Accounting Test 2 Flashcards

temporary accounts

The balance in accumulated depreciation decreases each year by the amount of depreciation taken. A payment on account has no effect on working capital but will increase the current ratio if it is already greater than 1.0.


If a business makes a profit, the owner has a more valuable business. Equity (what a company owes to its owner) is on the right side of the Accounting Equation. That’s the Credit side . Review all the Normal Balances standard listed within the document to gain pertinent knowledge of accounting at IU.

How to Know What to Debit and What to Credit in Accounting

A contra account contains a normal balance that is the reverse of the normal balance for that class of account. The contra accounts noted in the preceding table are usually set up as reserve accounts against declines in the usual balance in the accounts with which they are paired. Certain types of accounts have natural balances in financial accounting systems. Assets and expenses have natural debit balances. This means that positive values for assets and expenses are debited and negative balances are credited. Expenses normally have debit balances that are increased with a debit entry.

The effect on Equity is to decrease it. Consider Dividends to be a sub-account of Equity.

What are the Normal Balances of each type of account?

Ensure that the equation is balanced. Is increased by debits. Is decreased by credits. Has a normal balance of a debit. Is increased by credits.


Certain accounts are used for valuation purposes and are displayed on the financial statements opposite the normal balances. These accounts are called contra accounts. The debit entry to a contra account has the opposite effect as it would to a normal account. All this is basic and common sense for accountants, bookkeepers and other people experienced in studying balance sheets, but it can make a layman scratch his head. To better understand normal balances, one should first be familiar with accounting terms such as debits, credits, and the different types of accounts. Basically, once the basic accounting terminology is learned and understood, the normal balance for each specific industry will become second nature.


As mentioned, normal balances can either be credit or debit balances, depending on the account type. Since assets are on the left side of the accounting equation, both the Cash account and the Accounts Receivable account are expected to have debit balances. Therefore, the Cash account is increased with a debit entry of $2,000; and the Accounts Receivable account is decreased with a credit entry of $2,000. Since Cash is an asset account, its normal or expected balance will be a debit balance. Therefore, the Cash account is debited to increase its balance. In the first transaction, the company increased its Cash balance when the owner invested $5,000 of her personal money in the business.

What is the normal balance of cash?

Since Cash is an asset account, its normal or expected balance will be a debit balance.

Is decreased with a credit. Is increased with a credit. Each liability account has a normal debit balance. Let’s say there were a credit of $4,000 and a debit of $6,000 in the Accounts Payable account. Since Accounts Payable increases on the credit side, one would expect a normal balance on the credit side. However, the difference between the two figures in this case would be a debit balance of $2,000, which is an abnormal balance.

Accounting Student Guide

Right side of an account. Decrease side of an account.

  • In the liability accounts, the account balances are normally on the right side or credit side of the account.
  • In a general ledger, or any other accounting journal, one always sees columns marked “debit” and “credit.” The debit column is always to the left of the credit column.
  • The simplest account structure is shaped like the letter T.
  • Let’s recap which accounts have a Normal Debit Balance and which accounts have a Normal Credit Balance.
  • Expenses decrease Equity.
  • As noted earlier, expenses are almost always debited, so we debit Wages Expense, increasing its account balance.

For example, an allowance for uncollectable accounts offsets the asset accounts receivable. Because the allowance is a negative asset, a debit actually decreases the allowance. A contra asset’s debit is the opposite of a normal account’s debit, which increases the asset. Since assets are on the left side of the accounting equation, the asset account Equipment is expected to have a debit balance. Since the Equipment account is increasing by $3,000, a debit entry to Equipment for $3,000 is needed.

Accounting Final Milestone .docx

Depending on the account type, the sides that increase and decrease may vary. It is a type of account that is used to reduce or offset the balance of another related account. Accounts like purchase returns and sales returns, discounts or allowances are some of the common examples of a contra account. The types of accounts lying on the left side of these equations carry a debit balance while those on the right-side carry a credit balance. The other part of the entry will involve the asset account Cash, which is expected to have a debit balance. Since the Cash account is decreasing by $3,000, the Cash account must be credited for $3,000. The petty cash fund is a liability with a normal debit balance.

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