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Income is the money received by an individual or business in exchange for providing goods, services, or investments. It can come in various forms such as salary, wages, bonuses, commissions, dividends, or rental income. It serves as a primary source of funds, enabling individuals and businesses to manage expenses, save, and invest for future growth.


The phonetic spelling of the keyword “Income” is: ˈɪnkəm

Key Takeaways

  1. Income refers to the earnings an individual or business receives in exchange for providing their labor, resources, or services.
  2. There are various types of income, including earned income (e.g., wages, salary, tips), unearned income (e.g., investments, interest, dividends), and passive income (e.g., rental properties, royalties).
  3. Income is subject to taxes, which vary depending on factors such as the type of income, geographical location, and the individual’s financial circumstances.


Income is a crucial term in business and finance as it refers to the money generated through various activities, such as sales, investments, and services provided. This financial inflow is vital for the sustenance, growth, and stability of an individual or a business, as it enables them to meet expenses, invest in future ventures, pay off debts or accrue savings. Assessing income is an essential component in evaluating the financial health and success of an enterprise. Moreover, it assists stakeholders such as investors, lenders, and government authorities in making informed decisions about a company’s credibility and potential for growth or profitability. Ultimately, income plays a significant role in determining a business’s financial standing and overall economic contribution.


Income serves as a pivotal concept in the world of finance and business, often signifying the lifeblood of any successful venture or economy. Central to the operational viability and growth potential of any enterprise, income refers to the earnings accrued through various activities, such as the sales of goods or services, interests, dividends, or other investments. The purpose of income stretches beyond merely reflecting the monetary gains of an individual or entity, as it also functions as a key metric to gauge financial health, creditworthiness, and prosperity on both micro and macroeconomic levels. An understanding of income not only helps inform essential decision-making processes but also plays a significant role in shaping strategies for businesses, governments, and individuals alike. For businesses, income is crucial for funding daily operations, repaying loans, expanding operations, and rewarding stakeholders. Moreover, the analysis of income streams can reveal valuable insights, allowing for targeted resource allocation, improved efficiency, and sustainable growth. On a personal level, income acts as the primary determinant of financial stability, dictating lifestyle choices, savings opportunities, and investment decisions. Overall, the role and implications of income within the financial and economic landscape cannot be overstated, as this crucial measure offers a key to unlocking long-term success and stability.


1. Salary from Employment: John is an accountant working for a multinational company. His monthly salary of $5,000 is his primary source of income. This example illustrates the most common form of income for individuals: income earned through their job. 2. Rental Property: Sarah owns an apartment building with 10 units that she rents out to tenants. Each month, she receives a total of $10,000 in rent payments from her tenants. This is an example of income generated from a rental property as a source of passive income for the property owner. 3. Dividend Income from Investments: Michael has a diversified portfolio of stocks and bonds, including shares of a well-established company that pays a regular dividend. In the last quarter, he received $2,000 in dividend income from his shares in that company. This is an example of investment income earned from stocks that pay dividends to shareholders.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is income?
Income refers to the money received by an individual or business over a certain period of time in exchange for labor, services, or investments. It can include salaries, wages, bonuses, interests, dividends, and profits from investments.
What are the main types of income?
The main types of income include earned income (salaries and wages), unearned income (interests and dividends), and passive income (rental income, royalties, and profits from investments).
How is income taxed?
Income is generally subject to taxation according to the laws and regulations of the country and jurisdiction in which it is earned. Taxes may include income tax, social security, and Medicare taxes, which are usually deducted at source by employers. Income from self-employment and investments may also be subject to taxation, requiring individuals to report and pay taxes on these earnings.
What is gross income?
Gross income is the total income earned by an individual or business before any deductions, such as taxes, are made. It includes all sources of income, such as wages, salaries, and investment earnings.
What is net income?
Net income, also known as “take-home pay” or “disposable income,” is the amount of income that is left after all deductions, such as taxes, have been taken out. It is the income that is available for an individual or business to spend, save, or invest.
What is the difference between personal and business income?
Personal income refers to the earnings received by individuals, while business income refers to the earnings received by a business entity. Personal income includes wages, salaries, investments, and other sources of individual earnings. Business income typically refers to revenues generated through sales and investments, minus expenses such as payroll, taxes, and operating costs.
How can I increase my income?
To increase personal income, one can seek a higher-paying job, work more hours, develop additional skills to earn promotions or job opportunities, or invest in income-generating assets. In the case of a business, increasing income can involve expanding product lines, improving marketing efforts, reducing costs, and increasing efficiencies in operations.

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