What is Retained Earnings in QuickBooks

The QuickBooks Retained Earnings account is a unique kind of account that, upon creation of a balance sheet, automatically stores […]

The QuickBooks Retained Earnings account is a unique kind of account that, upon creation of a balance sheet, automatically stores the profit or loss from the previous year. QB Online will move the net profits from the previous fiscal year as retained earnings to your balance sheet during the next fiscal year. Once the invoices have been sent out and the bills have been paid, the net income is determined. After the transfer is complete, users can monitor the growth of the firm as the company’s balance becomes zero for the upcoming fiscal year.

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A crucial component of any firm is retained earnings. If it didn’t exist, a lot of businesses would either have to take out large bank loans or fail in the marketplace. Retained earnings are the funds left over from a business’s net income at the conclusion of an accounting period after dividends are paid to shareholders in the case of a corporation, or owners in the case of a sole proprietorship or partnership.

It is the earnings that the business keeps after allocating all other profits to the appropriate locations, as the name implies. One component of owner’s equity, also known as shareholder’s equity, is retained earnings.

These profits are meant to be reinvested in order to fund the acquisition of additional corporate assets and support the business’s expansion. Retained earnings are thus used by corporations, but only for purposes of advancing the activities and assets of the company. This article will help you in understanding the topic of retained earnings in QuickBooks.

What is Retained Earnings in QuickBooks

A company’s retained earnings are the funds it holds in its profits rather than distributing them to shareholders in the form of dividends. It is a crucial component of the balance sheet calculation since it represents the total equity of a business. Put another way, retained earnings are the profits that a corporation retains for itself.

The amount that the company has paid out in dividends to shareholders is deducted from its net income to determine retained earnings. For instance, a business with $100,000 in profit would have $50,000 in retained earnings if it chose to distribute $50,000 in dividends. One might allocate the remaining portion of the profit towards funding expansion, clearing debt, or filing taxes.

Is Retained Earnings the Same as Earnings?

No, the earnings and retained earnings are not the same thing. Retained earnings are the profits that a corporation retains for internal use rather than distributing them to shareholders in the form of dividends. But earnings can also refer to the quantity of profit a company makes over a given period of time.

The two diverge significantly in the following ways:

  • Earnings are determined during a certain time period, whereas retained earnings represent the overall profit a corporation has kept over time.
  • Net income, which deducts taxes and debt interest, is typically used to compute earnings. On the other hand, retained earnings do not deduct anything.

What Type of Account is Retained Earnings in QuickBooks

Under the Equity part of the balance sheet, retained earnings is represented by the capital letter “E.” It is determined by taking the company’s net income, deducting the amount of dividends paid, and adding any capital increases through the issuance of new stock. This sum represents the company’s retained earnings.

Retained earnings, along with other balance sheet accounts, are located in the company file’s sections on assets, liabilities, and equity. Accordingly, you may access the retained earnings amount in QuickBooks by going to the Equity section, selecting the account list, and then entering “Retained Earnings” in the designated field to filter the list.

What is Retained Earnings on a Balance Sheet QuickBooks?

The equity portion of the balance sheet contains the retained profits account, which is represented by the capital letter “E.” The computation of retained earnings involves deducting dividend payments from net income and adding any capital increases from issuing stock. Retained earnings are the amount of earnings that the company has kept for itself.

Retained earnings are located in the Assets, Liabilities, and Equity parts of the company file, along with other balance sheet accounts to be aware of. The retained profits amount can therefore be viewed in QuickBooks by first choosing the Equity section, after which you can filter the list of accounts by entering “Retained Earnings” in the designated space.

Read About:

How to Zero out Retained Earnings in QuickBooks?

How to View Retained Earnings Account Details in QuickBooks Online

At year-end, QuickBooks Online transfers funds to retained earnings through an electronic swap. Unless additional entries have been made to the Retained Earnings account, this swap is not visible on any report.

You can check specifics for the Net Income (Loss) amount and run a Profit and Loss report to understand what constitutes your Retained Earnings.

View Details of the Retained Earnings Account

The amount of your company’s revenue and outlays for each of the prior years is displayed in your retained earnings account. QuickBooks Online adds retained earnings, or net income from the previous fiscal year, to your balance sheet automatically at the beginning of each new fiscal year.

But you can’t just click on the Balance Sheet and choose Retained Earnings to see further information. All of your net profit (or loss) from prior fiscal years is rolled over into the Retained Earnings account, which QuickBooks Online automatically and electronically transfers money from. No visible transactions are recorded for this account.

As such, to find out what constitutes your Retained Earnings, you must run your Profit and Loss statement from the prior year.

View the Profit and Loss Detail Report

View the report on Profit and Loss here.

  • Navigate to Reports (direct me there).
  • Choose the Profit and Loss report after finding it.
  • Choose All Dates from the drop-down list under Report Period.
  • Click on “Run report.
  • The Profit and Loss Detail report for All Dates will open after you select the Net Income amount.

This report, Profit and Loss Detail, lists every transaction that went towards the net profit or loss that QuickBooks Online transferred to your Retained Earnings account automatically.

View the Profit and Loss Report by Year

To more readily track Retained Earnings over time, you can see the Profit and Loss report by year:

  • Navigate to Reports.
  • Choose the Profit and Loss report after finding it.
  • Click on Customize in the Profit and Loss report that is open.
  • To view the section, pick the Rows/Columns item in the Customize report panel.
  • Choose the Years option from the Columns dropdown.
  • Click on “Run report.

