What is P&L statement and what to pay attention to?

Jul 14, 2023

A profit and loss (P&L) statement is a financial report that shows a company's revenue, expenses, and net income over a specific period. It is also known as an income statement or statement of operations. A P&L statement is essential for businesses of all sizes, as it provides valuable insights into their financial performance.

What to Pay Attention to in a P&L Statement


Revenue is the money a company earns from its operations. It is the first item on a P&L statement and is crucial to understanding a company's financial performance. Revenue can come from the sale of goods or services, and it is important to track revenue over time to identify trends and changes in a company's business.

revenue tracking


Expenses are the costs associated with running a business. They can include salaries, rent, utilities, and other operating costs. It is important to track expenses carefully to ensure that they are not exceeding revenue. If expenses are too high, it can indicate that a company is not operating efficiently.


Gross Profit

Gross profit is the revenue a company earns minus the cost of goods sold (COGS). COGS includes the direct costs associated with producing goods or services, such as materials, labor, and manufacturing overhead. Gross profit is a key metric for businesses, as it shows how much money they are making before accounting for other expenses.

gross profit

Net Income

Net income is the bottom line of a P&L statement. It is the amount of money a company has left over after all expenses have been deducted from revenue. Net income is a critical metric for businesses, as it shows whether they are profitable or not. A positive net income indicates that a company is making money, while a negative net income indicates that it is losing money.

net income


One of the most valuable aspects of a P&L statement is the ability to identify trends over time. By tracking revenue, expenses, gross profit, and net income, businesses can gain insights into their financial performance and make informed decisions about their operations. For example, if revenue is increasing while expenses remain constant, a company may want to invest in growth opportunities. On the other hand, if expenses are increasing while revenue remains the same, a company may need to cut costs to improve profitability.



Finally, it is essential to ensure the accuracy of a P&L statement. Mistakes in calculations or reporting can lead to incorrect conclusions about a company's financial performance. It is important to review the statement carefully and double-check all figures before making any decisions based on the data.



A P&L statement is a critical tool for businesses to track their financial performance. By paying attention to revenue, expenses, gross profit, net income, trends, and accuracy, companies can gain valuable insights into their operations and make informed decisions about their future.