What are accounting principles?

Definition of Accounting Principles

Accounting principles are the common rules that must be followed when preparing financial statements that are distributed to people outside of the company (or other organization).

Examples of Accounting Principles

The basic underlying accounting principles, guidelines and assumptions include the following:

In the U.S. the accounting principles also include the many complex, detailed rules that are established and maintained by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB).

The combination of the basic underlying guidelines and the complex detailed accounting rules are referred to as generally accepted accounting principles (or US GAAP or GAAP).