What is XBRL?
- By Paula Shaki Trimble
- Jun 12, 2000
What is XBRL?
Extensible Business Reporting Language, formerly code-named Financial
Reporting Markup Language, is a freely available electronic language for
financial reporting. It is based on the industry standard Extensible Markup
Language (XML). The XBRL framework provides the financial community with
a standards-based method to prepare, publish in a variety of formats, reliably
extract and automatically exchange financial statements and the information
they contain. XBRL is not about establishing new accounting standards but
enhancing the usability of the current ones in an electronic commerce
How will XBRL be used?
XBRL will be used to digitally publish financial statements that are
issued to external users by companies and government agencies. An XBRL-based
financial statement is a digital version of a paper-based financial statement
and includes a balance sheet, an income statement, a statement of equity,
a statement of cash flows, notes to the financial statements and an accountant's
report. XBRL for Financial Statements is the first product in a future
family of XBRL-based products.
What are the main benefits of XBRL for government?
* Allows for better management decisions for the agency through easier
analysis of internal financial information.
* Facilitates the move to Internet- enabled financial systems.
* Frees government resources and reduces costs for the preparation
of internal financial statements.