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Question 5

Describe the informational needs of external users.


There are various external users of accounting who need accounting information for decision making, investment planning and to assess the financial position of the business. The various external users are given below.


1. Banks and other financial institutions− Banks provide finance in form of loans and advances to various businesses. Thus, they need information regarding liquidity, creditworthiness, solvency and profitability to advance loans.


2. Creditors− These are those individuals and organisations to whom a business owes money on account of credit purchases of goods and receiving services; hence, the creditors require information about credit worthiness of the business.


3. Investors and potential investors− They invest or plan to invest in the business. Hence, in order to assess the viability and prospectes of their investment, creditors need information about profitability and solvency of the business.


4. Tax authorities− They need information about sales, revenues, profit and taxable income in order to determine the levy various types of tax on the business.


5. Government− It needs information to determine national income, GDP, industrial growth, etc. The accounting information assist the government in the formulation of various policies measures and to address various economic problems like employment, poverty etc.


6. Researcher− Various research institutes like NGOs and other independent research institutions like CRISIL, stock exchanges, etc. undertake various research projects and the accounting information facilitates their research work.


7. Consumer− Every business tries to build up reputation in the eyes of consumers, which can be created by the supply of better quality products and post-sale services at reasonable and affordable prices. Business that has transparent financial records, assists the customers to know the correct cost of production and accordingly assess the degree of reasonability of the price charged by the business for its products and thus helps in repo building of the business.


8. Public− Public is keenly interested to know the proportion of the profit that the business spends on various public welfare schemes; for example, charitable hospitals, funding schools, etc. This information is also revealed by the profit and loss account and balance sheet of the business.

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