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General Ledger

The general ledger or more commonly, ledger, is a bookkeeping and accounting term for the summary of financial transactions recorded for a business or organization. The general ledger organizes financial information to provide balances for separate accounts for an accounting period.

The general ledger includes a debit and credit for every entry transaction and should balance meaning that debits and credits should be the same based on double-entry accounting practices. Otherwise, the ledger is said to be out of balance.

Transactions recorded to the general ledger include balance sheet and income statement transactions. Many general ledger systems are summaries which refer back to sub-ledgers that contain the detailed transactions.


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