Within financial statements, names for some items vary from one company to another. (Heck, even the names of the financial statements themselves vary sometimes!) Don't let this confuse you. If you're looking for "revenues," for example, just know that the same thing might also be called "sales." Below is a list of some alternate wording.

Note that the list is by no means comprehensive. It'll just give you an idea of the variation you'll likely run across as you study the balance sheets and income statements of firms such as McDonald's (NYSE:MCD), Citigroup (NYSE:C), Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG), and Merck (NYSE:MRK).

  Accounts Payable        = PayablesAccounts Receivable        = Trade Receivables       = ReceivablesAdditional Paid-in Capital        = Capital in Excess of Stated Value       = Capital Surplus       = Paid-in CapitalBalance Sheet       = Statement of Financial Condition       = Consolidated Balance SheetsCost of Goods Sold        = Costs of Sales       = Cost of Revenue       = Cost of Products Sold       = Costs, Materials, and ProductionEarnings        = Net Income       = Net ProfitIncome Statement        = Earnings Statement       = Statement of Operations       = Profit and Loss Statement       = Consolidated Statement of IncomeInventories          = Merchandise InventoriesEarnings Before Income Taxes        = Income (Loss) Before Income Taxes       = Earnings Before Provision for Income TaxesEarnings Per Share        = Net Income per Share       = Net Income per Common ShareNet Income        = Net Profit       = Net EarningsRevenues        = Sales       = Net SalesShareholder Equity        = Shareholders' Investment       = Stockholders' EquityShort-Term Debt        = Debt Payable Within One Year       = Current Portion of Long-Term Debt       = Notes Payable       = [a combination of some of the above]

You can learn more about how the financial world works in our Investing Basics area and in our Fool's School.

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