What is an adjusted trial balance?

Definition of an Adjusted Trial Balance

The adjusted trial balance is an internal document that lists the general ledger account titles and their balances after any adjustments have been made. The adjusted trial balance is not a financial statement, but the adjusted account balances will be reported on the financial statements.

The adjusted trial balance (as well as the unadjusted trial balance) must have the total amount of the debit balances equal to the total amount of credit balances.

Examples of Adjusted Trial Balances

In a manual accounting system, an unadjusted trial balance might be prepared by a bookkeeper to be certain that the general ledger has debit amounts equal to the credit amounts. After that is the case, the unadjusted trial balance is used by an accountant to indicate the necessary adjusting entries and the resulting adjusted balances. The adjusted balances are summed to become the adjusted trial balance.

An adjusted trial balance can also refer to a trial balance where the account balances are adjusted by the external auditors. The adjusted balances become the adjusted trial balance.

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