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Usually a period of twelve months for which a company regularly creates financial statements and checks inventories.

The fiscal year may correspond exactly to the calendar year, but this is not obligatory.

Under certain circumstances a fiscal year may be less than twelve months (shortened fiscal year).


A fiscal year is divided into posting periods . Each posting period is defined by a start and a finish date. Before you can post documents, you must define posting periods, which in turn define the fiscal year.

In addition to the posting periods, you can also define special periods for year-end closing.

In General Ledger Accounting , a fiscal year can have a maximum of twelve posting periods and four special periods. You can define up to 366 posting periods in the Special Purpose Ledger .


In order to assign business transactions to different time periods, you must define a fiscal year with posting periods. Defining the fiscal year is obligatory .

You define your fiscal year as fiscal year variants which you then assign to your company code. One fiscal year variant can be used by several company codes.

You have the following options for defining fiscal year variants:

  • Fiscal year same as calendar year

  • Fiscal year differs from calendar year (non-calendar fiscal year). The posting periods can also be different to the calendar months.

You define your fiscal year variants in Customizing for Financial Accounting as follows:   Financial Accounting Global Settings   Fiscal Year   Maintain Fiscal Year Variant (Maintain Shortened Fiscal Year)  


When you enter a posting, the system automatically determines the posting period. For more information, see Determining Posting Periods During Posting

In the general ledger, the system saves the transaction figures for all accounts for each posting period and each special period separately according to debits and credits. In the Special Purpose Ledger component (FI-SL), you can save the transaction figures as a balance.