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Resources for Accountants, CPAs and the general public!

At its most basic level, the word accounting means keeping a record.

Accounts may be kept of just about anything, such as goods and services and promises to deliver them or expectations to receive them. A way of recording relevant dates is usually included.

From prehistoric timers to the present, various methods have been derived to keep accounts. Accountants are professionals who are familiar with the various methods of accounting and how to adapt them to a clients particular needs.

A generally recognized high level of competency in accounting is the CPA (Certified Public Accountant ) degree. To achieve it one must pass a test provided by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

Following is a breakdown of different accounting specialties.

A Controller is responsible for the managing the overall accounting requirements of a company.

Internal auditing
Internal auditors continually monitor company records. They also have input on the best ways to do the audit. Many are certified by the Institute of Internal Affairs and earn a CIA degree.

Financial analysis
Financial analysts review financial data with the goal of improving the market position and profit of the company. This also includes identifying and predicting trends.

Forensic accounting
When criminal activity is found, such as fraud, forensic accountants are brought in to investigate. They usually have a CPA degree and/or a CFE (Certified Fraud Examiner) degree.

Tax accounting
Tax accountants are responsible for the proper preparation and submission of taxes.

Accounts payable and receivable
These accountants keep track of what a company owes, has payed, is owed and has received.

Generally qualified accountant
Junior level accountants do tasks such as reconciling accounts, filing taxes, entering data in journals and analyzing accounts. Tasks assigned to a more senior level include preparing a budget and assessing risks