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Thoughts on Structured Data
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

And now for some shameless self-promotion: the CFA Institute has published a new article examining how structured data can help with financial analysis, featuring none other than Calcbench as an example of how to put structured data to work productively.

The paper, Data and Technology: How Information is Consumed in the New Age, reviews the uses of structured data: that is, pieces of data “tagged” with descriptors so computer software know what that data is and what the software can do with it.

For example, when you use our Multi-Company Page to pull up the revenue numbers for the S&P 500, our software is actually searching for all data with a tag so it can display the numeric value after that tag on your computer screen. That’s how structured data works.

In the paper, Mohini Singh, director of financial reporting policy at CFA Institute, uses Calcbench to show how someone might compare a company’s accounting policies over time, to see whether and how those policies might change. Later Singh cites us again and our research into operating leases. (Oooh, double-shameless plug of our research on operating leases, too!)

Singh then goes on to discuss how some preparers of financial statements don’t like the chore of filing statements with XBRL (the structured data language used in financial statements), but consumers of those statements — investors and analysts — wolf down structured data like Pringles.

The paper is freely available, so give it a read and let us know what you think. We’re at us@calcbench.com.


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