12 Uber-Cool Vintage Accounting & Business Documents

Think accounting records are boring? Written diligently, these 12 uber-cool accounting/business documents provides rich insights to the bookkeeper/accountant’s era.

From an elegantly drawn chicken to a receipt for buying 57 leeches, accounting records contains rich history found nowhere else. There could be fun doing accounting, conservatively speaking. 😉

Title-less book by Thomas Tye (1712-1783)

Thomas Tye's Account book starts in 1737

Thomas Tye (1712-1783) came to London from Derbyshire in 1738 to “seek his fortune”.He was in business, mostly in the City of London and he recorded all expenditure with great care. He also recorded tit bits of news and information. Some of this is fascinating.

His nephew’s wife blogs about this find here.

Donald Paterson’s Journal, January 1835

Donald Peterson 1821 24

Wonderful handwriting! This document appears to be business ledgers and accounts for a firm in London, England but there is nothing to identify the business or the owner. Within these ledgers are workbooks dating from 1821-24 on business, mathematics, etc. and the name Donald Paterson is doodled on these quite a bit.

Larger image here

Source: snap-happy1

Bookkeeper and Accountant Advertisement 1954

Advertisement for Accountant

From Popular Mechanics magazine, October 1954

Source: jackieinmi

George Watt Store Mann Street Gosford, 1885

George Watt Store Mann Street Gosford 1885

The only known surviving photograph from a series taken by Charles Bayliss in 1884/85. The series was commissioned by Boyd and King, for their Gosford Model Farms subdivision prospectus. Fortunately many photographs were reproduced in the prospectus in the form of lithographs, and these survive today. This is a close-up of a larger image. It is one of the earliest surviving images of life in Gosford NSW.

Gosford Coupons

Gosford coupons

Gosford Coupon

Gosford Coupons from a full, unredeemed booklet found in the former Martin family house at Matcham, NSW.

Source: gostalgia

Cash Cheque 1972

cheque 1972

This would be the 1972 equivalent of getting 20 from the ATM. The check was cashed at Studewood Grocery Store which is now part of the Fiesta chain.   Here’s where the bank was located. There is a Chase bank there now, but it’s not the same building.
Source: pmcd9

Unusual Invoice Selling ‘57 Choice Leeches’

1870 57 choice leeches

An unusual Victorian illustrated invoice from Fitch & Nottingham, 16 & 17 St. Peter Street, Hackney Road, London NE. ’57 Choice Leeches’ sold to Swindon businessman Mr John Green, May 12th 1870.

Source: Swindon Collection, Central Library : Scan of original invoice from their ephemera collection. Date: 12/5/1870. Repository: Swindon Collection, Central Library.

Canning & Co’s General Journal, 1928

Canning and Company itemised account Gosford 1928

Canning & Co. Receipt

Canning and Company receipt

Murphy’s Holiday Cottages Receipt, 1939

Murphy holiday cottages receipt 1939

Image a week’s stay at a hotel for just $5.10! See what inflation has done to us!

Source: gostalgia

Motimers Pte Ltd – Store Interior

Mortimers store

Motimers’ Receipt

Mortimers store docket

1918 Liberty Weekly Income Record and Income Tax Record

1918 Liberty Weekly Income Record and Income Tax Record 02

1918 Liberty Weekly Income Record and Income Tax Record ~ ‘The Proper Book of Records of Your Business’. The book’s titled page is dated 1918 & pages follow bookkeeping records from January 1918 through May 1923.

The handwriting is in blue, black & red fountain pen & is clear & neat with very few mark-outs. Some ink-ie splotches where the fountain pen blooped but, all in all, a very neat Bookkeeper of Record.

Source: Le Petit Poulailler

Vintage Ledger Paper

vintage ledger paper

A simple, high resolution artwork from autumnsensation. Free for download and use. See source.

Source: autumnsensation

Counting Chickens

Self-expression of a bored accountant? This artwork done with spray paint/ gouache on antique ledger page (about chickens)

Source: Amy Rice

Dump the Monetary Concept – Measure What Makes Life Worthwhile!

“Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.” Albert Einstein, physicist (1879 – 1955)

The principle of monetary concept states that anything which cannot be measured in monetary
terms will not be considered as a part of the accounting data. While accounting captures the numerical performance of a business, many will agree that numbers tell only the part of a business’ story.

Work culture, morale and happiness of workers, teamwork and job satisfaction all play a part in make a business successful.

In this TED Talk, Chip Conley shares on Measuring What Makes Life Worthwhile, some of points Chip covered includes:

– 94% of the business owners believes that the intangible things are important ( things like intellectual property, corporate culture and brand loyalty).

