Tuesday, June 7, 2022

This month Calcbench will be taking a deep dive into segment reporting, and how analysts can quickly find such data even when that information is buried away in the footnotes.

Our first example: the beauty segments for consumer product makers Procter & Gamble ($PG) and Unilever ($UN).

We chose these two companies specifically because they file their financial data according to different sets of accounting rules. P&G, headquartered in Ohio, files according to U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Rules. Unilever, based in London, files according to International Financial Reporting Standards.

Historically, comparing GAAP and IFRS filers required a lot of manual searching and pasting into Excel. With Calcbench, however, those days are gone!

To perform our analysis, we used our Interactive Disclosures page, which allows users to search footnote disclosures by type. One such disclosure type is Segments. We first pulled up the Segment disclosure for Unilever, and then held our cursor over the number for the beauty segment. That allows us to export previous values for that disclosure in Excel — meaning, we could quickly get a spreadsheet of Unilever’s revenue and operating profit, for its beauty segment, for the last several fiscal periods. See Figure 1, below.

Then we repeated that exercise with Procter & Gamble, exporting its beauty segment disclosures for the last few fiscal years. See Figure 2, below.

This entire exercise took us about two minutes. Then we took another 15 minutes to make the spreadsheet data look pretty, and we ended up with a comparison of operating income and operating margin specifically for the companies’ beauty segments, even though the companies file according to different accounting standards.

That’s the power of XBRL-tagged data, which is the technology Calcbench uses to manage our databases. So whatever segments you’re hoping to find, we have it somewhere, and you can pull it together with just a few keystrokes.

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