News Release 04-23-10


FAF/FASB and XBRL US Labs Announce Research Initiative

Project will advance XBRL taxonomy maintenance and publishing best practices

WASHINGTON, DC and NORWALK, CT, April 23, 2010—XBRL US Labs, the research and development arm of XBRL US, and the Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF), the parent organization of the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), have announced a three-year agreement for cooperative XBRL taxonomy research.

XBRL, or eXtensible Business Reporting Language, is an XML standard for tagging business and financial reports to increase the transparency and accessibility of business information by using a uniform format. XBRL US and the FASB have worked together since 2006 to apply XBRL to US GAAP accounting standards for companies to digitally “tag” complex financial statements and footnotes using a common language.

FAF recently assumed maintenance responsibilities for the 15,000-tag US GAAP taxonomy, which was developed by XBRL US under contract to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). In 2009, the SEC issued rules requiring public companies and foreign private issuers that prepare their financial statements in accordance with US GAAP to phase in use of the US GAAP taxonomy. Under these rules, companies will tag and submit their financial statements and related notes to the SEC using the US GAAP taxonomy.

Under the agreement, FAF and XBRL US Labs will collaborate and work cooperatively with each other to foster the continued high quality and effectiveness of the US GAAP taxonomy and to promote interoperability and consistency between future versions of that taxonomy developed by FAF with other financial reporting taxonomies that XBRL US will develop and implement.

“This agreement is a very positive development for the XBRL standard, for a growing XBRL user base, and for our relationship with XBRL US,” said Terri Polley, FAF President. “Working collaboratively with XBRL US, we have an opportunity to build a more transparent market using XBRL taxonomies.”

The research will build on tools and techniques developed by XBRL US Labs to maintain and publish taxonomies for tagging financial statements. XBRL US Labs is also engaged in other research projects to standardize common business reports for mutual funds, credit ratings, mortgage-backed securities, and corporate actions such as dividends and mergers.

“The collaboration between XBRL US and FAF is a powerful combination of technology standards and accounting standards,” said Barry Melancon, President and CEO of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and XBRL US chairman. “This work will strengthen a solid foundation for expanding XBRL adoption in the public and private sectors.”

Contact: Neal McGarity, FAF Director of Communications, 203-956-5347,

Contact: Michelle Savage, Vice President, Communication, 917-747-1714,

About the Financial Accounting Foundation

The FAF is responsible for the oversight, administration, and finances of both the Financial Accounting Standards Board and its counterpart for state and local government, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board. The FAF also is responsible for selecting the members of both Boards and their respective Advisory Councils.

About the Financial Accounting Standards Board

Since 1973, the Financial Accounting Standards Board has been the designated organization in the private sector for establishing standards of financial accounting and reporting. Those standards govern the preparation of financial reports and are officially recognized as authoritative by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Such standards are essential to the efficient functioning of the economy because investors, creditors, auditors, and others rely on credible, transparent, and comparable financial information. For more information about the FASB, visit our website at


XBRL US is the non-profit consortium for XML business reporting standards in the U.S and it represents the business information supply chain. Its mission is to support the implementation of XML business reporting standards through the development of taxonomies for use by U.S. public and private sectors, with a goal of interoperability between sectors, and by promoting XBRL adoption through marketplace collaboration. XBRL US has developed taxonomies for U.S. GAAP, credit rating and mutual fund reporting under contract with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. XBRL US Labs, the research and development arm of XBRL US, leverages the XBRL US platform, methodologies and people to address the quality of taxonomies and the harmonization of XBRL with other XML standards.