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QuickBooks Desktop Reports Basics

Understanding how reports get their data from the company file’s transactions is really important to know how to interpret these reports to make business decisions!


QuickBooks Desktop uses a concept called Source and Targets to apply accounting principles and the data recording process. Understanding source and targets helps you maximize Report Filters so you can create more effective reports and faster advanced finds:

  • Source/Header is the summary information about a transaction. It contains all source data (source account, source name, source memo and source amount, etc…).
  • Targets/Detail provide the detailed information about the transaction and include all target data (target accounts, target names, target memos, target amounts, etc…).
  • When pulling up any saved transaction in QuickBooks such as an invoice or a check, pressing CTRL+ Y on your keyboard pulls up its transaction journal report. The first line on the report shows the source data and the rest of the lines are target data. All transactions have a fixed source data EXCEPT general journal entries, since you can insert a line before the first line on the entry. Doing so makes ALL lines on the general journal entry recognized by QuickBooks as target data.


All The Standard Reports:

Report Categories Description Sample reports
Company and Financial Find out how your company is doing financially. Profit and Loss Standard, Profit and Loss Detail, Balance Sheet Standard, Balance Sheet Detail
Customers and Receivables Find out how much your customers owe and when it is due. A/R Aging Summary, A/R Aging Detail, Open Invoices
Sales Reports Find sales information related to customers, items, sales reps, pending sales, and sales orders. Sales by Customer Summary, Sales by Customer Detail
Jobs, Time and Mileage Find out how well your company is doing at estimating jobs, how much time is spent on each job, and the mileage expenses for each vehicle or job. Job Profitability Summary, Job Profitability Detail, Estimates by Job
Vendors and Payables Find out how much your company owes and how much is overdue. A/P Aging Summary, A/P Aging Detail, Vendor Balance Summary, Vendor Balance Detail, Unpaid Bills Detail
Purchase Reports* Find information about purchases and open purchase orders. Purchases by Vendor Summary, Purchases by Vendor Detail, Open Purchase Orders
Inventory Reports* Find information about inventory value, stock status and pending builds, including a worksheet for checking your physical inventory. Inventory Valuation Summary, Inventory Valuation Detail
Employees and Payroll Find information about your employees, payroll, and payroll-related expenses. Payroll Summary, Payroll Item Detail, Workers Comp Summary
Banking Reports Find information about your banking transactions. Deposit Detail, Check Detail, Missing Checks, Reconciliation Discrepancy, Previous Reconciliation
Accountant and Taxes Find information related to accounting activities and income tax preparation. Trial Balance, General Ledger, Audit Trail Report
List Find lists of useful information about your company. Account Listing, Price Listing, Customer Phone List, Vendor Phone List, Terms Listing



Hector Garcia

Hector Garcia

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