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What is a Contingent Liability?

Course video 37 of 56

In the last two modules we have been exploring assets and their impact on both the balance sheet and income statement. In this module we will turn to discussing the other two components of the balance sheet: liabilities and owners equity.As firms operate, they make promise to deliver value to other entities. Accountants call these promises liabilities. You have already seen some liabilities as we discussed assets - after all, you get many assets by promising to give up future value. We will review those liabilities here as well as introducing a few new ones. Firms also have owners. Those owners sometimes directly provide capital and other times let managers retain capital generated by firm operations. Combined, those two sources of capital represent owners equity. We will discuss interaction with owners and how they impact our firms economic situation. We will also discuss how the accounting statements reflect these interactions.

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