The income statement, also called the profit and loss statement, is used to calculate profits by comparing revenue to expenses. It compares your income to your expenses and shows you the amount of profit or loss over a specified amount of time. This is the best report for understanding whether your business is profitable or losing money. The five components of the income statement are sales (or revenue), cost of goods sold, gross profit, operating expenses, and net income or loss. Many small businesses choose to create income statements on a monthly basis to find patterns in profits and expenditures.
The income statement is one of the three key financial statements used to assess a company’s financial position. The other two are the balance sheet and the cash flow statement. These financial statements should be reviewed at least every quarter to evaluate a company’s financial performance, value, and growth. They are used for financial projections, to estimate the potential for new projects, to set goals for the future, and to secure funding.