cash basis accounting

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Related to cash basis accounting: Accrual basis accounting

Cash Basis Accounting

A system of accounting that recognizes revenue in the order in which it is received, and expenses on the same basis. Cash basis accounting does not deal with accounts receivable or accounts payable and only recognizes transactions actually paid for. This accounting system is easiest and perhaps best for organizations with few or no credit sales. See also: Accrual Accounting Convention.

cash basis accounting

A method of accounting in which the receipt and payment of cash are the basis for recording transactions. Thus it is not the date on which goods and services are received that matters, as in accrual accounting, but the dates on which the cash changes hands for the transactions. Cash basis accounting is typically used for tax purposes by individuals but not by corporations. Compare accrual accounting.

Cash basis accounting.

Cash basis accounting is one of two ways of recording revenues and expenses. Using this method, a company records income on its books when it receives a payment and expenses when it makes a payment.

In accrual accounting, by comparison, a company counts revenue as it's earned and expenses as they're incurred.

For example, when a magazine company sells annual subscriptions, it receives the cash for the subscriptions at the beginning of the year, but it doesn't earn the whole amount of the subscription cost until it has sent the subscriber a full year's issues of the magazine.

In cash basis accounting, paid subscriptions are recorded as revenue when the company receives the payments. In accrual accounting, the company records revenue only as the subscription is fulfilled.

A $24 subscription for 12 monthly issues of a magazine would result in immediate revenue of $24 in cash basis accounting, versus an accrual of $2 of revenue each month under accrual accounting.

References in periodicals archive ?
There's nothing wrong with using cash basis accounting so long as it reasonably and accurately represents the true financial accounting and position of the organization," said Andrew Lang, national director of nonprofit services for BDO Seidman, an accounting and management firm based in Chicago.
The statement requires accrual basis accounting for such benefits as opposed to the Company's previous method of cash basis accounting.
Finances appear to be well-maintained, although analyses and comparisons are somewhat limited given the use of cash basis accounting.
The use of cash basis accounting, which is allowable under state law and typical for many districts in Illinois, limits transparency of the district's current financial position.
Financial Management: New features allow users to quickly respond to organizational changes, streamline balancing and reconciliation with enhanced reporting capabilities, simplify management of fixed assets, and leverage enhancements to the cash basis accounting functionality.