November/December 2018

Regulatory and Legislative News


XBRL US Members

Regulatory and Legislative News
SEC Publishes List of Rules to be Reviewed Including XBRL Requirement Rules

On November 27, 2018, the SEC published in the Federal Register, a “List of Rules to Be Reviewed Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act”. Included in the list of rules to be reviewed are those requiring the use of XBRL for public companies, mutual funds and credit rating agencies. Comments are due by December 27, 2018.

Read the SEC announcement:

SEC Posts Draft EDGAR Manual, Effective December 17, 2018

The SEC posted a draft EDGAR manual with changes, if approved, scheduled to take effect on December 17, 2018.

Read the announcement and access the draft manual:

SEC Staff Finds IFRS Filings Have Higher Custom Tag Rates Than US GAAP Filings

On November 20, 2018, SEC Staff in the SEC Division of Economic Risk and Analysis (DERA) published an analysis of XBRL submissions by IFRS filers. The analysis showed that IFRS filers had a custom tag rate of 16% in 2017. By comparison, U.S. GAAP filers had a custom tag rate of 9% in 2017. Or as another comparison, in the first year of full compliance by all U.S. GAAP filers, U.S. GAAP filers had a custom tag rate of 11% in 2011.

Read the release and access the analysis:

SEC Proposes Rule on Variable Annuity Referencing Inline XBRL

The Securities and Exchange Commission published a rule proposal October 31, 2018, on “Updated Disclosure Requirements and Summary Prospectus for Variable Annuity and Variable Life Insurance Contracts” that would require the use of Inline XBRL, among other revisions to disclosure requirements. Comments are due by February 19, 2019.

Read the proposal:

SEC Commissioner Kara Stein Speech on “Improving Information for Investors in the Digital Age”

SEC Commissioner Kara Stein gave an address to the Council of Institutional Investors on October 23, 2018, named “Improving Information for Investors in the Digital Age”, during which the Commissioner noted,

The Commission should lead by helping to create standards for disclosure, using structured data and taxonomies, where applicable. Facilitating the establishment of standards resolves uncertainty and reduces the cost of information.”

Read the full speech:

SEC Launches Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology (FinHub)

On October 18, the SEC announced the launch of the Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology (FinHub). The FinHub will serve as a resource for public engagement on the SEC’s FinTech-related issues and initiatives, such as distributed ledger technology (including digital assets), automated investment advice, digital marketplace financing, and artificial intelligence/machine learning.

Read the announcement:

IFRS Foundation Proposes Updates to IFRS Taxonomy 2018

The Proposed Update, which was published on October 17, 2018, includes common reporting practice for disclosure requirements in IFRS 13, such as: 1) sensitivity of fair value measurement to changes in unobservable inputs; and 2) quantitative information about significant unobservable inputs used in fair value measurement. The public comment period ended on November 19, 2018.

Read the announcement:

Securities and Exchange Commission Updates Interactive Data Test Suite

On October 4, 2018, the SEC made updates to the interactive data test suite. The purpose of the public test suite is to assist filers using software to validate Interactive Data prior to its submission to EDGAR. The test suite consists of many small Interactive Data instances, schemas, and linkbases that are categorized as to whether they violate a validation check, and if so, what validation check they violate and whether that would result in a warning or in an error that would cause the Interactive Data to be rejected.

Link to Interactive Data Test Suite
See summary of changes on change log

SEC Rule Proposal on Financial Disclosures about Guarantors and Issuers of Guaranteed Securities

The proposal, published on October 2, 2018, calls for amendments to the financial disclosure requirements for guarantors and issuers of registered guaranteed securities, and issuers’ affiliates whose securities collateralize registered securities in Regulation S-X. The Commission asks for comment on whether revisions in disclosures should be located inside the financial statements (and therefore subject to XBRL tagging) or outside the financial statements (not subject to XBRL tagging). Comments must be submitted on this proposal by December 3, 2018.

Read the proposal:

SEC Commissioner Stein on “From the Data Rush to the Data Wars”, Speech at Georgia State University School of Law

On September 27, 2018, SEC Commissioner Kara Stein gave a speech at Georgia State University School of Law titled “From the Data Rush to the Data Wars: A Data Revolution in Financial Markets” which focused on the importance of data and technology. During the speech, the Commissioner noted:

“Slowly but surely, the Commission is transitioning its reporting requirements towards a more data centric model.”

