Management Library - How to Find Annual Reports

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  • 1. Management Library - How to Find Annual Reports How to Find Annual Reports This page recommends resources which help to answer the question: q How do I find a company's annual report? It also addresses retrieval of other financial filings and finding financial data for companies in spreadsheet format. HOW TO FIND ANNUAL REPORTS What is an Annual Report? The Differences between an Annual Report, a 10-K, and a Proxy Annual Reports Available in the Library Web-Based Annual Reports Spreadsheet Financial Data International Annual Reports What is an Annual Report? Annual reports are published by publicly-traded companies to educate current and potential stockholders about company activities and performance. They contain discussions of the previous year's activities, plans for the coming year(s), and financial data. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires that companies distribute annual reports to their shareholders. Annual Reports are also available freely to the public for most U.S. companies that offer stock. Back to Top The Differences between an Annual Report, a 10-K, and a Proxy Companies file a variety of documents relating to their financial and operating activities. This section provides a brief introduction to the most sought after filings. FILING NAME PURPOSE & CONTENT The official annual financial document that companies file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The 10-K contains detailed financial statements and financial footnotes. While it does not contain charts, photos, or graphics, it does contain more information than the 10-K typical annual report. It is particularly useful for accounting research or for very specific information. Since it is filed electronically, in text format, it is a searchable document. It does not contain any graphics - so it requires less memory to view (and comes up much faster over a modem). http://www.library.cornell.edu/johnson/library/faq/annreport.html (1 of 4) [5/19/2004 2:06:13 PM]
  • 2. Management Library - How to Find Annual Reports The official document companies distribute annually to shareholders. Annual reports include financial statements and highlights and a management discussion of the previous year. Companies often also add in some graphs and photos to give the document a more polished appearance. Annual Report The annual report is briefer and easier to read and understand than the 10-K. It is a nice document for researchers to start with, particularly those just trying to get an overview of the company. It includes charts and other images which sometimes contain critical information. A filing that contains items on which shareholders vote at corporate annual Proxy meetings. Executive compensation, for example, is usually contained within proxy statements. Note: Edgar's descriptions of SEC forms explains the contents and requirements of each SEC filing and discusses the various situations in which a company needs to file. Back to Top Annual Reports Available in the Library There are several ways to find annual reports when you are at the Management Library; these are listed below. If, however, you are at home or looking for a report outside of library hours, please consult the section of this guide which discusses Web-Based Annual Reports DATE FORMAT LOCATION TYPE OF FILINGS INCLUDED Annual Reports, 10-Ks from NYSE, Latest Year Print Reports Library 2nd Level AMEX, as well as some companies which recruit at the Johnson School Annual Reports, 10-Ks, and proxy Thomson Research statements as well other Edgar filings, 1995-Present Web Service extracted financials in spreadsheet format, and more. Annual Reports in PDF format (including page previews that let you move quickly to a particular page). Includes detailed corporate financial histories (with capital 1996/1997-Present Mergent Online Web Service changes) and operational histories. It also details property, subsidiaries, officers/directors, long-term debt, financial statements, capital stock, and financial statements and ratio analysis. 10-Ks, Annual Reports, and proxies from 1971-1995 Microfiche Library 3rd Level OTC, NYSE, & AMEX companies Pre-1971 Microcard Ask at Reference Desk Annual Reports Back to Top Web-Based Annual Reports q Thomson Research Thomson Research is a Library-subscribed web service which provides filings for companies worldwide. Thomson Research contains SEC filings for companies which trade on a U.S. exchange. In addition, Thomson Research contains annual reports for companies not traded in the U.S. Those reports are usually created in accordance with the laws and accounting standards of the company's home country and may look very different from U.S. reports. In http://www.library.cornell.edu/johnson/library/faq/annreport.html (2 of 4) [5/19/2004 2:06:13 PM]
