With most mandate Group 1 companies coming off their 12/31 10-K XBRL submission and already preparing for the 3/31 XBRL submission, the company's extension taxonomy comes into focus a bit more than in the previous filing seasons. The reason for this is that as companies roll from the K to the Q, there exists extension taxonomy information that is typically no longer necessary in the following specific areas:
- Cash Flow and Statement of Stockholders Equity (SSE) - K contains more rows/more detail than the same reports in the Q
- SSE - Only reported in the K, not in the Q
- Notes and/or Schedules - Not all those reported in K are in the Q
As the 12/31 10-K extension taxonomy is rolled forward to prepare for the 3/31 10-Q, the 3/31 taxonomy typically inherits the information used for the K. The decision point for a company is whether or not to leave this additional taxonomy information (elements/tags, report section) from the K in as part of their extension taxonomy for the Q. This extra information, while not necessarily harmful at a technical level, could cause increased review risk (harder to review something that doesn't have any tagged data associated with it) and potential rendering issues (data "flow through" on the SEC Viewer/Pre-Viewer).
The SEC EDGAR Manual is silent on this topic, and the SEC has commented that a company could take either side of the argument and thus appears content to not really have a formal opinion.
Our take: Why include anything in the XBRL submission that ultimately doesn't need to be there? Unfortunately the adage of "what you can't see can't hurt you" doesn't apply to XBRL. Remove the unnecessary extension taxonomy information to keep your XBRL files as lean-and-mean as possible. Anything that helps minimize potential rendering issues and overall review/approval risk while not harming analytics/comparability is a good thing.