Owners Capital

Owners Capital Definition

Owners Capital is also referred to as Shareholders Equity. It is the money business owners (if it is a sole proprietorship or partnership) or shareholders (if it is a corporation) have invested in their businesses. In other words, it represents the portion of the total assets which have been funded by the owners/ shareholders money.

Owners Capital Formula

It can be calculated as follows:

Owners Capital Formula = Total Assets – Total Liabilities
Owners Capital

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For eg:
Source: Owners Capital (wallstreetmojo.com)

For example, XYZ Inc. has total assetsTotal AssetsTotal Assets is the sum of a company's current and noncurrent assets. Total assets also equals to the sum of total liabilities and total shareholder funds. Total Assets = Liabilities + Shareholder Equityread more of $50m and total liabilities of $30m as at 31st December 2018. Then Owners Capital is $20m (Assets of $50m fewer Liabilities of $30m) as at 31st December 2018. It can be interpreted from above that assets of $20m are funded by the Owners/ Shareholders of the business. Remaining $30m have been funded through externally sourced funds (i.e., loans from banks, issuance of bonds, etc.)

Components of Owners Capital

#1 – Common Stock

Common Stock is the amount of capital contributed by the common shareholders of the company. It is shown at the par value in the Balance Sheet.

#2 – Additional Paid-In Capital

Additional Paid-In Capital refers to the amount over and above the stated par value of the stock that has been paid by the shareholders to acquire the company shares.

Additional Paid-In Capital = (Issue Price- Par Value) x Number of Shares Issued.

Let’s assume that as of 31st December 2018, XYZ Company issued the total number of common shares of 10,000,000 having a par value of $1 per share. Further, assume that common shareholders paid $10 each to acquire all the shares of the company. In this case, additional paid-in capital would be reported at $90m (($10-$1) x 10,000,000)) under shareholders equity in the Balance Sheet.

#3 – Retained Earnings

Retained EarningsRetained EarningsRetained Earnings are defined as the cumulative earnings earned by the company till the date after adjusting for the distribution of the dividend or the other distributions to the investors of the company. It is shown as the part of owner’s equity in the liability side of the balance sheet of the company.read more is the portion of net income available for common shareholders that have not been distributed as dividends. These are retained by the company for future investments and growth. Considering that the amount retained by the company belongs to its common shareholders, this is shown under shareholders’ equity in the balance sheet. It increases when the company makes profits and decreases when a company makes losses.

For example, if the company earned net income (after paying preferred dividends) of $5m for the financial year ending 2018 and distributed $2m as dividends to its common shareholders. This means that the company’s management has decided to retain $3m in the company for its future growth and investments.

#4 – Accumulated Other Comprehensive Income/ (loss)

These are some income/expenses that are not reflected under the income statement. It is so because they are not earned incurred by the company but affect Shareholder’s equity Account during the period.

Here are some examples of items. Other Comprehensive IncomeOther Comprehensive IncomeOther comprehensive income refers to income, expenses, revenue, or loss not being realized while preparing the company's financial statements during an accounting period. Thus, it is excluded and shown after the net income.read more includes unrealized gains or lossesUnrealized Gains Or LossesUnrealized Gains or Losses refer to the increase or decrease respectively in the paper value of the company's different assets, even when these assets are not yet sold. Once the assets are sold, the company realizes the gains or losses resulting from such disposal.read more on available for sale securities, actuarial gains or losses on defined benefit plans, foreign currency adjustments.

#5 – Treasury Stock

Treasury stockTreasury StockTreasury Stock is a stock repurchased by the issuance Company from its current shareholders that remains non-retired. Moreover, it is not considered while calculating the Company’s Earnings Per Share or dividends. read more is the stock that has been reacquired by the company from the shareholders and thus reduces the shareholder’s equity. It is shown as a negative number in the Balance Sheet. There can be two methods for accounting treasury stock, i.e., Cost and Par Value Method.

Examples of Owner’s Capital Calculation

Below are the examples.

Example #1

Say ABC Ltd. has total assets of $100,000 and total liabilities of $40,000. Calculate the Owner’s Capital.

Calculation of the Owner’s Capital

Owner's Capital Example 1.1
  • =$100000-$40000
  • =$60000

Example #2

Let’s see a practical application. Tom runs a grocery store. He started it on 1st Jan’2019 with his savings of $40,000 and a loan that he took from his uncle for $20,000. He purchased a laptop for $1,000; furniture for $10,000; stock for $45,000 and balance $4,000 was kept in bank for day to day expenses. At the end of the year, i.e., 21st Dec’2019, his balance sheet stood at follows:

LiabilitiesAmount ($)AssetsAmount ($)
Owner’s Capital50,000Furniture9,000

How these figures actually got changed? Let’s understand; Tom must have sold his stock at prices higher than the purchase price. He must have incurred some expenses like electricity, insurance, accounts, finance charges, etc.. Also, he might have made some connections, so he was able to purchase some stock on credit. All these events led to cash inflow as well as cash outflow. The profit he actually made after all these are now added to the Owner’s Capital.

Now if we calculate Owner’s Capital by using Assets – Liabilities formula then we get:

Owner's Capital Example 1
  • =$71200 – $21200
  • =$50000

Change in Owner’s Capital

Advantages and Disadvantages of Owner’s Capital

Given below are some of the advantages and disadvantages of the owner’s capital.

Advantages of the Owner’s Capital

  • #1 – No burden of Repayment: Unlike debt capital, there is no burden of repayment in the case of the owner’s capital. It is thereby considered a permanent source of funds. This helps management to focus on its core objectives and flourish the business.
  • #2 – No Interference: When a business has Debt as a major source of funds, the chances of interference by lenders are high. This can become a hindrance to the growth of a business. While in the case of the owner’s capital, management has sole discretion in deciding whatever is good for the business.
  • #3 – No Impact of Interest Rate: If a company is highly dependent on variable rate debt capital, then an increase in interest rate can significantly impact its cash flowsCash FlowsCash Flow is the amount of cash or cash equivalent generated & consumed by a Company over a given period. It proves to be a prerequisite for analyzing the business’s strength, profitability, & scope for betterment. read more, while in the case of the owner’s capital, there is no impact of changes in interest rate.
  • #4 – Easy Accessibility to Debt Capital When the company has enough owner’s capital, then it is always easy to get additional debt capital as it shows that the company is strong and working independently.



Owners Capital is a vital part of any business. It is the base upon which the whole company stands and grows. Business can be carried out with only the owner’s capital or with debt or a mix of equity and debt. An optimal mix of shareholders’ equity and debt is considered as the best option to get leverage benefits. However, the owner’s capital is highly appreciated when the cost of debt is higher than the return business is providing.

Having a balanced owner’s capital shows that the company is secured and does not only rely on outsiders for carrying its business.

This article has been a guide to Owners Capital and its definition. Here we discuss the formula to calculate the owner’s capital along with its components, examples, advantages, and disadvantages. You can learn more about finance from following articles –

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