  • 3. Management Library - How to Find Annual Reports addition, reports for companies not traded in the U.S. are often in the native language of the country in which they are traded. The Library's guide to Thomson Research contains step-by-step searching instructions for the database. q Mergent Online Mergent Online is a Library-subscribed web service which provides access to filings on publicly traded companies. It contains annual Reports in PDF format (including page previews that let you move quickly to a particular page) and includes detailed corporate financial histories (with capital changes) and operational histories. It also details property, subsidiaries, officers/directors, long-term debt, capital stock, and financial statements and ratio analysis. The Library's guide to Mergent Online contains step-by-step searching instructions for the database. q Edgar Edgar is the official archival filing database of the SEC. It is a free site from which all SEC filings are publicly available. It is somewhat less user-friendly than Thomson Research or Mergent Online. It also contains only SEC filings, like 10-Ks and 10-Qs. It does not contain annual reports, since these are not filed electronically with the SEC. However Edgar is a free site available even once you leave Cornell. The Library's guide to Annual Report Retrieval contains step-by-step searching instructions for using Edgar. q Other services There are a multitude of web sites which provide access to annual reports. Some of the more useful (and free) sites are indexed in our Business Internet Index (BII) page for Annual Reports. This BII page contains links to specialty services like PRARS, which will mail you a hard copy of an annual report in about 1 week, and Japan Financials, which provides reports for Japanese companies, written in Japanese. Note: If you are looking for the most recent report for one company only, you might simply want to search for the company's web site. Many companies post their most recent annual reports on their web sites. Some provide historical reports as well. Back to Top Spreadsheet Financial Data If you simply need the 10-K's financial statements (not the management discussion or notes, etc.), it can be awkward to try to cut and paste the data from the text document into an Excel spreadsheet. However, some services have streamlined this process for you. If you need data formatted for spreadsheet analysis, try the following services: Thomson Research Thomson Research has Spreadsheet Financials reports, which are pre-defined displays including balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow data already extracted from the statements and in .xls format. These reports provide up to 10 years of annual or quarterly data for U.S. and international companies. Thomson Research uses a canned financial statement template across all companies. This allows for increased consistency across companies, but less detailed financial statements for each company. Mergent Online Mergent Online also has spreadsheet-based financial reports (search by company name or ticker symbol, then click the Create Reports tab). These reports provide up to 15 years of annual or quarterly data for U.S. and international companies. Mergent Online uses the original format for each company when building spreadsheets. This provides a greater level of detail in the statements of each company, but provides reduced consistency when comparing companies. Mergent Online also allows you to create spreadsheet-based financial reports for multiple companies simultaneously. Research Insight Standard & Poors' Research Insight North America, formerly known as Compustat PC Plus, allows you to customize your reports. You set the report layout and select the data and time period that you want included, specify the company or companies, and Research Insight creates the report. Based on the content of the 10-K and 10-K reports. Up to 20 years of annual data are available. Back to Top http://www.library.cornell.edu/johnson/library/faq/annreport.html (3 of 4) [5/19/2004 2:06:13 PM]
  • 4. Management Library - How to Find Annual Reports International Annual Reports In many cases, it is appropriate to follow the same steps regardless of whether you are searching for a U.S. company report or an international one. However, here are a few extra tips for those hard to find international reports. FORMAT RESOURCE q There is a collection of the print copies of annual reports of large international companies interfiled (in alphabetical order) with the U.S. annual report collection on the library's second floor. Print q It is sometimes possible to request a print copy of an annual report by contacting the company directly q Thomson Research and Mergent Online contain reports for many international companies, whether or not they are also traded on a U.S. exchange. Those reports are usually created in accordance with the laws and accounting standards of the company's home country and may look very different from Online U.S. reports. q Search for the company's web site to see if the company posts its annual reports online. q Consult our Business Internet Index (BII) section on Annual Reports. This page lists international, as well as U.S., sources of annual reports. Back to Top Home| Contact Us | Site Map | Feedback ©2003-04 Johnson Graduate School of Management Library Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853 USA http://www.library.cornell.edu/johnson/library/faq/annreport.html (4 of 4) [5/19/2004 2:06:13 PM]