– Only 5% of these leaders have a means to measure these intangibles in the business.

– An alternative definition of success introduced by the King of Bhutan: The Gross Happiness Index. (GHI)

– The science behind the art: the metrics of the GHI.

Enjoy!

[VIDEO LENGTH: 17:40 MINS]

About Chip Conley (from TED.com)

Chip Conley In 1987, at the age of 26 and seeking a little “joy of life,” Chip Conley founded Joie de Vivre Hospitality by transforming a small motel in San Francisco’s seedy Tenderloin district into the now-legendary Phoenix.

Today, Joie de Vivre operates nearly 40 unique hotels across California, each built on an innovative design formula that inspires guests to experience an “identity refreshment” during their visits.

During the dotcom bust in 2001, Conley found himself in the self-help section of the bookstore, where he became reacquainted with one of the most famous theories of human behavior — Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, which separates human desires into five ascending levels, from base needs such as eating to the highest goal of self-actualization, characterized by the full realization and achievement of one’s potential. Influenced by Maslow’s pyramid, Conley revamped his business model to focus on the intangible, higher needs of his company’s three main constituencies — employees, customers and investors. He credits this shift for helping Joie de Vivre triple its annual revenues between 2001 and 2008.

Conley has written three books, including his most recent, PEAK: How Great Companies Get Their Mojo from Maslow, and is at work on two new ones, Emotional Equations and PEAK Leadership. He consults widely on transformative enterprises, corporate social responsibility and creative business development. He traveled to Bhutan last year to study its Gross National Happiness index, the country’s unique method of measuring success and its citizens’ quality of life.

National Accounting Quiz 2010

Ngee Ann LogoThe National Accounting Quiz (NAQ) 2010 is the biggest annual accounting quiz organised in Singapore since 2004! NAQ 2010 promises to be a fun-filled event. Students will be immersed in a series of accounting-related activities to revise their accounting concepts and to stimulate their passion for accounting.

The event will take place on 21 July 2010, from 1.00pm to 5.00pm, at the Ngee Ann Polytechnic Convention Centre. Click on the button below for more information!

National Accounting Quiz 20102

The Accountant’s Story : Inside the Violent World of the Medellín Cartel

The Accountant's StoryCame across this audio book whilst in the National Library. Seems like a good read. Here’s what I read from the back of the CD cover:

Publisher’s Summary
“I have many scars. Some of them are physical, but many more are scars on my soul. A bomb sent to kill me while I was in a maximum security prison has made me blind, yet now I see the world more clearly than I have ever seen it before. I have lived an incredible adventure. I watched as my brother, Pablo Escobar, became the most successful criminal in history, but also a hero to many of the people of Colombia. My brother was loved and he was feared. Hundreds of thousands of people marched in his funeral procession, and certainly as many people celebrated his death.”
These are the words of Roberto Escobar-the top accountant for the notorious and deadly Medellín Cartel, and brother of Pablo Escobar, the most famous drug lord in history. At the height of his reign, Pablo’s multibillion-dollar operation smuggled tons of cocaine each week into countries all over the world. Roberto and his ten accountants kept track of all the money. Only Pablo and Roberto knew where it was stashed-and what it bought. 
And the amounts of money were simply staggering. According to Roberto, it cost $2,500 every month just to purchase the rubber bands needed to wrap the stacks of cash. The biggest problem was finding a place to store it: from secret compartments in walls and beneath swimming pools to banks and warehouses everywhere. There was so much money that Roberto would sometimes write off ten percent as “spoilage,” meaning either rats had chewed up the bills or dampness had ruined the cash. 
Roberto writes about the incredible violence of the cartel, but he also writes of the humanitarian side of his brother. Pablo built entire towns, gave away thousands of houses, paid people’s medical expenses, and built schools and hospitals. Yet he was responsible for the horrible deaths of thousands of people. 
In short, this is the story of a world of riches almost beyond mortal imagination, and in his own words, Roberto Escobar tells all: building a magnificent zoo at Pablo’s opulent home, the brothers’ many escapes into the jungles of Colombia, devising ingenious methods to smuggle tons of cocaine into the United States, bribing officials with literally millions of dollars-and building a personal army to protect the Escobar family against an array of enemies sworn to kill them. 
Few men in history have been more beloved-or despised-than Pablo Escobar. Now, for the first time, his story is told by the man who knew him best: his brother, Roberto. but also a hero to many of the people of Colombia. My brother was loved and he was feared. Hundreds of thousands of people marched in his funeral procession, and certainly as many people celebrated his death.”
These are the words of Roberto Escobar-the top accountant for the notorious and deadly Medellín Cartel, and brother of Pablo Escobar, the most famous drug lord in history. At the height of his reign, Pablo’s multibillion-dollar operation smuggled tons of cocaine each week into countries all over the world. Roberto and his ten accountants kept track of all the money. Only Pablo and Roberto knew where it was stashed-and what it bought. 
And the amounts of money were simply staggering. According to Roberto, it cost $2,500 every month just to purchase the rubber bands needed to wrap the stacks of cash. The biggest problem was finding a place to store it: from secret compartments in walls and beneath swimming pools to banks and warehouses everywhere. There was so much money that Roberto would sometimes write off ten percent as “spoilage,” meaning either rats had chewed up the bills or dampness had ruined the cash. 
Roberto writes about the incredible violence of the cartel, but he also writes of the humanitarian side of his brother. Pablo built entire towns, gave away thousands of houses, paid people’s medical expenses, and built schools and hospitals. Yet he was responsible for the horrible deaths of thousands of people. 
In short, this is the story of a world of riches almost beyond mortal imagination, and in his own words, Roberto Escobar tells all: building a magnificent zoo at Pablo’s opulent home, the brothers’ many escapes into the jungles of Colombia, devising ingenious methods to smuggle tons of cocaine into the United States, bribing officials with literally millions of dollars-and building a personal army to protect the Escobar family against an array of enemies sworn to kill them. 
Few men in history have been more beloved-or despised-than Pablo Escobar. Now, for the first time, his story is told by the man who knew him best: his brother, Roberto.

