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Net Receivables


Net receivables is a financial term referring to the total money owed to a company by its customers, minus the provision for credit losses. It represents the amount a company anticipates to collect from outstanding debts. It’s a key figure in understanding a company’s financial health, shown on the company’s balance sheet.


The phonetics for the keyword ‘Net Receivables’ is: nɛt rɪˈsi:vəbəlz

Key Takeaways

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  1. Net Receivables represent a company’s total outstanding invoices (i.e., amounts owed by customers) less provisions for doubtful accounts. Provisions for doubtful accounts are established by the company as an allowance for potential non-payment or bad debts. Therefore, net receivables provide a more accurate picture of the actual amount expected to be received by the company.
  2. Net Receivables are a key component of a company’s working capital and cash flow management. They are classified as current assets, hence, directly influence the company’s ability to fund its day-to-day operations. A very high level of receivables may signify that a company is not collecting payments efficiently, which can impact the company’s liquidity position.
  3. Analyzing the trend in net receivables over time can provide useful insights into a company’s credit management practices and customer payment behavior. A rising trend in net receivables relative to sales may indicate that the company is giving more credit to its customers or its collection process is not efficient, while a declining trend may point to improved collection efforts or decrease in credit sales.



Net receivables is an essential business/finance term as it refers to the total money owed to a company by its customers after deducting the provision for doubtful debts. It represents the actual amount of accounts receivable that the business can expect to collect, thus providing a more accurate picture of the company’s expected income. This term is significant in evaluating the company’s liquidity, efficiency, and financial health. A high amount of net receivables implies that a business has a robust credit sales system, but it should also maintain efficient collection processes to convert these receivables into cash promptly. Therefore, monitoring net receivables helps in managing cash flows and making informed financial decisions.


Net receivables, a critical component in financial management, serve the purpose of evaluating the financial health of a company. It provides vital insights into the amount of money owed to a business by its debtors, after accounting for doubtful debts or provisions for bad debts. This parameter is instrumental in measuring the efficiency of the company’s credit management practices as it directly correlates to the revenue that would eventually be realized by the business.Net receivables are used by organizations, investors, and financial analysts for multiple purposes. Companies use net receivables to streamline their accounts and to devise efficient strategies for collecting debts. Lenders and investors analyze this figure to assess the company’s liquidity position and estimate the risk associated with their investments. A higher net receivables amount indicates a robust collection process and reflects positively on the company’s potential cash flow. Furthermore, the ratio of net receivables to total sales is a popular metric used to evaluate the business’s credit policies.


1. A Retail Store: Let’s say that a clothing retail store has total receivables of $100,000 from its customers who have bought clothes on credit. However, due to non-payments and adjustments, the business expects that it might not be able to collect $10,000 from these customers. So, its net receivables would be $90,000 ($100,000 – $10,000).2. A Manufacturing Company: ABC Manufacturing sells machinery to various businesses on a credit basis. At the end of the fiscal year, the total accounts receivable amounts to $200,000. After taking into account possible defaults and allowances for doubtful debts estimated at $15,000, the net receivables will be calculated as $185,000 ($200,000 – $15,000).3. A Marketing Agency: A marketing agency has various clients that have not paid previous invoices, giving the agency a total accounts receivable of $50,000. However, they think that approximately $5,000 worth of this debt is unlikely to be collected due to client bankruptcy. Therefore, the Net Receivables of this agency would be $45,000 ($50,000 – $5,000).

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What are Net Receivables?

Net Receivables are the total amount of money owed to a company by its customers after taking into account allowance for doubtful accounts and sales returns. It represents the actual money that the company expects to receive from its debtors.

How are Net Receivables calculated?

Net Receivables are calculated by subtracting the allowance for doubtful accounts and sales returns from Accounts Receivables. The formula is: Net Receivables = Total Receivables – Allowance for Doubtful Accounts – Sales Returns.

What role do Net Receivables play in a company’s financial health?

Net Receivables reflect the actual money a company is likely to receive. If the receivables are too high, it indicates that the company might be facing problems with its cash flow as it’s unable to collect debts from customers. On the contrary, low net receivables may suggest efficient collection practices.

What are Allowance for Doubtful Accounts?

Allowance for Doubtful Accounts is a contra asset account that estimates the proportion of accounts receivables which the company considers uncollectible or doubtful.

What is the difference between Gross Receivables and Net Receivables?

Gross Receivables is the total amount of money owed to a company by its customers. On the other hand, Net Receivables is the amount the company expects to be paid after adjusting for potential losses from doubtful accounts and sales returns.

What is aging of receivables and how is it related to Net Receivables?

Aging of receivables is the process of categorizing receivables based on how long they have been outstanding. It helps in evaluating the credit quality of receivables. If older accounts are more, the allowance for doubtful accounts will increase, and hence Net Receivables will decrease.

How is the accounts receivable turnover ratio calculated and what does it indicate?

The Accounts Receivable Turnover Ratio is calculated by dividing net credit sales by average accounts receivable. It indicates how efficiently a company is managing its receivables and collecting cash from its customers. A high ratio suggests efficient credit and collection process.

Related Finance Terms

  • Accounts Receivable: It refers to the outstanding invoices a company has or the money the company is owed from its clients.
  • Bad Debt Expense: It’s the amount that a company writes off as an expense because it realizes that these receivables will not be collected.
  • Allowance for Doubtful Accounts: It is a contra-asset account that netted off against the total receivables reported on the balance sheet to reflect only the amounts expected to be paid.
  • Cash Flow: The total amount of money being transferred into and out of a business, which affects the business’s liquidity.
  • Debt Collection: The process of pursuing payments of debts owed by individuals or businesses. An organization that specializes in debt collection is known as a collection agency or debt collector.

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