FASB and XBRL US Align XBRL US GAAP Tags to New Accounting Codification

Washington, DC, August 4, 2009—The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and XBRL US, the nonprofit consortium for XML business reporting standards, announced today that they have completed the work to revise the XBRL US GAAP Taxonomy to reflect the FASB Accounting Standards CodificationTM that was released on July 1, 2009. The Codification is the single source of authoritative nongovernmental US generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and is effective for interim and annual periods ending after September 15, 2009.

In 2008, the FASB created an XBRL project team that worked closely with the XBRL US team to release the new Codification extension taxonomy. The FASB’s XBRL project team reviewed the authoritative references in the current taxonomy and added the related Codification references.   Public companies using the US GAAP Taxonomy to create XBRL-formatted financial statements can now link directly from the taxonomy extension to the specific Codification reference as posted on FASB’s Codification website. The Codification references, in conjunction with the element labels and definitions, provide companies the information they need to select the right element in the taxonomy to accurately reflect their financial statements.

“The FASB Accounting Standards CodificationTM simplifies the process of researching accounting issues by providing a single authoritative source of US GAAP. The work that FASB and XBRL US have done to bring these references into the US GAAP Taxonomy further streamlines the process of financial statement preparation for public companies,” stated Robert H. Herz, chairman of the FASB. “Incorporating the Codification into the US GAAP Taxonomy will give preparers an easy tool that will help them select the appropriate elements for filing their XBRL financial statements.”

The Codification reorganizes the thousands of US GAAP pronouncements into roughly 90 accounting topics and displays all topics using a consistent structure. It also includes relevant Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) guidance that follows the same topical structure in separate sections in the Codification.

The US GAAP Taxonomy was developed by XBRL US under contract with the SEC as a comprehensive set of reporting elements that include GAAP requirements and common reporting practices. Public companies use this digital dictionary when creating XBRL-formatted financials.   The SEC mandated the use of XBRL for all public companies over a three year period; the largest public companies, with a worldwide public float greater than $5 billion, began filing for interim financial statements with periods ending on or after June 15, 2009. 

“We will continue to work closely with the FASB to align the US GAAP reporting elements with all new accounting standards. Public company reporting must change to reflect investor and marketplace needs. The appropriate level of support and maintenance will ensure that the XBRL reporting elements used by public companies reflect the most current industry and accounting standards,” said Mark Bolgiano, president and CEO, XBRL US. “Proper maintenance of the taxonomy is key to giving preparers the tool to create consistent, high-quality financial data that gives investors greater transparency and ultimately better accuracy in their own analysis.”   

Preparers who wish to use the US GAAP Taxonomy with the new FASB Codification incorporated, should log on to http://xbrl.us/taxonomies/Pages/FASBCodification_2009.aspx.

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 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 www.fasb.org.

About XBRL

XBRL (Extensible Business Reporting Language) is a royalty-free, open specification for software that uses XML data tags to describe business and financial information for public and private companies and other organizations. XBRL benefits all members of the information supply chain by utilizing a standards-based method with which users can prepare, publish in a variety of formats, exchange and analyze business and financial statements and the information they contain.


XBRL US is the nonprofit consortium for XML business reporting standards in the United States and is a jurisdiction of XBRL International. It represents the business information supply chain, including accounting firms, software companies, financial databases, financial printers, and government agencies. Its mission is to support the implementation of XML business reporting standards through the development of taxonomies relevant for use by US public and private sectors, working with a goal of interoperability between sectors, and by promoting adoption of these taxonomies through the collaboration of all business reporting supply chain participants. XBRL US has developed taxonomies to support US GAAP and common reporting practices under a contract with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The XBRL US GAAP Taxonomies are available for review at http://xbrl.us/taxonomies/Pages/US-GAAP2009.aspx



Michelle Savage, Vice President, Communication, XBRL US, Inc., michelle.savage@xbrl.us, +1-917-747-1714

Christine Klimek, Communications Manager, Financial Accounting Foundation, clklimek@f-a-f.org, +1-203-956-3459