The report shows the amounts from the Profit and Loss transferred into the Retained Earnings account year over year so you can see the exact amount as it happened.

Examine the account Quick Report if the amount shown on the Profit and Loss report and the current Retained Earnings amount differs.

Examine the Retained Earnings Account Quick Report

There may have been transactions filed against this account that solely affected Balance Sheet accounts if the amount on the Profit and Loss report differs from the amount now reported for the Retained Earnings account.

The Quick Report for this account allows you to view these user-created transactions.

  • Select Chart of Accounts (Take me there) after going to Transactions.
  • Search for the account for Retained Earnings.
  • Choose “Run Report” from the dropdown menu in the Action column.
  • Choose All Dates from the drop-down list under the Report period.
  • Click on “Run report.

The Retained Earnings account figure is affected by any user-created transactions, which are displayed in the report.

How To View Retained Earnings in the Balance Sheet

The steps to display Retained Earnings in the Balance Sheet are as follows:

  • Access Reports.
  • Locate and select the balance sheet.
  • In this report with an open balance sheet, Look over every item under Retained Earnings to see the net earnings for your business.

You can also use journal entries at the conclusion of your fiscal year to distribute the funds in your Retained Earnings account. Just remember that your Retained Earnings account will increase anytime the Credit column increases and the Debit column decreases. Additionally, remember to equalize each debit with an equal amount of credit.

How To Adjust Retained Earnings in QuickBooks Online?

You can take the following steps in QuickBooks to adjust retained earnings:

  • To begin with, you have to click the + New option from the menu bar to start a journal entry.
  • Next, you have to select Journal Entry from the drop-down menu.
  • In the Date field, you have to enter the date of the adjustment.
  • Choose the Retained Earnings account that is located in the Account column.
  • Enter the amount you wish to change the Retained Earnings account by in the Debit box. The balance of retained earnings will increase the retained earnings balance.
  • Choose the account that you wish to reduce in the next row, then type the desired adjustment in the Credit column. This will balance the journal entry and reverse the debit.
  • You can add any important notes or memos in the Memo field.
  • After making sure the journal entry is accurate, you have to click Save and Close.

Note: It should be noted that changes to retained profits should be made carefully and that seeking assistance from an accountant or financial advisor is strongly advised before making any changes.

Help With Retained Earnings in QuickBooks

Adjusting of Account

With balance sheets, journal entries, or checks, QuickBooks enables you to take money out of the Retained Earnings account. Every time you add a new transaction to a balance sheet, you may choose to deduct equity money from the total by selecting Retained Earnings from the Account drop-down list. When adding an item to your General Journal or entering check information following the writing of a check from money from Retained Earnings, you have the option to designate the Retained Earnings account. Simply remember to record or save the data each time you enter new information in order to modify your retained earnings amount.

Searching for Account

Even though Retained Earnings is an automatically produced account, if you are experiencing problems discovering it, it’s possible that you have disabled or erased the account. Click the “Lists” menu and choose “Charts of Accounts” to display inactive accounts. To reactivate the account, click the “Accounts” button, then the “Show Inactive Accounts” button, and take out the “X” next to Retained Earnings. By selecting “Company & Financial” from the “Reports” menu and choosing the “Balance Sheet Standard” report, you may also create a new retained earnings account. If the prior Retained Earnings account has been destroyed, QuickBooks will create a new one when the report is generated.


Now you understand that the amount of profit retained by a company is known as retained earnings. Understanding what constitutes retained earnings and why they matter is just as crucial as knowing what they are. Retained earnings hold significance since they indicate the amount of profit a company has retained within and can be allocated towards debt repayment or expansion.

The important thing to remember is that earnings are determined over an extended period of time, while retained earnings are the profit a corporation has kept within the organization. Retained earnings only care about profit; they are unrelated to earnings. These take into consideration dividends, capital expenses, taxes, and reserves.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How Can the Retained Earnings Account Quick Report Be Reviewed?

Only transactions that have an impact on balance sheet accounts can be reported against this account in the event that the amount shown for the Retired Earnings Account differs from the total amount in the profit and loss report.

Observe these actions:

  • Locate Settings and select Chart of Accounts first.
  • Search for the account called Retained Earnings.
  • From the drop-down menu for the Action column, select Run Report.
  • Next, choose All Dates from the Report period drop-down menu.
  • Click on “Run report.”

This report shows every transaction that was created by the user and has an impact on the structure of the Retained Earnings account.

How Retained Earning Works?

When you use QuickBooks to set up a new firm, the programme automatically creates an equity account called “Retained Earnings”. QuickBooks also automatically moves the amount from other business accounts to retained earnings on the closing date you specify for your fiscal year. Accounting-wise, this transfer is required to guarantee that the figures you have for the current fiscal year only include the transactions and performance of your company during that time. You may also monitor your company’s capital for expenditures such as purchasing new equipment or making payments to partners or owners by using the Retained Earnings account.

How Can You View the Account?

With Reports, you may quickly check your Retained Earnings account by clicking on the menu and choosing “Company & Financial.” Then select “Balance Sheet Standard“; the retained earnings part of the balance sheet will show up under the equity section. To view the account’s transactions, click the “Company” option and choose “Chart of Accounts.” In order to view the whole list of transactions, clicking the “QuickZoom” button adjacent to the Retained Earnings entry will be at the bottom of the chart.

How is QuickBooks Configured for Retained Earnings?

The net profit (or loss) from all prior fiscal years is rolled over into the Retained Earnings account, which QuickBooks Online automatically and electronically transfers money from your net income or loss into while not creating any visible transactions for you.

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