A huge amount of money changes hands in shipping-related transactions every day, whether through ship sales and purchases, cargo carriage, tax payments, salaries or through other deals. To ensure that the figures add up, independent Accountants will work with shipping companies in gathering and preparing financial information in a form that provides accurate and useful records, enabling future business decisions to be made. An Accountant will identify and record the company’s revenues and expenditures according to generally accepted accounting principles. After interpreting the results, the accountant will produce a summary showing assets, liabilities and financial performance, which will help managers, investors, tax authorities and other decision makers understand a snapshot of the company financially. Some accountancy firms offer an integrated service, which not only covers tax and corporate finance, but increasingly business analytics, risk management and specialist sector knowledge. Meanwhile, other accountants offer special software tools to benchmark ship running costs, or up-to-the minute advice on topical issues affecting the financial side of the business.