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What is a Journal in Accounting?

Journal - Accounting (Definition)

A company's financial transactions are recorded in an accounting journal. Business transactions are recorded sequentially, and journals allow companies to keep track of high-volume transactions. They could include a sales journal, purchasing journal and general journal. Transactions were originally recorded in a journal by hand and then posted to the general ledger.

Today there are automated accounting systems in place through accounting software, though some business owners prefer the “old school” method of keeping everything in writing. A journal generally includes the date of a transaction, the accounts involved, and the value of the transaction. They are an important part of record-keeping, making it easier to review and move records at any time during the accounting process. Journals are also an important part of auditing, along with the general ledger.

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