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A Visual Guide to Understanding Your Financial Statement

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In the startup era, it’s easier than ever to launch a new business.

With barriers to entry for new ventures at historic lows, it’s now extremely common to see aspiring entrepreneurs from all walks of life – including many without any type of formal business training.

Financial Statement Basics

Accounting may not be a glorified part of the modern hustle, but today’s infographic from The Business Backer shows why understanding and interpreting financial statements is important for any founder.

Whether you have the next big idea or find yourself grinding away at a side hustle, understanding the basics of business accounting will help you prepare for the next step of entrepreneurial success.

A Visual Guide to Understanding Your Financial Statement

A financial statement has three main parts: the balance sheet, the income statement, and the cash flow statement.

It’s worth noting that 82% of small businesses fail because they experience cash flow problems, so the latter statement is of particular importance.

What They Do

Here are the basics on each type of statement, and why they are important:

1. Balance Sheet
The balance sheet presents a company’s financial position at the end of a specified date. It provides a snapshot of a company’s assets, liabilities, and shareholders’ equity. This statement essentially shows what a company owns and owes.

2. Income Statement
An income statement is a report that shows how much revenue a company earned over a specific time period. This is perhaps the most intuitive financial statement, as it ultimately shows the company’s profitability – a metric that even the most accounting-allergic business owner would watch quite closely!

3. Cash Flow Statement
A cash flow statement reports the company’s inflows and outflows of cash during a period of time. A company can be profitable, but still be experiencing cash flow difficulties. If not enough money is coming in the door, or if there is a significant lead time to receive revenue, then it’s possible for a company to not meet its short-term liabilities.

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Personal Finance

Mapped: The Income a Family Needs to Live Comfortably in Every U.S. State

Families in expensive states require over $270,000 annually to live comfortably.

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A map showing the income that two working adults with two children need to live comfortably in each U.S. state.

The Income a Family Needs to Live Comfortably in Every U.S. State

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

Families in the top five most expensive U.S. states require an annual income exceeding $270,000 to live comfortably.

This visualization illustrates the income necessary for two working adults with two children to maintain a comfortable lifestyle in each state.

“Comfortable” is defined as the income needed to cover a 50/30/20 budget, with 50% allocated to necessities like housing and utilities, 30% to discretionary spending, and 20% to savings or investments.

The calculations for family income needed in each state were done by SmartAsset, using the cost of necessities sourced from the MIT Living Wage Calculator, last updated on Feb. 14, 2024.

Massachusetts Tops the List

Massachusetts is the most expensive state to live comfortably in, requiring a total family income of about $301,184. Hawaii ($294,611) comes in second, followed by Connecticut ($279,885).

Housing is one main reason Massachusetts is an expensive state to live in, particularly in the Boston area. In addition, the state also has a high cost of living, including expenses such as healthcare and utilities.

RankStateIncome for 2 working adults raising 2 children
1Massachusetts$301,184
2Hawaii$294,611
3Connecticut$279,885
4New York$278,970
5California$276,723
6Colorado$264,992
7Washington$257,421
8Oregon$257,338
9New Jersey$251,181
10Rhode Island$249,267
11Vermont$248,352
12Minnesota$244,774
13New Hampshire$244,109
14Alaska$242,611
15Maryland$239,450
16Nevada$237,286
17Virginia$235,206
18Illinois$231,962
19Arizona$230,630
20Pennsylvania$230,464
21Maine$229,549
22Delaware$228,966
23Wisconsin$225,056
24Utah$218,483
25Michigan$214,490
26Nebraska$213,075
27Georgia$212,826
28Montana$211,411
28Iowa$211,411
30Idaho$211,245
31North Carolina$209,331
31Ohio$209,331
33Florida$209,082
34Indiana$206,003
35New Mexico$203,923
36Wyoming$203,424
37Missouri$202,259
38North Dakota$202,176
39Texas$201,344
40South Carolina$200,762
41Kansas$196,768
42Tennessee$195,770
43Oklahoma$194,106
44Alabama$193,606
45South Dakota$192,608
46Kentucky$190,112
47Louisiana$189,613
48West Virginia$189,363
49Arkansas$180,794
50Mississippi$177,798

Meanwhile, Mississippi is the least expensive state for a family to live comfortably, requiring $177,798 per year. Arkansas ($180,794) comes in second, followed by West Virginia ($189,363). In common, all these states share low prices of housing.

Learn More About Cost of Living From Visual Capitalist

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out this graphic, which ranks the median down payment for a house by U.S. state.

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Voronoi, the app by Visual Capitalist. Where data tells the story. Download on App Store or Google Play

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