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MSN Money Central: A revolution for small investors

This is a fragment Fragment of the article on MSN Money Central.

A revolution for small investors

Soon all companies will report financials in a programming language called XBRL that will allow you and me to slice and dice numbers like never before.

By Michael Brush
A few years from now, don't be surprised if some blogger in his boxer shorts brings down the next Enron.

That may seem far-fetched, but hold off on the laughter.

That's because individual investors in the U.S. will soon move another step closer to a brave new world of democratized financial information that will put powerful analytical tools on their desktops.

On May 14, the Securities and Exchange Commission will announce the next steps for making all companies report financials using a software programming language called XBRL.

XBRL will eventually put a far superior version of Wall Street's high-priced tools in the hands of regular investors for free and maybe even help them uncover the next accounting scandal.

XBRL will bring such a revolution to investment analysis that any Sherlock Holmes who X-rays financials for clues on a company's health needs to learn about it -- and push the SEC to make companies adopt it as soon as possible.

(More on MSN Money Central)


Posted on Wednesday, April 30, 2008 at 06:00AM by Registered CommenterCharlie in | CommentsPost a Comment | References3 References

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