Monthly Archives: September 2013

Crowdfunding: Not The Innovation You’re Looking For?

Last year I heard that there was a Kickstarter project to fund the republishing of a board game that I enjoyed playing many years ago. (Read to the end to find out which.) I immediately looked it up and put in my contribution, with the promise of getting the game and some goodies if the funding level was reached. It was, but the company was not prepared for the tsunami of interest, or the effort involved. A year has passed, and still no game.

Still, I’m a fan of crowdfunding small projects, but lets not take the idea too far – for example, into the area of floating equity or debt. Crowdfunding companies instead of projects is a bad idea. Here’s why. Continue reading Crowdfunding: Not The Innovation You’re Looking For?

Why XBRL Exists

City seal of Detroit
We Hope For Better Things Rising From The Ashes

The City of Detroit released a joint report of its auditor general and inspector general  yesterday, detailing the problems in several areas of city governance. The areas that have attracted the attention of the media related to the city’s pension funds. The funds have made numerous payments over the years that are outside their purpose, for example year-end cash payments to active workers and pensioners. And it gets worse. Continue reading Why XBRL Exists

SEC to FPI: Carry On, But Perhaps For Not Much Longer

As reported by Accounting Today, the SEC is continuing to advise foreign private issuers (FPIs) that no suitable IFRS taxonomy exists which they could use in their XBRL, therefore they continue to be exempt from the need to file. Contrary to the Accounting Today headline, this is not a change. It has always been the case that a suitable base taxonomy for whatever accounting principles a company uses must exist and be approved by the SEC, such approval being signalled by being listed on the approved taxonomies page.

But there is a new exposure draft of the core IFRS taxonomy, is that a step forward?

Continue reading SEC to FPI: Carry On, But Perhaps For Not Much Longer

Pay ratio disclosure = Dodd-Frank inanity

The SEC voted 3-2 to implement a Dodd-Frank requirement. A law this big has to include some drek, and this is a good example.

A better response, if I may be so bold, would be to require tagging the proxy statement in XBRL so that all executive compensation data was available, and add a requirement to publish the median salary of employees. People can do their own division.


XBRL for Municipal Disclosure: Good or Bad?

Competing posts over at the TABB Forum look at the issue of improving data disclosure in the municipal securities market. Marc Joffe is bullish on XBRL for munis, and thinks XBRL based disclosure would help create better default models. Friedrich Lindenberg is less sanguine, believing that the same positive effect could be achieved with lighter weight standards such as CSV.

None of the players here think the existing PDF based disclosure should be left as it is, everyone agrees that there is a need for improvement. But we’ve been here before. XBRL has often been asked to justify its adoption in comparison to some other standard or incumbent method of collecting data. Continue reading XBRL for Municipal Disclosure: Good or Bad?