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SEC requires new reporting language

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The Securities and Exchange Commission is requiring 500 companies, both in the United States and elsewhere, to file financial statements in a new interactive format by April 13, Reuters reports.

The SEC didn’t name the companies, but said the requirement applies to those that have over $5 billion in worldwide public equity float, according to Reuters.

The new format, extensible business reporting language (or XBRL), will allow investors to download financial statements directly into spreadsheets. Companies will be required to use XBRL on revised and updated statements, as well as quarterly and annual reports.

In 2010, the rule would apply to about 1,800 companies; 12,000 companies would be added the following year.