Financial accounting attempts to establish the value of a particular organisation at a specific point in time, and its earnings over a specified period of time. The reports on which financial accounting focus are the three reports which go to make up a business's annual report. They are the balance sheet, the profit and loss statement and the cash flow statement.
Whilst used within the organisation, the primary purpose of financial accounting is to accurately and concisely communicate financial information to third parties such as banks, investors and the tax department. The focus of financial accounting is generally more long term and attempts to capture the status and performance of an organisation over an extended period of time - usually the financial year. They are generally externally focussed and may accompany the organisation's annual report which will include other, non-financial information.