Your account balance is the amount of money you have in one of your financial accounts. For example, your bank account balance refers to the amount of money in your bank accounts. Your account balance can also be the amount of money outstanding on one of your financial accounts. Your credit card balance, for example, refers to the amount of money you owe a credit card company.
With your 401(k), your account balance, also called your accrued benefit, is the amount your 401(k) account is worth on a date that it’s valued. For example, if the value of your account on December 31 is $250,000, that’s your account balance.
You use your account balance to figure how much you must withdraw from your retirement savings plan each year once you start taking required distributions after you turn 70 1/2. Specifically, you divide the account balance at the end of your plan’s fiscal year by your life expectancy to determine the amount you must take from your account during the next fiscal year.