An asset is something that is expected to yield a benefit in a future period. If an asset is expected to be entirely consumed within the current period, then it is instead charged to expense in the current period. In a business, assets are aggregated into different line items on the balance sheet.

 

Examples of assets that are found on the balance sheet are as follows (presented in alpabetical order):

  • Bond investments
  • Building fixed assets
  • Cash
  • Certificate of deposit investments
  • Commercial paper investments
  • Computer equipment fixed assets
  • Computer software fixed assets
  • Finished goods inventors
  • Furniture and fixture fixed assets
  • Land fixed assets
  • Leasehold improvement fixed assets
  • Loans receivable from employees
  • Machinery fixed assets
  • Money market investments
  • Non-trade receivables
  • Notes receivable
  • Office equipment fixed assets
  • Raw materials inventory
  • Stock in other companies
  • Trade receivables
  • Vehicles fixed assets
  • Warrants to purchase shares
  • Work-in-process inventory

 

Some fixed assets are classified as intangible, and are recorded on the balance sheet within a separate line item. These items are either purchased or obtained as part of an acquisition. Examples of assets (these intangible assets) are:

  • Brand names
  • Broadcast licenses
  • Copyrights
  • Domain names
  • Easements
  • Film libraries
  • Franchise agreements
  • Goodwill
  • Landing rights
  • Licenses
  • Mineral rights
  • Patents
  • Permits
  • Royalty agreements
  • Supplier contracts
  • Trademarks

 

Some assets are not found on the balance sheet, typically because they are internally-generated assets or valuable processes that the accounting standards do not allow an organization to recognize as assets. Examples of these non-recognized assets are:

  • Internal quality control processes
  • Internal research and development processes
  • Staff training investments
  • The value of a brand image