a record of a business transaction. When you buy something on credit, the company you are dealing with sets up an “account”. This means it sets up a record of what you buy and what you pay. You will do the same thing with any customers to whom you extend credit.

account payee only

words often written on crossed cheques, which direct the bank to pay the cheque only to the bank account of the payee.


a qualified person who is skilled at managing and analysing business financial records.

accounts payable

is money you owe to suppliers and other business creditors as a result of purchases of stock and other expenses such as overheads and taxes.

accounts receivable

a record of what is owed to you. All of the credit “accounts” – the record of what each customer owes you – taken together are your “accounts receivable”.


in relation to the GST, acquisitions include the things you buy (goods, services and anything else) for your business. They also include many other transactions, such as obtaining advice or information, taking out a lease of business premises or hiring business equipment.


a declaration in writing on oath, made before a person legally qualified for the purpose.


the gradual process of writing off the cost of an asset, or paying off a liability by means of a sinking fund, over a period of time.

articles of association

the basic document of a registered company defining its internal organisation. It is one of two fundamental documents on which the registration of a company is based. See memorandum of association.


anything of worth that is owned. The assets of a business are money in the bank, accounts receivable, securities held in the name of the business, property or buildings, equipment, fixtures, merchandise for sale or being made, supplies and all things of value that the business owns.


detailed checking of the financial records of a business by an independent qualified person (auditor) in order to verify their correctness or to detect errors or fraud.

Australian Business Number (ABN)

an identifier for dealings with the Australian Taxation Office and for future dealings with other government departments and agencies.

authorised capital

the total amount of capital which a company, by its memorandum of association, is authorised to offer for subscription. See also, paid up capital.


an agreement having the force of law, which sets out working conditions and wages for certain types of employment.


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