The XML-baseddescription language Extensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) was developed for the exchange of corporate and financial data. XBRL is an open, free and cross-platform standard used by financial institutions, auditors, commercial registers, banks and government agencies.
Financial data prepared in XBRL file format can be posted directly to the Web or made available to business partners. XBRL file formats are used in annual reports and balance sheets and have national and legal scopes, such as for the Companies Act or commercial law.
The XBRL file format relates figures and texts of electronic business reports to each other. The elements of the Extensible Markup Language (XML) are tailored to the financial aspects. From creation to distribution and publication to evaluation by the recipient, XBRL files are always available in a uniform, standardised presentation format and can be evaluated automatically.
Examples for the use of XBRL are the electronic Bundesanzeiger (Federal Gazette) in which the annual financial statements of companies are published and the American Securities and Exchange Commission.