactions
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 6.1 Compare and Contrast Merchandising versus Service Activities and Transactions
    3. 6.2 Compare and Contrast Perpetual versus Periodic Inventory Systems
    4. 6.3 Analyze and Record Transactions for Merchandise Purchases Using the Perpetual Inventory System
    5. 6.4 Analyze and Record Transactions for the Sale of Merchandise Using the Perpetual Inventory System
    6. 6.5 Discuss and Record Transactions Applying the Two Commonly Used Freight-In Methods
    7. 6.6 Describe and Prepare Multi-Step and Simple Income Statements for Merchandising Companies
    8. 6.7 Appendix: Analyze and Record Transactions for Merchandise Purchases and Sales Using the Periodic Inventory System
    9. Key Terms
    10. Summary
    11. Multiple Choice
    12. Questions
    13. Exercise Set A
    14. Exercise Set B
    15. Problem Set A
    16. Problem Set B
    17. Thought Provokers
  8. 7 Accounting Information Systems
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 7.1 Define and Describe the Components of an Accounting Information System
    3. 7.2 Describe and Explain the Purpose of Special Journals and Their Importance to Stakeholders
    4. 7.3 Analyze and Journalize Transactions Using Special Journals
    5. 7.4 Prepare a Subsidiary Ledger
    6. 7.5 Describe Career Paths Open to Individuals with a Joint Education in Accounting and Information Systems
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
    11. Exercise Set A
    12. Exercise Set B
    13. Problem Set A
    14. Problem Set B
    15. Thought Provokers
  9. 8 Fraud, Internal Controls, and Cash
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 8.1 Analyze Fraud in the Accounting Workplace
    3. 8.2 Define and Explain Internal Controls and Their Purpose within an Organization
    4. 8.3 Describe Internal Controls within an Organization
    5. 8.4 Define the Purpose and Use of a Petty Cash Fund, and Prepare Petty Cash Journal Entries
    6. 8.5 Discuss Management Responsibilities for Maintaining Internal Controls within an Organization
    7. 8.6 Define the Purpose of a Bank Reconciliation, and Prepare a Bank Reconciliation and Its Associated Journal Entries
    8. 8.7 Describe Fraud in Financial Statements and Sarbanes-Oxley Act Requirements
    9. Key Terms
    10. Summary
    11. Multiple Choice
    12. Questions
    13. Exercise Set A
    14. Exercise Set B
    15. Problem Set A
    16. Problem Set B
    17. Thought Provokers
  10. 9 Accounting for Receivables
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 9.1 Explain the Revenue Recognition Principle and How It Relates to Current and Future Sales and Purchase Transactions
    3. 9.2 Account for Uncollectible Accounts Using the Balance Sheet and Income Statement Approaches
    4. 9.3 Determine the Efficiency of Receivables Management Using Financial Ratios
    5. 9.4 Discuss the Role of Accounting for Receivables in Earnings Management
    6. 9.5 Apply Revenue Recognition Principles to Long-Term Projects
    7. 9.6 Explain How Notes Receivable and Accounts Receivable Differ
    8. 9.7 Appendix: Comprehensive Example of Bad Debt Estimation
    9. Key Terms
    10. Summary
    11. Multiple Choice
    12. Questions
    13. Exercise Set A
    14. Exercise Set B
    15. Problem Set A
    16. Problem Set B
    17. Thought Provokers
  11. 10 Inventory
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 10.1 Describe and Demonstrate the Basic Inventory Valuation Methods and Their Cost Flow Assumptions
    3. 10.2 Calculate the Cost of Goods Sold and Ending Inventory Using the Periodic Method
    4. 10.3 Calculate the Cost of Goods Sold and Ending Inventory Using the Perpetual Method
    5. 10.4 Explain and Demonstrate the Impact of Inventory Valuation Errors on the Income Statement and Balance Sheet
    6. 10.5 Examine the Efficiency of Inventory Management Using Financial Ratios
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
    11. Exercise Set A
    12. Exercise Set B
    13. Problem Set A
    14. Problem Set B
    15. Thought Provokers
  12. 11 Long-Term Assets
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 11.1 Distinguish between Tangible and Intangible Assets
