The accrual method of accounting also requires that expenses and losses be reported on the income statement when they occur even if payment will take place 30 days later. For example, if a company has a $15,000 repair done on December 15 and the vendor allows for payment on January 15, the company will report a repair expense and a liability of $15,000 as of December 15. (On January 15 the company will credit Cash and will debit the liability account.)
The accrual method of accounting, which is also known as the accrual basis of accounting, is required for large companies. (The cash method of accounting may be used by individuals and some small companies.) The accrual method and the associated adjusting entries will result in a more complete and accurate reporting of a company's assets, liabilities, equity, and earnings during each accounting period.
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