You must be reading old manuals.
Closing the books just zeros out the Income and Expense accounts, rolling
them up into Equity. The reports can do this on their own, so really the
only benefit is that your Income and Expense accounts will return to $0
instead of showing you a grand total for the life of your use of the
On Thu, February 22, 2018 2:11 pm, Stan Brown wrote:
> New user here. I understand double-entry accounting pretty well, but I'm
> struggling to adapt that knowledge to GnuCash's take on double-entry
> Why do we specify an accounting period? How is it used in GnuCash?
> I assumed it was related to closing the books, but section 8.9 in the
> help manual says we shouldn't close the books because GnuCash doesn't
> understand that the closing entries it generates are special, so it will
> think income and expenses in the period are all zero.
> (I'm accustomed to close the books monthly, with monthly income
> statement and end-of-month balance sheet -- that's when I would
> reconcile everything, though I understand GnuCash reconciliation is
> driven in a different way. I also want to get an annual income
> statement. I understand that if I don't close the books monthly I can
> still get an income state monthly by specifying dates. But in that case,
> why would I close the books at the end of the year? or ever? Or is there
> some benefit in GnuCash to closing the books that I'm missing?)
> Stan Brown
> Tompkins County, New York, USA
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Derek Atkins 617-623-3745
Computer and Internet Security Consultant
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