Read the full speech:

GREAT Act, Requiring Grants Reporting Using Financial Data Standards, Passed by House

The week of September 24, 2018, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Grants Reporting Efficiency and Agreements Transparency (GREAT) Act of 2018 (H.R. 4887). The House version of the GREAT Act was originally proposed by Congresswoman Virginia Foxx (NC). A Senate version of the bill (S. 3834), introduced by Senators James Lankford (OK) and Michael Enzi (WY), went to markup and was passed by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

Read H.R. 4887:
Read S. 3484:

White Paper Published: XBRL US Center for Data Quality, an industry initiative for the common good

On December 3, 2018, XBRL US published a paper outlining the goals and accomplishments of the XBRL US Center for Data Quality and the organization it funds, the Data Quality Committee. Key results of the Center since its inception in 2015 include:

  • proven increase in data quality as shown by the decline in error rate across public companies
  • greater engagement by the XBRL community with regulators and standard setters
  • more comprehensive review of different types of possible errors in XBRL-formatted financials
  • increased regulatory focus on data quality as shown by recent rules created by the SEC
  • expanded use of XBRL-formatted financial data

The paper also includes the history and milestones reached by the Center.

Read the white paper: XBRL US Center for Data Quality White Paper December 3, 2018

XBRL US Announces Launch of XBRL API in Proposed Release

On November 27, 2018, XBRL US announced the introduction of a free API (Application Program Interface) standard in a Proposed Release, to create, extract and analyze XBRL formatted, computer-readable data. The API is designed to work with any XBRL database or taxonomy. The XBRL API is a standard that acts as a software intermediary, allowing applications to communicate. Analysts, commercial providers & investors are invited to a December 12 webinar to learn more about using the API.

Read the release:
Register for the webinar:
Access the API:

Comment Letter Submitted Concerning SEC’s December 6 Conference on Municipal Securities

On November 26, 2018, XBRL US submitted a comment letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) related to their December 6, 2018 conference, The Road Ahead: Municipal Securities Disclosures in an Evolving Market. Our letter explained the work of the XBRL US State & Local Working Group to develop financial data standards for municipal reporting and urged the Commission to ask the MSRB (Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board) to permit Inline XBRL CAFR filings. We believe that bringing data standards into the municipal marketplace will result in greater efficiencies, transparency and functionality, and the potential for benefits across the supply chain.

Read the letter: XBRL US Letter RE SEC Conference Municipal Securities Disclosure in an Evolving Market

Learn about the conference:

XBRL US Announces RDG Filings Rejoins the Center for Data Quality

On November 1, 2018, XBRL US announced that RDG Filings, a full service XBRL preparation and provider of disclosure management tools, has renewed their membership in the XBRL US Center for Data Quality for 2019. The Center for Data Quality is an industry-driven collaborative with a mission to address the public’s concerns about the quality and usability of XBRL financial data filed with the SEC.

Read the release:

XBRL US Comment on SEC Request on Fund Retail Investor Experience

On October 30, 2018, XBRL US submitted a letter in response to the SEC’s Request for Comment about the Fund Retail Investor Experience. The letter explains the benefits of data standards and in particular, how they benefit retail investors.

Read the SEC RFC:
Read the XBRL US letter: XBRL US Comment Letter RE Fund Retail Investor Experience and Disclosure File No. S7-12-18

XBRL US Comment on GEAR Center

On September 13, 2018, XBRL US submitted a comment letter in response to the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) request for information on a proposed public/private partnership called the Government Effectiveness Advanced Research (GEAR) Center. The goals of the GEAR Center are stated as, “re-imagining possibilities for how citizens interact with the Government; rethinking the delivery of citizen services and data; reforming core processes (e.g., procurement, budget, IT investment and capital allocation”.

The goals of the GEAR Center speak directly to the importance of data as a strategic asset, for federal, state, and local government entities. XBRL US recommends that a core strategy for the GEAR Center should be the development and implementation of government-wide standards for processes and data collected, financial and non-financial.