Difference between Carriage Inwards and Carriage Outwards?

 

carriage inwards or outwards Carriage refers to the costs of transporting goods to and from the firm. In the past, the purchase of goods would often result in two charges – the cost of the goods purchased and the cost of having them delivered to the business premises.

From the buyer’s point of view, the delivery charge would he referred to as “carriage inwards”. Any such carriage charges should be debited to the carriage inwards account in the general ledger.

The carriage inwards account is written off to the trading account at the end of the accounting period.

When the buyer sells the goods to his customer, he incurs further delivery charges. This cost is referred to as ‘carriage outwards”.  This costs are debited to the carriage outwards account in the general ledger.

Any carriage outwards charges are usually included in an item called ‘selling and distribution costs”.   Since this cost is incurred after the goods have been made ready for sale, the account is written off to the profit and loss account at the end of the accounting period.

Each type of carriage will be an expense and therefore will have a debit balance in the trial balance. However, these will appear in different sections of the trading and profit and loss account.

Accounting Treatment of Carriage Inwards and Carriage Outwards

 

Carriage Outwards 

Journal  Entry for Carriage Inwards:

Debit   Carriage Inwards

Credit    Bank

Journal  Entry for Carriage Outwards:

Debit   Carriage Outwards

Credit    Bank

Treatment in Trading, Profit and Loss Accounts:

Carriage inwards Trading account expense
Carriage outwards Profit & loss account expense

Summary:

Carriage inwards is connected with the cost of getting goods into the business and ready for sale. As a result, it will be added on in the calculation for the cost of goods sold. Carriage outwards does not have anything to do with the cost of getting goods into saleable condition. Therefore it will appear with all the other overhead expenses and the profit and loss account.

Good to know:

Nowadays, the price quoted for goods being purchased will usually be inclusive of any delivery charge, and so a separate charge for carriage inwards (or outwards) is not very common. In cases where separate carriage inwards charges are incurred, the cost should be added on to the cost of purchases in the trading account. Consequently, a proportion of carriage inwards charges should be added to the purchase cost when determining the cost of closing stock.

 

Image courtesy of dok1 and Batman Comic Generator

What is the Difference between Sole Proprietorships, Partnerships and Limited Liability Companies?

Fish Soup @ Geylang East

Fish Soup @ Geylang East by kerfern

Sole Proprietorship

A sole-proprietor is a person who owns a sole-proprietorship business that is registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). A self-employed person is a person who earns a living by carrying on a trade, business, profession or vocation. A sole-proprietor/self-employed person do not report to a boss, because he is his your own boss. The income that he earns is considered business profits, not salary.  

Characteristics of Sole Proprietorship: 

  • Owned by one person or one company.  
  • A sole-proprietorship is not a legal entity (i.e. it cannot sue or be sued in its own name and it cannot own or hold any property). 
  • Profits are taxed at personal income tax rates. 

