Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Fermi Calculations for XBRL

CompSci Resources, LLC

Washington, DC – Recently, our team of engineers has been working on new ways to analyze and make eXtensible Business Markup Language (XBRL) even more accessible and useful for the common investor. During these brainstorming sessions, it occurred to us that the standard has a rather limiting attribute that can be expanded to vastly improve XBRL’s accessibility.

Currently, the XBRL standard itself permits precision to be specified in two ways: with significant figures, and with decimals. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires the use of decimals since this is the most intuitive of the two, and the most commonplace in practice.

To open the door to a more expansive interpretation of standard financial statements, a new way of specifying precision for XBRL Calculations is proposed here. This method is one that is likely to resonate with financial analysts, engineers, and accountants alike: Fermi.