Read the letter:
Learn about the GEAR Center and read the RFI:<

XBRL US Comments on FSB Peer Review on the LEI

XBRL US submitted a comment letter to the Financial Stability Board (FSB), in response to their Thematic Peer Review on Implementation of the Legal Entity Identifier (LEI). Feedback from stakeholders was invited to gauge awareness and implementation, as well as challenges and impediments to adoption of the LEI around the world. According to the Global LEI Foundation, there are over 172,000 LEIs in the United States. The XBRL US letter notes that the biggest impediments to adoption are the need to change processes, and the costs of obtaining and renewing LEIs.

Read the FSB release:
Read the letter: XBRL US Letter RE FSB Peer Review On LEI 9-21-18 FINAL

Upcoming Webinars from XBRL US

Introduction to the XBRL API Standard – Streamline Your Access to Data

December 12, 3 PM ET
The one-hour webinar will cover:

  • Tools to simplify and streamline access to machine-readable data from US GAAP and IFRS SEC filers
  • How to access data through free, customizable spreadsheets and queries
  • Where you can join the conversation in an online community of XBRL data users
  • What data will be available through XBRL US going forward, for example, financials from Japan, Mexico, Taiwan
  • Tools for commercial providers to load, store. and manage XBRL databases


State & Local Government – Effective Reporting through Standards

January 23, 2pm ET
Attend this free 60-minute webinar to learn about the opportunities to improve government reporting, and how financial data standards can help comptrollers, auditors, and treasurers, as well as end users of municipal data, including credit rating agencies, investors and others. You’ll learn about a program focused on developing these standards and how you can get involved in building the standards. Hear speakers from the National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers and Treasurers (NASACT), the State of Utah, McHenry County, Illinois, the Reason Foundation, Northern Illinois University’s Center for Governmental Studies, and XBRL US.


Replays of Recent Events

XBRL US Investor Forum 2018: Powering Fintech, November 8, 2018

This year’s investor forum featured SEC Commissioner Robert J. Jackson as keynote as well as other speakers from Advan Research, AuditChain, Calcbench, the Council of Institutional Investors, Crux Informatics, the FDIC, idaciti, Intrinio, Merrill Corporation, Novaworks LLC, Refinitiv, Seatig, SavaNet LLC, Securities and Exchange Commission, Tagnifi, TruSet, and XBRL US. This event was hosted by Baruch College’s Zicklin School of Business and held in sponsorship with CFA Institute and CFA Society New York.

Watch the video replay:

Point of View: Fix State & Local Government Now. Here’s How.

XBRL US on how standards can be used to improve efficiencies in municipal reporting.
Read the post:

Recent Point of View topics

Member News

Register to Attend XBRL US Data Quality Committee Meeting, Wednesday, December 5 at 3 PM EDT

At this meeting, industry leaders will participate in discussions and plans for developing guidance and rules for use by public companies complying with the XBRL requirements of the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Get information about the Committee and register to attend:

Upcoming XBRL US Steering Committee Meetings

  • The Earnings Announcement Subcommittee: Tuesday, December 18 at 3 PM EDT
  • The State & Local Government Working Group: Thursday, January 17 at 1 PM EDT
  • The Domain Steering Committee: January (TBD)
  • The Communications Steering Committee has not yet been scheduled

    Upcoming XBRL US Meetings:

XBRL US Members are invited to attend and get involved. Email for details.

Welcome to our newest organizational member
XBRL US Members are committed to engaging and collaborating with other members, contributing to the standard through involvement of their teams, and striving to build awareness and educate the market. Members of XBRL US represent the full range of the business reporting supply chain. This organization recently joined XBRL US:

Truth In Accounting believes truthful accounting is the key for citizens, legislators, and the press to clearly understand the truth about government finances. Its mission is to educate and empower citizens with understandable, reliable, and transparent government financial information.

Not yet an XBRL US member? Maybe it’s time to consider joining XBRL US for yourself ($55 – $500/ year) or your organization (fees vary). Find out more about the benefits of membership and how to become involved by visiting

About Data Quality

SEC filers should all use freely available, Data Quality Committee rules to identify and resolve errors in XBRL-formatted financials for more consistent, better quality data.

Learn about the Rules & Guidance
Find Data Quality Certified applications: