The above example is the simplest form of income statement that any standard business can generate. It is called the single-step income statement as it is based on a simple calculation that sums up revenue and gains and subtracts expenses and losses. The multi-step income statement provides more details about a company’s financial performance and helps investors and analysts to understand the company’s revenue sources and cost structure.

  • As the name suggests the single step statement where incomes and expenses are presented into one step and there is no classification of incomes and expenses reported.
  • These types of decisions often involve only variable costs and revenues—the two components of contribution margin.
  • By simply inputting the relevant financial data, the software automatically calculates and populates the figures, resulting in an accurate and comprehensive income statement.
  • Although these ratios are relatively simple to compute, the insights they offer can be invaluable for making informed business decisions.

The cash flow statement reconciles the income statement with the balance sheet in three major business activities. Operating revenue is the revenue earned by selling a company’s products or services. The operating revenue for an auto manufacturer would be realized through the production and sale of autos.

Important Relationships in the Income Statement

The multi-step income statement is the standard format of an income statement prepared by big corporations and all publicly listed companies. There are two different types of income statement that a company can prepare such as the single-step income statement and the multi-step income statement. It is most commonly used when a business has just started, and the first reporting period encompasses less than a full month. There are two other types of income statements that do not have unique formats. Indeed, the segmented income statements illustrated earlier in this chapter do not conform to GAAP for that reason.

Income statements display revenues and expenses, which under the accrual accounting method, are recorded when earned or incurred, not when cash actually flows in or out of the business. Cash flow statements, on the other hand, record the actual cash inflows and outflows. On an income statement, businesses may report earned revenue even if cash has not been received. It is essential to understand that just because revenue is recognized at a certain time, it does not necessarily imply that the cash is readily available.

Comparative Income Statement

Often shortened to “COGS,” this is how much it cost to produce all of the goods or services you sold to your customers. If the company is a service business, this line item can also be called Cost of Sales. How you calculate this figure will depend on whether or not you do cash or accrual accounting and how your company recognizes revenue, especially if you’re just calculating revenue for a single month.

The balance sheet and cash flow statement, however, focus more on the capital management of the firm in terms of both assets and structure. A single-step income statement is a simplified financial statement that reports a company’s revenues, expenses, gains, and losses in a single equation. It calculates the net income by subtracting the total expenses from the total revenues. This income statement formula is commonly used by smaller businesses with a straightforward financial structure. The balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow statement each offer unique details with information that is all interconnected. Together the three statements give a comprehensive portrayal of the company’s operating activities.


It provides a clear understanding of the factors influencing a company’s profitability and financial performance. This statement enables users to easily compare the company’s financial results with those of its industry peers. Moreover, changes in the percentage ratios over time can serve as indicators of shifts in the company’s business models, sales performance, or production costs. Inevitably, understanding a company’s financial performance requires analysis of more than just the income statement. Analyzing other key financial statements such as the balance sheet and statement of cash flows can also provide valuable insights into a company’s overall financial situation.

The ability to plan and forecast is made much easier with income statements. Being able to analyze the trends in pricing and sales over an extended period can improve your ability to predict how your business will fare in the future. The longer you have an income statement, and the more detailed it is, the easier it will be to spot trends and analyze gross margin performance. “The income statement reflects the income earned and expenses paid net of either profit or loss for a period,” Mitchell Freedman, a certified public accountant at MFAC Financial Advisors, told “If you are selling services or merchandise, this is the measurement of how the company is performing.” A total of $560 million in selling and operating expenses, and $293 million in general and administrative expenses, were subtracted from that profit, leaving an operating income of $765 million.

How to Prepare an Income Statement

These denote costs linked to the goods and services offered by a business, such as rent, office, supplies etc.. Sales commission, pension contributions, and payroll account also contribute to OPEX. Here’s an example of an income statement from a fictional company for the year that ended on September 28, 2019. COGS only involves direct expenses like raw materials, labor and shipping costs. If you roast and sell coffee like Coffee Roaster Enterprises, this might include the cost of raw coffee beans, wages, and packaging.

Segmented income statements provide information for evaluating the profitability and performance of a company’s divisions, product lines, sales territories, and other segments. In the world of finance and accounting, an income statement is an essential tool used to analyze the financial performance of a business. In this article, let’s explore with Viindoo Enterprise Management Software what an income statement is, the different types of income statements, and why it is important for businesses to have one.

In addition, U.S. government agencies use a different set of financial reporting rules. Revenue realized through secondary, noncore business activities is often referred to as nonoperating, recurring revenue. Although they are not directly related what is irs form 2553 to business operations, they provide valuable information about a company’s debt load for external investors. Gains or losses on asset sales refer to the money earned or lost from selling a business asset, such as company computer equipment.

Accountants create income statements using trial balances from any two points in time. Common size income statements include an additional column of data summarizing each line item as a percentage of your total revenue. You don’t need fancy accounting software or an accounting degree to create an income statement. Our expert bookkeepers here at Bench have built an income statement template in Excel that you can use to assess the financial health of your business and turn your financial information into an income statement. Net income can be calculated by less cost of goods sold, less operating expenses, taxes, and interest expenses from Sales Revenues. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) are the set of rules by which United States companies must prepare their financial statements.

Broadly, the income statement shows the direct, indirect, and capital expenses a company incurs. Income statement evaluates the profit or loss of a business over a period of time, whereas balance sheets show the financial position of a business at a specific point in time. Income statements provide a summary of the performance of a company during a specific accounting period and are useful for various stakeholders like management, investors, lenders, and creditors.

Published On: September 24th, 2020 / Categories: Bookkeeping /