News Release 02-05-10


Financial Accounting Foundation to Maintain XBRL Taxonomy for

Norwalk, CT, February 5, 2010—The Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF) today announced its new responsibility for the ongoing maintenance of the U.S. GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy applicable to public issuers registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The FAF and Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) will assemble a small team of technical staff dedicated to maintaining the taxonomy and will work towards the release of the next taxonomy update in early 2011. Today’s announcement is the culmination of several months of discussions between the FAF and the staff of the SEC.

The U.S. GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy is a list of computer-readable tags in eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) that allows companies to label precisely the thousands of pieces of financial data that are included in typical long-form financial statements and related footnote disclosures. The tags allow computers to automatically search for and assemble data so it can be readily accessed and analyzed by investors, analysts, journalists, and the SEC staff.

FAF Chairman Jack Brennan stated, “The FASB team assigned to taxonomy maintenance will work closely with the SEC, investors, issuers, accounting firms, and other stakeholders to develop updates that are of the highest quality.”

The FAF’s maintenance activities will be focused on updating the taxonomy for changes in U.S. GAAP, best practices in taxonomy extensions, and technical enhancements.

The 2009 taxonomy currently in use by SEC issuers was developed by XBRL US, Inc., an independent non-profit organization with research, development, and education programs facilitating the widespread adoption of XBRL for tagging business reports across all business domains to aid investors and other users. The FASB provided technical accounting standards support to XBRL US during the development of the 2009 taxonomy, and expects to continue cooperative interactions with XBRL US going forward.

Open Positions 

About the Financial Accounting Foundation

The FAF is responsible for the oversight, administration, and finances of both the Financial Accounting Standards Board and its counterpart for state and local government, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board. The FAF also is responsible for selecting the members of both Boards and their respective Advisory Councils.

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