Friday, October 29, 2004

Financial Footnotes in 10-K Reports

I spent a few minutes last week examining the options for searching and viewing the footnotes of 10-K reports in various databases including Thomson, Mergent, the SEC's EDGAR, Factiva, and the free SEC Info. Factiva which uses the SEC Info platform gives the most flexibility and is the easiest to use. Once you choose the company document, for example, the 10-K, you can search for any words in the text of that filing by using the "Find" box at the top of the page. Results are returned in KWIC format with links that open to the page.
Access to some features through Factiva requires registration, so users might want to go directly to SEC Info. An added feature of SEC Info is that it includes internal document links to related filings. For example, a mention of a union contract is hyperlinked to the exhibits in a previous filing that describe the contract.

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