account -- (1) an on-going business relationship in which a depository institution accepts, holds, invests, processes or disburses funds owned by a customer according to the customer's wishes within a framework of preestablished rules and procedures. (2) any continuing business relationship between two parties in which funds or debt is held and processed to compensate the parties for transactions between them.
Generally a contractual partnership between a vendor and a purchaser that specifies payment at a future date. The contract may be personal or commercial; accordingly, the terms charge account and open account are employed.
Also denotes the past record of transactions under the contract, as given from time to time in the statement of account.
In banking, account means a deposit made in the name of a person, against which withdrawals may be made. An account officer is entrusted with administrative duties. Some banking account types are current, demand, time, corporate custodial, joint and trustee.
In bookkeeping, account is the range of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenditure as shown in the pages of the ledger. Here credit and debit entries (such as accounts receivable and personnel salaries) are made as they occur in order to set down changes in value. The scheme of recording, certifying and entering this information is called accounting. Accounting practitioners are termed accountants.
In investment banking, account refers to the financial and contractual relationship among parties to an underwriting agency, or the position of securities acquired and sold.
In transactions of securities, account is the partnership between a broker firm and its client under which the firm or an authorized representative performs the role of agent in buying and disposing of securities and looks after administrative affairs.
Author: Mark McCracken is a corporate trainer and author living in Higashi Osaka, Japan. He is the author of thousands of online articles as well as the Business English textbook, "25 Business Skills in English".