    3. 11.2 Analyze and Classify Capitalized Costs versus Expenses
    4. 11.3 Explain and Apply Depreciation Methods to Allocate Capitalized Costs
    5. 11.4 Describe Accounting for Intangible Assets and Record Related Transactions
    6. 11.5 Describe Some Special Issues in Accounting for Long-Term Assets
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
    11. Exercise Set A
    12. Exercise Set B
    13. Problem Set A
    14. Problem Set B
    15. Thought Provokers
  13. 12 Current Liabilities
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 12.1 Identify and Describe Current Liabilities
    3. 12.2 Analyze, Journalize, and Report Current Liabilities
    4. 12.3 Define and Apply Accounting Treatment for Contingent Liabilities
    5. 12.4 Prepare Journal Entries to Record Short-Term Notes Payable
    6. 12.5 Record Transactions Incurred in Preparing Payroll
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
    11. Exercise Set A
    12. Exercise Set B
    13. Problem Set A
    14. Problem Set B
    15. Thought Provokers
  14. 13 Long-Term Liabilities
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 13.1 Explain the Pricing of Long-Term Liabilities
    3. 13.2 Compute Amortization of Long-Term Liabilities Using the Effective-Interest Method
    4. 13.3 Prepare Journal Entries to Reflect the Life Cycle of Bonds
    5. 13.4 Appendix: Special Topics Related to Long-Term Liabilities
    6. Key Terms
    7. Summary
    8. Multiple Choice
    9. Questions
    10. Exercise Set A
    11. Exercise Set B
    12. Problem Set A
    13. Problem Set B
    14. Thought Provokers
  15. 14 Corporation Accounting
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 14.1 Explain the Process of Securing Equity Financing through the Issuance of Stock
    3. 14.2 Analyze and Record Transactions for the Issuance and Repurchase of Stock
    4. 14.3 Record Transactions and the Effects on Financial Statements for Cash Dividends, Property Dividends, Stock Dividends, and Stock Splits
    5. 14.4 Compare and Contrast Owners’ Equity versus Retained Earnings
    6. 14.5 Discuss the Applicability of Earnings per Share as a Method to Measure Performance
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
    11. Exercise Set A
    12. Exercise Set B
    13. Problem Set A
    14. Problem Set B
    15. Thought Provokers
  16. 15 Partnership Accounting
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 15.1 Describe the Advantages and Disadvantages of Organizing as a Partnership
    3. 15.2 Describe How a Partnership Is Created, Including the Associated Journal Entries
    4. 15.3 Compute and Allocate Partners’ Share of Income and Loss
    5. 15.4 Prepare Journal Entries to Record the Admission and Withdrawal of a Partner
    6. 15.5 Discuss and Record Entries for the Dissolution of a Partnership
    7. Key Terms
    8. Summary
    9. Multiple Choice
    10. Questions
    11. Exercise Set A
    12. Exercise Set B
    13. Problem Set A
    14. Problem Set B
    15. Thought Provokers
  17. 16 Statement of Cash Flows
    1. Why It Matters
    2. 16.1 Explain the Purpose of the Statement of Cash Flows
    3. 16.2 Differentiate between Operating, Investing, and Financing Activities
    4. 16.3 Prepare the Statement of Cash Flows Using the Indirect Method
    5. 16.4 Prepare the Completed Statement of Cash Flows Using the Indirect Method
    6. 16.5 Use Information from the Statement of Cash Flows to Prepare Ratios to Assess Liquidity and Solvency
    7. 16.6 Appendix: Prepare a Completed Statement of Cash Flows Using the Direct Method
    8. Key Terms
    9. Summary
    10. Multiple Choice
    11. Questions
    12. Exercise Set A
    13. Exercise Set B
    14. Problem Set A
    15. Problem Set B
    16. Thought Provokers
  18. Financial Statement Analysis
  19. Time Value of Money
  20. Suggested Resources
  21. Answer Key
    1. Chapter 1
    2. Chapter 2
    3. Chapter 3
    4. Chapter 4
    5. Chapter 5
    6. Chapter 6
    7. Chapter 7
    8. Chapter 8
    9. Chapter 9
    10. Chapter 10
    11. Chapter 11
    12. Chapter 12
    13. Chapter 13
    14. Chapter 14
    15. Chapter 15
    16. Chapter 16
  22. Index