Some business owners choose to create partnerships or limited liability companies instead of a corporation. A partnership can also be called a firm. This refers to an association of a group of individuals working together in a business or professional practice.

Singapore Business District night view

Singapore Business District night view by *etoile

 

While corporations have rigid rules about how they are structured, partnerships and limited liability companies allow the division of management authority, profit sharing and ownership rights among the owners to be very flexible.

Partnerships fall into two categories. General partners are subject to unlimited liability. If a business can’t pay its debts, its creditors can demand payment from the general partners’ personal assets. General partners have the authority and responsibility to manage the business. They’re analogous to the president  and other officers of a corporation.

 

Limited partners escape the unlimited liability that the general partners have. They are not responsible as individuals, for the liabilities of the partnership. These are junior partners who have ownership rights to the profits of the business, but they don’t generally participate in the high-level management of the business. A partnership must have one or more general partners.

A limited liability company (LLC) is becoming more prevalent among smaller businesses. An LLC is like a corporation regarding limited liability and it’s like a partnership regarding the flexibility of dividing profit among the owners. Its advantage over other types of ownership is its flexibility in how profit and management authority are determined.

This can have a downside. The owners must enter into very detailed agreements about how the profits and management responsibilities are divided. It can get very complicated and generally requires the services of a lawyer to draw up the agreement.

A partnership or LLC agreement specifies how profits will be divided among the owners. While stockholders of a corporation receive a share of profit that’s directly related to how many shares they own, a partnership or LLC does not have to divide profit according to how much each partner invested. Invested capital is only of the factors that are used in allocating and distributing profits.

Registering a business in Singapore is easy:

http://www.business.gov.sg/EN/StartingUp/RegisterYourBusiness/

What does an audit report contain?

 

 

reports

Most audit reports on financial statements give the business a clean bill of health, or a clean opinion. At the other end of the spectrum, the auditor may state that the financial statements are misleading and should not be relied upon. This negative audit report is called an adverse opinion. That’s the big stick that auditors carry. They have the power to give a company’s financial statements an adverse opinion and no business wants that. The threat of an adverse opinion almost always motivates a business to give way to the auditor and change its accounting or disclosure in order to avoid getting the kiss of death of an adverse opinion. An adverse audit opinion says that the financial statements of the business are misleading. The SEC does not tolerate adverse opinions by auditors of public businesses; it would suspend trading in a company’s stock share if the company received an adverse opinion from its CPA auditor.

 

One modification to an auditor’s report is very serious – when the CPA firm says that it has substantial doubts about the capability of the business to continue as a going concern. A going concern is a business that has sufficient financial wherewithal and momentum to continue it normal operations into the foreseeable future and would be able to absorb a bad turn of events without having to default on its liabilities. A going concern does not face an imminent financial crisis or any pressing financial emergency. A business could be under some financial distress but overall still be judged a going concern. Unless there is evidence to the contrary, the CPA auditor assumes that the business is a going concern. If an auditor has serious concerns about whether the business is a going concern, these doubts are spelled out in the auditor’s report.

What is acid test ratio and ROA ratio?

 

numbersInvestors calculate the acid test ratio, also known as the quick ratio or the pounce ratio. This ratio excludes inventory and prepaid expenses, which the current ratio includes, and it limits assets to cash and items that the business can quickly convert to cash. This limited category of assets is known as quick or liquid assets. The acid-text ratio is calculated by dividing the liquid assets by the total current liabilities. 

 

This ratio is also known as the pounce ratio to emphasize that you’re calculating for a worst-case scenario, where the business’s creditors could pounce on the business and demand quick payment of the business’s liabilities. Short term creditors do not have the right to demand immediate payment, except in unusual circumstances. This ratio is a conservative way to look at a business’s capability to pay its short-term liabilities.

 

One factor that affects the bottom-line profitability of a business is whether it uses debt to its advantage. A business may realize a financial leverage gain, meaning it earns more profit on the money it has borrowed than the interest paid for the use of the borrowed money. A good part of a business’s net income for the year may be due to financial leverage. The ROA ratio is determined by dividing the earnings before interest and income tax (EBIT) by the net operating assets. 

 

An investor compares the ROA with the interest rate at which the corporation borrowed money. If a business’s ROA is 14 percent and the interest rate on its debt is 8 percent, the business’s net gain on its capital is 6 percent more than what it’s paying in interest. 

 

ROA is a useful ratio for interpreting profit performance, aside from determining financial gain or loss. ROA is called a capital utilization test that measures how profit before interest and income tax was earned on the total capital employed by the business.