Post Closing Trial Balance

what is a post closing trial balance

The reason is that Bob did not make a profit in the first month of his operations. If they do not, this could mean that there has been an error in journalizing the closing entries or while posting them to the ledger. A list of the accounts and their balances at the end of the accounting period after closing entries have been journalized and posted. The post-closing trial balance is used to check the debits and credits after closing entries for transactions have been made.

  • Therefore, a post-closing trial balance will include a list of all permanent accounts that still have balances.
  • The unadjusted trial balance is the first trial balance that you’ll prepare, and it should be completed after all entries for the accounting period have been completed.
  • This means the compensating errors do not impact the tallying of the trial balance.
  • Nominal accounts are those that are found in the income statement, and withdrawals.
  • It contains columns for the account number, account description, debits, and credits for any business or firm.

There is no difference at all among the formats of post closing trial balances, unadjusted and adjusted Trial balance. This closing trial is created in the same format in which other trial balances are prepared. Therefore, Trial Balance is an important accounting statement as it showcases the final status of each of your ledger accounts at the end of the financial year. These final balances help you to prepare final accounts like the Profit and Loss Statement and Balance Sheet. There has been an error in journalizing the closing entries in the preceding step of the accounting cycle. Having an up to date post-closing trial balance also helps in the adjustment of the accounts.

Advantages Of Trial Balance

You post totals from the journals to the general ledger, and footthe general ledger accounts. Then you prepare the following preliminary trial balance, using the balances from your general ledger accounts. You commit compensating errors if the net effect of such errors on the debit and credit balances of accounts is nil. This means the compensating errors do not impact the tallying of the trial balance. The trial balance also helps your business’s management to undertake analysis while taking managerial decisions. That is, your company’s managers can compare the trial balances of various years and figure out changes in various balances. Some of the important accounts that your business management can track include purchases, debtors, sales, etc.

Format of post-closing trial balance is the same as for other trial balances, i.e. non-adjusted trial balance, adjusted trial balance. The difference is the accounts, which are present and which are not in post closing trial balance, as described above. Further, the short-term liabilities appear before the long-term liabilities under the head ‘Liabilities’ in your trial balance. Also, the balances pertaining to assets and expenses are represented in the debit column. Whereas the balances related to liabilities, income, and equity are shown in the credit column. Remember, all revenue and expense accounts of your trial balance are showcased in the trading and P&L accounts.

It ensures that closing was performed correctly and that all the temporary accounts were reduced to zero, by closing entries. When manually creating financial statements in Excel, a post closing trial balance is an effective tool. Given that most general ledger systems are automated, these types of trial balances are not as prevalent in accounting departments, as they once were. A post-closing trial balance lists every account that contains a balance after the close of the accounting period for a business. The accounting period closes when the accountant records all financial entries in the general ledger and the financial statements are prepared. The balances contained in the post-closing trial balance represent the beginning balances for the following period.

What Is Post Closing Trial Balance?

Prior to graduating from UNC, he graduated from Mitchell Community College with an Associate of Applied Science in business administration. Thank a lot for nice presentation of total accounts keeping method. Harold Averkamp has worked normal balance as a university accounting instructor, accountant, and consultant for more than 25 years. He is the sole author of all the materials on QuickBooks Desktop remains a favorite among small business owners.

The format for the post-closing trial balance is similar to other trial balances. The columns it includes are account number, account description, debits, and credits. Once we get the adjusted trial balance, we then prepare the financial statements and all the suspend account need to be closed.

Revenue Accounts

Temporary accounts are reduced during the closing process when closing entries are posted, leaving only permanent accounts displayed on the balance sheet. The post-closing trial balance sheet accounts should show that the total of all the debit accounts balances equals the total of all credit accounts balances, which would then net to zero. The post-closing trial balance is the last step or final step in the accounting cycle, and then the cycle starts all over again for the next accounting period. It is the final trial balance before the new accounting period begins. The adjusted trial balance is a trial balance sheet that reveals the closing balance of all your general ledger accounts. The very purpose of adding these adjusted entries is to rectify the accounting errors in your unadjusted Trial Balance.

What is adjusting the accounts?

The purpose of adjusting entries is to convert cash transactions into the accrual accounting method. It typically relates to the balance sheet accounts for accumulated depreciation, allowance for doubtful accounts, accrued expenses, accrued income, prepaid expenses, deferred revenue, and unearned revenue.

It contains no sales revenue entries, no expense journal entries, no gain or loss entries, etc. since these are determined to be temporary accounts. As part of the closing process, the balances in these move to the retained earnings account. We see from the adjusted trial balance that our revenue accounts have a credit balance. To make them zero we want to decrease the balance or do the opposite. We will debit the revenue accounts and credit the Income Summary account. The credit to income summary should equal the total revenue from the income statement.

