« An XBRL-based Report is a Directed Acyclic Graph | Main | Organizing Disclosures »

Breaking Down XBRL-based Financial Reports

I am analyzing the last 10-K of each of 5,734 public companies that submitted financial reports to the SEC as of March 31, 2018.  This number of filings "5,734" differs from the two sets of that I measured in my quarterly analysis of public company reports.

My analysis of the fundamental accounting concept relations is for the LAST REPORT FILED and that last report could be a 10-K or a 10-Q. That total is 5,856.  The reason I use the last report filed is because fundamental accounting concept relations could have been fixed since the companies last 10-K. (Here is a comparison of fundamental accounting concept relations measurements for the past three years.)

My analysis of the reporting checklist and disclosure mechanics is for the LAST 10-K reported, but when I ran that analysis XBRL Cloud was inadvertenly including 272 funds and trusts in that list which I did not want to work with, so that total is 6,006. (Here is a summary of the reporting checklist and disclosure mechanics measurements which I just started in March 2018.)

But for the analysis I am doing now I am working with the 5,734 10-Ks of public companies as of March 31, 2018.

Here is some information about that set of 5,734 XBRL-based financial reports.

  • There are 7,948,552 facts reported by those companies in those 5,734 reports.
  • The average report contained about 1,386 facts.
  • The report with the most number of facts reported 29,247 facts.
  • The report with the least number of facts reported 14 facts.
  • The reports contained 447,715 networks which are used to organize those facts into sets.
  • The report with the must number of networks provided 310 networks.
  • The report with the least number of networks provided 1 network.
  • The reports contained 5,553,445 presentation relationships (which I call the model structure) between the Networks, Tables, Axis, Members, LineItems, Abstracts, and Concepts that were used to represent the information in the reports.
    • 5,553,245 of those relations were as expected
    • 200 of those relations were inconsistent with expectation meaning that there was some sort of mistake, this is down from prior year measurements.

In those 5,734 10-K financial reports there were 311,000 text blocks reported using concepts from the US GAAP XBRL Taxonomy.  There were about 964 different text blocks that fell into three SEC/FASB categories:

  • Level 1 Note text blocks that were used to represent entire notes.
  • Level 2 Policy text blocks that were used to represent individual accounting policies.
  • Level 3 Disclosure text blocks that were used to represent individual disclosures.

I am not analysing the Level 4 Disclosure Detail here. I compare Level 4 Disclosure Detail and Level 3 Disclosure Text Blocks here.

What I am doing here is to compare how public companies use specific text blocks.  Here is information about those text blocks:

What is very useful about these comparisons is that you can see how different public companies use these text blocks. I did a specific analysis of the Level 3 Disclosure text block related to the disclosure of the components of property, plant, and equipment.  See the full comparison here. Here are some individual observations:

  1. Most public companies use the text block "us-gaap:PropertyPlantAndEquipmentTextBlock" to represent the components of PPE which tends to look like this.
  2. A good chunk of public companies include the estimated useful lives of each category of PPE in that text block, which tends to look like this.
  3. A small minority use that text block to disclose ONLY the estimated useful lives of PPE categories.
  4. A small minority include depreciation expense AND the breakdown of PPE components.
  5. A minority include PPE components in their PPE policy text block.

Clearly all of these four cannot be considered correct.  My personal view is that #1 is correct.  #2 should be broken down into TWO separate disclosures in my view; one for the roll up of PPE components and another for the estimated useful lives.  #3 clearly cannot be considered correct, it does not match what most public companies do and it does not match the documentation of the text block.  #5 likewise is clearly not correct, PPE components go into the level 3 disclosure text block not the policy.

What causes these sort of issues is a "presentation" orientation when thinking about how to represent these disclosures.  If a "representation" of information orientation were taken, how things should be represented becomes more clear.

What do you think?  More analysis coming, so stay tuned.

Posted on Friday, May 11, 2018 at 08:58AM by Registered CommenterCharlie in | CommentsPost a Comment

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.