Lesson 3: Accounting


You’re watching Video Vocab by businessenglish pod.com

Today we’re looking at business vocabulary related to Accounting.

  Balance sheet

Balance sheet is a summary of a company’s financial position at a specific point in time, usually the end of its financial year.

A company’s balance sheet should indicate the value of everything the company owns as well as everything that it owes its liability.
  “Our balance sheet is not as strong as last year, since we’ve taken some heavy losses on investments.”

An asset is anything owned by a company that can be converted into cash or used to generate income.

“Most of the company’s assets consist of accounts receivables from very risky customers and, until they’re paid, it’s hard to be sure of their actual value”

An asset maybe tangible like building or intangible like valuable patent or copyright

“Consulting firms usually have few tangible assets, and their main intangible asset is the reputation they’ve established”.

A liability is a financial obligation or debt held by a company.
Some common types of liabilities include accounts payable, bank loan, and outstanding taxes.


“Managing liabilities effectively is critical to good financial planning.”

Short-term liabilities

Short-term liabilities are usually those that must be paid within one year.

Long-term liabilities
Long-term liabilities are repayable after more than a year.

“Our short-term liabilities have grown very quickly this year, as we expanded into new territories”

A company profit is the amount business earned in a given period (usually a year) after deducting all expenses.

“Profits for many firms have declined due to a slowdown in consumer spending”

Profit margin
Profit margin is the percentage of gross income a company retains after all costs are deducted. If the cost of producing products is almost as high as selling price, the profit margin would be very low.

“The profit margin on luxury automobiles is much higher than on economy vehicles.”

A loss is negative profit.
If a single transaction costs more than it earns, the company is said to make a loss or take a loss or make congestion

“We’ve always taken a loss on our equipment sales, but we make it up by generating revenue through after-sales service.”

If a company’s profit for an entire year is negative, it is said to make a loss or run at a loss to that year.

“Companies that run at a loss for several years may be forced to stop trading on the Stock Exchange.”

Profit and loss statement
A profit and loss statement is one type of accounting report that companies publish on a regular basis.

Debt is money owed by a company to another company or individual.
Most corporate debt is in the form of loans from banks, or bonds that have been sold to investors.

“This year’s balance sheet shows that the company’s bank debts have been fully repaid”

A gross figure is a sum that does not include any deductions.

For example:
The total amount of money earned by selling a company’s products can be described as gross income; another term for gross income is revenue

 “The company’s gross sales have risen 20% in the last quarter alone.”

To gross
To gross can also be used as a verb, meaning “to earn gross income.”

“The film was a great success, and grossed more than $50 million on its first weekend.”

A net figure is a sum that includes all deductions.

Net income
The amount of money earned through a company’s sales, after subtracting all costs, associate with the sales, can be described as net income, another term for net income is profit.

“We netted more than $100,000 from a single day of direct-marketing sales.”

To net
To net can also be used as a verb, meaning “to earn net income”

The adjective pretax means before payment of tax.

Accountants normally show pretax profit or pretax income on one line of a company’s financial statement, and show profit after tax on a separate line.

  “Our overseas results look better on a pretax basis, because we operate in several countries where corporate taxes are very high.”

Now, it’s your turn to practice some of words we’ve studied in separate….

You will hear series of sentences with the words blank down or place with beep, repeat the whole sentence but say the missing words

For example, if you hear…
Some of your more recent <beep> may not be showing up in our records yet.
You should say……
Some of your more recent transactions may not be showing up in our records yet.
We’ll explain example answer after each exercise. Are you ready? Let’s begin:

Question 1

I expect the firm to make a <beep> this quarter unless our sales improve in March.

Answer 1
I expect the firm to make a loss this quarter unless our sales improve in March.

Question 2

Most of the companies <beep> consist of real estate projects in different stages of development.

Answer 2
Most of the companies’ assets consist of real estate projects in different stages of development.

Question 3

Gross income looks impressive, but after costs the "beep" profit is quite disappointing.

Answer 3

Gross income looks impressive, but after costs the net profit is quite disappointing.

Question 4

The new government’s policies will allow us to retain more of our <beep> earnings.

Answer 4
The new government’s policies will allow us to retain more of our pretax earnings.

You can visit the website at www.businessenglishpod.com to watch and download more video on business English.

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