4 Steps to Fix QuickBooks Retained Earnings Incorrect


The retained earnings in QuickBooks software is an equity account that helps you to assist the year-end balance of your business.  The previous year’s net income is automatically added to the current year’s balance sheet as retained earnings. Retained earnings are the previous years earnings that shown on the previous year’s balance sheet. You can also say that it is a type of profit that the company reinvents in itself by taking it to the next year. 

Here, you get to know whether the statement “QuickBooks Retained Earnings incorrect” is correct or not. If the statement is correct then check it by viewing a detailed report or calculating your profit or loss statement.

What is the formula to calculate the retained earnings?

Formula is-

Consummation RE = Beginning RE + Net Income (Profit or Loss statement) 

  • Where,Dividends 
  • RE: Retained Earnings 
  • Starting RE: Accumulated surplus toward the start of the monetary year. 
  • Total compensation: Balance sum left for the organization in the wake of deducting the costs, for example, the expense of products sold, pay costs, intrigue, charges, devaluation and amortization from the Net Sales of the organization. 
  • Profit: It is the amount that is paid to the investors who are holding each portion of the organization. This amount is paid to them when the budgetary year finishes.

Using this formula, you can easily correct your QuickBooks retained earnings and won’t get the error message “QuickBooks Retained Earnings incorrect”.

What are the steps to check transactions that are created in the retained earnings account?

The report shows the transactions affecting the retained earning account. You can run a quick report to review the transactions that are created on the retained earnings account.

For this, the steps are as follows:- 

  • Open the QuickBooks software
  • Then click on the Gear icon that is at the top right side of the screen
  • Now, choose the option Chart of Accounts
  • Search for the Retained Earnings accounts option then click on it
  • It opens up the window of retained earnings account
  • In this, you have to click on the Action Column
  • Then choose the option Run Report
  • You have to click on the drop-down arrow to choose the Report Period
  • From the list, click on the All Dates option
  • In the end, click on the Run Report button.

When you get the report then check for only transactions. If any of the amount you think is correct then to make it correct by creating a new journal entry.You can also ask your accountant to do this so that it would be correct in the next report. 

How to view the Retained Earnings account details in QuickBooks Desktop?

In QuickBooks, there is an electronics swap that is used to move money to the retained earnings. This swap is not going to show on any report until there is any other entry then into the account of retained earnings. You can check the making up of retained earnings into your QuickBooks account. For that, you have to run the profit and loss record and also view details for the net income account. Below, you get to know how you can view details of your attendance and also how to run the profit and loss report into your QuickBooks account.

1. Check the details of Retained Earnings account

The account of retained earnings provides you the information about the income and expenses of your company from all the previous years. At the start of a new fiscal year, QuickBooks automatically adds the net income from your previous fiscal year report to your current balance sheet. It adds this amount in the category of retained earnings. You are not able to check the details of retained earnings from your balance sheet. 

The QuickBooks automatically and electronically swaps funds from the net income and loss into the account. This transaction won’t be recorded into your books of accounts. If you have to check about the error “QuickBooks retained earnings incorrect” then you have to verify it by running the previous year’s profit and loss report.

2. To view the Profit and Loss detail report

Here are the steps that you have to follow to run and view the profit and loss detail report.

The steps are as follows:-

  • In QuickBooks account, click on the Reports menu option
  • Then search for the Profit and Loss report option and then click on it to open it
  • From the option of Report Period, click on the arrow to get the drop down list
  • Select option All Dates from the drop-down list 
  • Then click on the Run Report to run the Profit and Loss report
  • You have to select the Net Income amount that helps you to open the Profit and Loss Detail report for All the Dates as selected by you.

After running the profit and loss report, it shows all the transactions that make the net profit or loss. so it is  automatically switched to the retained earnings account into your current year’s balance sheet.

3. View the profit and loss report by year

In this, you can check the profit and loss report according to the year to track your retained earnings over the time in an easy manner.

There are the steps that help you to do so:-

  • Click on the Reports menu option
  • Search for the Profit and Loss report and then click on it
  • In the window of Profit and Loss report, choose option Customize
  • Then in the customise panel, click on the Rows/Columns item to open this action
  • Click on the Columns drop-down arrow
  • From the Columns drop-down list, select Years option
  • After this, click on the Run Report.

As you select a column option here, it displays the view of the amounts year by year. With this, you can easily check the amount that is transferred from profit and loss account to retained earnings account.

4. Review the retained earning account quick report

View the account quick report, if there is a difference between the  current retained earnings are the profit and loss report. The transaction of retained earnings only affects the balance sheet accounts as it entered against the account.

For quick report the steps are as follows:-

  • In QuickBooks, click on the Gear icon that is the settings button
  • Then choose the option Chart of Accounts
  • Search for the Retained Earnings account
  • Select Run Report from the Action column drop-down menu
  • Then click on All Dates option from the report period drop-down menu
  • When your settings are all set then click on the Run Report.

This report shows you the user-created transactions that are affecting the figure of the Retained Earnings account.


  1. How did retained earnings changes in QuickBooks to check for QuickBooks retained earnings incorrect or not?

    When there is the change in the amount of the Net profit or Net loss then there is the change in their total amount. This affects the retained earnings amount in QuickBooks balance sheet.

  2. In what case is the journal entry required for retained earnings to fix QuickBooks retained earnings incorrect?

    The balance in the retained earnings account is credited. In case you have to increase this amount then you have to make the credit journal entry. If you make the debit entry then it decreases the amount in retained earnings.

  3. How is the journal entry created for increasing retained earnings amount after resolving the problem “QuickBooks Retained earnings incorrect”?

    1. In QuickBooks, click on the + icon that is for creating new entry
    2. Then choose the option Journal Entry
    3. Select the Date to match the opening balance
    4. Choose the Retained Earnings from the first line of Account Column
    5. You have to enter the amount in the Credits column
    6. In the second line mention the account you are using for creating the balance
    7. Enter the amount in the Debits column
    8. Click on the button Save and Close when you are done.

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