Likewise, your sales return account would show a short debit of $10,000 if you understate your sales returns by $10,000. Thus, the impact of such entries would be nil on your books of accounts. This is because an increase in one account is offset by a decrease in the other. A tallied trial balance indicates that the posting of the journal entries to the general ledger is arithmetically correct.

what is a post closing trial balance

So, the ending balance of this period will be the beginning balance for next period. Totals of both the debit and credit columns will be calculated at the bottom end of the post-closing trial balance. These columns should balance, otherwise, it would likely mean that there has been an error in posting of the adjusting entries. The following post-closing trial balance was prepared after posting the closing entries of Bold City Consulting to its general ledger and calculating new account balances. equal all credit balances, and hence net balance should be zero. It presents a list of accounts and their balances after closing entries have been written and posted in the ledger.

Thus, there is no need for you to go through each of the ledger accounts while preparing financial statements. Provided you have a correct and a balance out the trial balance sheet. Thus, we can say that the first step in preparing the basic financial statements is to formulate a tallied out trial balance. A post-closing trial balance is a list of balances of ledger accounts prepared after closing entries have been passed and posted to the ledger accounts. However, all the other accounts having non-negative balances are listed including the retained earnings account.

Once an accountant determines the zero balance test , it means there are no further transactions for the old accounting period. Therefore, any new transaction must be for the next accounting period. As you can see, the accounts are generally listed in balance sheet order starting with the assets followed by the liabilities and then equity accounts. If these two don’t equal, there is either a problem with closing entries or theadjusted trial balance. The post-closing trial balance, the last step in the accounting cycle, helps prepare your general ledger for the new accounting period.

what is a post closing trial balance

Once your adjusting entries have been made, you’re ready to run your adjusted trial balance. A post-closing trial balance is the final trial balance prepared before the new accounting period begins.

There are three types of trial balance – Post-closing, Unadjusted, and Adjusted Trial Balance. In this stage, the accountant might need to know the nature of transactions so that they could classify whether it is expenses, revenues, assets, or post closing trial balance liabilities. Recording of those transactions should follow the role of debt and credit. And finally, in the fourth entry the drawing account is closed to the capital account. At this point, the balance of the capital account would be 7,260 .


Since closing entries close all temporary ledger accounts, the post-closing trial balance consists of only permanent ledger accounts (i.e, balance sheet accounts). The purpose of preparing a post-closing trial balance is to assure that accounts are in balance and ready for recording transactions in the next accounting period. Another thing to observe is that as expected we do not see any temporary account balances in the post-closing trial balance. The retained earnings account is a new permanent account listed on this trial balance which you won’t find in the trial balances that preceded the post-closing trial balance. The difference between the unadjusted trial balance and the adjusted trial balance is the adjusting entries that are required to align the company accounts for the matching principle. The adjusted trial balance includes income from the current period. Closing entries reduce the income account to zero and transfer the balance to the income summary account.

Or at the time of posting such a transaction to your general ledger. As mentioned earlier, you prepare a Trial Balance Sheet to check the arithmetical accuracy of your ledger accounts. To ascertain the accuracy of various ledger accounts, you need to locate errors and in return rectify such errors. Closing the expense accounts—transferring the debit balances in the expense accounts to a clearing account called Income Summary. Closing the revenue accounts—transferring the credit balances in the revenue accounts to a clearing account called Income Summary. It is important to note that the post-closing trial balance contains only balance items accounts.

The debit accounts are incorrectly listed as credit accounts or vice versa. Once we are satisfied that everything is balanced, we carry the balances forward to the new blank pages of the next year’s ledger and are ready to start posting transactions. Accounting Accounting software helps manage payable and receivable accounts, general ledgers, payroll and other accounting activities. «Define a post-closing trial balance.» Academic.Tips, 1 Apr. 2020,

In a double entry accounting system, accounts are entered in either a debit or credit column. Accounts are debited to show an increase in an asset, expenses and receivables. Accounts are credited to show an increase in revenue or liabilities.

In this lesson, you will learn what the post-closing trial balance is, why it’s important, and what accounts appear on it. As you can see, the accountant or bookkeeper first need to analyst the business transactions and then make the journal entries. And just like any other trial balance, total debits and total credits should be accounting equal. Yes, to complete the accounting cycle, you’ll need to run three trial balance reports. Once your adjusted trial balance has been completed, you’re ready to record post-closing entries for the month. So, if you would search the answer to the question “Which types of accounts will appear in the post-closing trial balance?

The post-closing trial balance report lists down all the individual accounts after accounting for the closing entries. At this point in the accounting cycle, all the temporary accounts have been closed and zeroed out to permanent accounts. Therefore, a post-closing trial balance will include a list of all permanent accounts that still have balances. This will be identical to the items appearing on a balance sheet.

If any income statement accounts still hold account totals or a balance, or if the income summary account is still listed with an amount, the closing process didn’t go as intended. It is important to review the accounts and troubleshoot any errors in the closing process once identified. Also, it determines whether any balances are remaining in the permanent accounts after closing entries have been journalized.

Author: Roman Kepczyk

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