Accounting is the process of organizing, analyzing, and communicating financial information that is used for decision-making. Financial information is typically prepared by accountants—those trained in the specific techniques and practices of the profession. This course explores many of the topics and techniques related to the accounting profession. While many students will directly apply the knowledge gained in this course to continue their education and become accountants and business professionals, others might pursue different career paths. However, a solid understanding of accounting can for many still serve as a useful resource. In fact, it is hard to think of a profession where a foundation in the principles of accounting would not be beneficial. Therefore, one of the goals of this course is to provide a solid understanding of how financial information is prepared and used in the workplace, regardless of your particular career path.

Think It Through

Expertise

Every job or career requires a certain level of technical expertise and an understanding of the key aspects necessary to be successful. The time required to develop the expertise for a particular job or career varies from several months to much longer. For instance, doctors, in addition to the many years invested in the classroom, invest a significant amount of time providing care to patients under the supervision of more experienced doctors. This helps medical professionals develop the necessary skills to quickly and effectively diagnose and treat the various medical conditions they spent so many years learning about.

A photograph of a graduate during a college graduation ceremony.
Figure 1.2 College Graduation. (credit: modification of “140501-A-XA877-046” by Fort Wainwright Public Affairs Office/Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

Accounting also typically takes specialized training. Top accounting managers often invest many years and have a significant amount of experience mastering complex financial transactions. Also, in addition to attending college, earning professional certifications and investing in continuing education are necessary to develop a skill set sufficient to becoming experts in an accounting professional field.

The level and type of training in accounting are often dependent on which of the myriad options of accounting fields the potential accountant chooses to enter. To familiarize you with some potential opportunities, Describe the Varied Career Paths Open to Individuals with an Accounting Education examines many of these career options. In addition to covering an assortment of possible career opportunities, we address some of the educational and experiential certifications that are available. Why do you think accountants (and doctors) need to be certified and secure continuing education? In your response, defend your position with examples.

In addition to doctors and accountants, what other professions can you think of that might require a significant investment of time and effort in order to develop an expertise?

A traditional adage states that “accounting is the language of business.” While that is true, you can also say that “accounting is the language of life.” At some point, most people will make a decision that relies on accounting information. For example, you may have to decide whether it is better to lease or buy a vehicle. Likewise, a college graduate may have to decide whether it is better to take a higher-paying job in a bigger city (where the cost of living is also higher) or a job in a smaller community where both the pay and cost of living may be lower.

In a professional setting, a theater manager may want to know if the most recent play was profitable. Similarly, the owner of the local plumbing business may want to know whether it is worthwhile to pay an employee to be “on call” for emergencies during off-hours and weekends. Whether personal or professional, accounting information plays a vital role in all of these decisions.

You may have noticed that the decisions in these scenarios would be based on factors that include both financial and nonfinancial information. For instance, when deciding whether to lease or buy a vehicle, you would consider not only the monthly payments but also such factors as vehicle maintenance and reliability. The college graduate considering two job offers might weigh factors such as working hours, ease of commuting, and options for shopping and entertainment. The theater manager would analyze the proceeds from ticket sales and sponsorships as well as the expenses for production of the play and operating the concessions. In addition, the theater manager should consider how the financial performance of the play might have been influenced by the marketing of the play, the weather during the performances, and other factors such as competing events during the time of the play. All of these factors, both financial and nonfinancial, are relevant to the financial performance of the play. In addition to the additional cost of having an employee “on call” during evenings and weekends, the owner of the local plumbing business would consider nonfinancial factors in the decision. For instance, if there are no other plumbing businesses that offer services during evenings and weekends, offering emergency service might give the business a strategic advantage that could increase overall sales by attracting new customers.

This course explores the role that accounting plays in society. You will learn about financial accounting, which measures the financial performance of an organization using standard conventions to prepare and distribute financial reports. Financial accounting is used to generate information for stakeholders outside of an organization, such as owners, stockholders, lenders, and governmental entities such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Financial accounting is also a foundation for understanding managerial accounting, which uses both financial and nonfinancial information as a basis for making decisions within an organization with the purpose of equipping decision makers to set and evaluate business goals by determining what information they need to make a particular decision and how to analyze and communicate this information. Managerial accounting information tends to be used internally, for such purposes as budgeting, pricing, and determining production costs. Since the information is generally used internally, you do not see the same need for financial oversight in an organization’s managerial data.

You will also note in your financial accounting studies that there are governmental and organizational entities that oversee the accounting processes and systems that are used in financial accounting. These entities include organizations such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB). The PCAOB was created after several major cases of corporate fraud, leading to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, known as SOX. If you choose to pursue more advanced accounting courses, especially auditing courses, you will address the SOX in much greater detail.

For now, it is not necessary to go into greater detail about the mechanics of these organizations or other accounting and financial legislation. You just need to have a basic understanding that they function to provide a degree of protection for those outside of the organization who rely on the financial information.

Whether or not you aspire to become an accountant, understanding financial and managerial accounting is valuable and necessary for practically any career you will pursue. Management of a car manufacturer, for example, would use both financial and managerial accounting information to help improve the business. Financial accounting information is valuable as it measures whether or not the company was financially successful. Knowing this provides management with an opportunity to repeat activities that have proven effective and to make adjustments in areas in which the company has underperformed. Managerial accounting information is likewise valuable. Managers of the car manufacturer may want to know, for example, how much scrap is generated from a particular area in the manufacturing process. While identifying and improving the manufacturing process (i.e., reducing scrap) helps the company financially, it may also help other areas of the production process that are indirectly related, such as poor quality and shipping delays.

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