Control Account Definition

A common example of a control account is the general ledger account entitled Accounts Receivable. Ledger AccountsLedger in accounting records and processes a firm’s financial data, taken from journal entries. Accounting software will automatically categorize data and create control accounts and subledgers, allowing for simple data segmenting, as well as accurate accounting practices. Smaller companies may be able to rely on control accounts if they remain balanced using double-entry accounting. With accounts receivable, as invoices go out the control account is debited, which increases the balance.

  • These stock item lists are derived from subsidiary ledger accounts of an individual stock item.
  • Following several high profile corporate accounting scandals at Enron, Tyco, and WorldCom, from 2000 to 2002, regulators wanted to usher in a new era of heightened financial and operational protocols.
  • A control account is a natural management point for planning and control since it represents the work assigned to one responsible organizational element for a single program Work Breakdown Structure element.
  • Read why control accounts are used, what they can’t do, and why the general ledger can’t be ignored altogether.

A company that sells products on credit may have many transactions in the accounts receivable subledger. The details of those transactions live in the subledger and the balance is reported to the control account. The control account for accounts receivable will only show the total amount that is owed to the company at a point in time without all the details of each customer’s transaction.

Analytical Questions from Procurement Management Knowledge Area

ReconciliationReconciliation is the process of comparing account balances to identify any financial inconsistencies, discrepancies, omissions, or even fraud. At the end of any accounting period, reconciliation involves matching balances and ensuring that debits from one account for one Control Account Definition transaction is same as the credit to another account for the same transaction. Control accounts speed up the process of producing management accounts information as the control account balance can be used without waiting for the individual balances to be reconciled and extracted.

What is the meaning of control account?

A control account is an account which contains the debit and credit totals of other accounts, and is used to prepare financial statements. A control account is a summary account, where entries are made from totals of transactions for a period.

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Examples of control account

A company can have hundreds or thousands of customers with current accounts receivable balances. The total of all of these accounts is carried forward into the A/R control account, which appears in the general ledger and thefinancial statements. For example, accounts receivable records every transaction, including customer information, sale particulars, returns, refunds, and payments in its sub-ledger.

Control Account Definition

However, the details involving specific customers’ accounts will be found in a subsidiary ledger. Other examples of controlling accounts and their subsidiary ledgers include “accounts payable” and “equipment” . Control accounts provide a high-level picture of a company’s transaction records. If the balances in the control account do not match the subtotal of the subledgers, then there is an error that must be remedied.

Categories: Bookkeeping


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