What is the Quarterly Report?
Quarterly reports are the unaudited financial reports which are summarized versions of financial statements that is released by public companies every three months (quarter) to adhere to the compliance requirements.These reports help in the reduction of information asymmetry as well as in the reduction of the probability of any potential window dressing.
How Does it Work?
- These reports are filed with the securities and exchange commission.
- These usually are unaudited reports.
- Such figures may be utilized for comparative analysis.
- It can be utilized to assess the year-to-date performance of the company.
- As a compliance requirement, all public listed companies have to file the quarterly reports with the securities and exchange commission.
- For non-listed companies, the key stakeholders can request the release of such reports from the investor relations committee. Typically, the profit and loss statementsProfit And Loss StatementsThe profit and loss statement is a financial report that summarizes the company's revenues and expenses over a period of time to determine profit or loss for that period. are not readily available for public viewing.
- Usually, a stakeholder or an investor can access these reports from the securities and exchange commission.
- They are available as Form 10Q under the securities and exchange commission.
- Similarly, the annual reports are available as 10K reports.
- The investor or an analyst can, therefore, visit the electronic data gathering, analysis, and retrieval systems or the EDGAR of SEC to access the 10Q.
- They have to pass the name of the company in the search box of EDGAR.
- The quarterly reports are to be filed as per clause 41 of the listing agreement.
- From the quarter-end and at the end of 45 days, the reports should be filed.
- The report should be composed of the current Quarter, comparable Quarter, and year-to-date figures.
- It should report total gross revenue, operational expensesOperational ExpensesOperating expense (OPEX) is the cost incurred in the normal course of business and does not include expenses directly related to product manufacturing or service delivery. Therefore, they are readily available in the income statement and help to determine the net profit., cash flowCash FlowCash Flow is the amount of cash or cash equivalent generated & consumed by a Company over a given period. It proves to be a prerequisite for analyzing the business’s strength, profitability, & scope for betterment. , and net profits.
Format of Quarterly Report
- It should cover a brief message from the board of directors Of DirectorsBoard of Directors (BOD) refers to a corporate body comprising a group of elected people who represent the interest of a company’s stockholders. The board forms the top layer of the hierarchy and focuses on ensuring that the company efficiently achieves its goals. to be shared with the stakeholders.
- They should highlight the performance of the Quarter ending financials.
- It should provide a balance sheetBalance SheetA balance sheet is one of the financial statements of a company that presents the shareholders' equity, liabilities, and assets of the company at a specific point in time. It is based on the accounting equation that states that the sum of the total liabilities and the owner's capital equals the total assets of the company..
- It should provide an income statementIncome StatementThe income statement is one of the company's financial reports that summarizes all of the company's revenues and expenses over time in order to determine the company's profit or loss and measure its business activity over time based on user requirements. and statement of cash flowsStatement Of Cash FlowsA Statement of Cash Flow is an accounting document that tracks the incoming and outgoing cash and cash equivalents from a business..
Example of Quarterly Report
Let us take an example of the XYZ credit agency. The agency is planning to release its quarterly report for the First Quarter. It has asked its company secretary to prepare a draft of this report. All the financial details have been shared with the XYZ credit agency. Help the company secretary to prepare this report.
Message from the board,
The board of directors has approved the release of unaudited financial statementsFinancial StatementsFinancial statements are written reports prepared by a company's management to present the company's financial affairs over a given period (quarter, six monthly or yearly). These statements, which include the Balance Sheet, Income Statement, Cash Flows, and Shareholders Equity Statement, must be prepared in accordance with prescribed and standardized accounting standards to ensure uniformity in reporting at all levels. for the Quarter ending 31/03/2019. The board feels happy to share financials with positive numbers with the stakeholders. The board has taken up additional strategic initiatives that would further help in improving the financial conditions of the business.
For Quarter ending 1, the balance sheet is as follows: –
|Total Current Assets||$8,200||$8,500|
|Current Portion of Debt||$2,000||$2,400|
|Total Current Liabilities||$6,700||$6,200|
|Long Term Debt||$2,000||$4,300|
|Cost of Sales||$800||$950|
- As per the compliance requirements of federal securities laws, the publicly traded entities have to release financial informationFinancial InformationFinancial Information refers to the summarized data of monetary transactions that is helpful to investors in understanding company’s profitability, their assets, and growth prospects. Financial Data about individuals like past Months Bank Statement, Tax return receipts helps banks to understand customer’s credit quality, repayment capacity etc. on an annual basis and quarterly basis.
- Such disclosures help in driving transparency among different stakeholders.
- A thorough and comprehensive prepared financial statements drive accountability and hence helps the financial markets to operate efficiently.
- The release of such information at periodic intervals helps in curbing information asymmetryInformation AsymmetryAsymmetric information is the knowledge mismatch that happens when one party secures more information about a product or service than the other party to the transaction. The information failure is often seen when the seller is more informed about a product's condition than the buyer. and insider tradingInsider TradingInsider trading is defined as the act of taking key trading decisions related to a company’s listed stock using critical non-public information. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) penalizes offenders of illegal insider trading as it causes material loss to the investors. It also shakes their faith in the stock market. .
- The release of such reports helps prospective investors to decide whether they should invest in such business or not.
- Since these reports are to be prepared in line with the compliance requirements of the federal laws, such reports are standardized and easy for the layman to understand them.
- As a compliance requirement, the quarterly reports are to be filed within 45 days with each quarter-end.
- It ensures that stakeholders have prompt access to crucial information, and they can easily drive critical decision making for themselves.
- It ensures the reduction in volatility that comes into the picture of price-sensitive entities.
- Such practices enhance investor confidence and reduce the competitive disadvantages that exist between different markets.
Difference Between Quarterly Report and Annual Report
- The annual reports are reports that the business has to release to its shareholders on an annual basis.
- The quarterly reports are released quarterly.
- The annual reports would consist of auditor opinion, management discussion analysisManagement Discussion AnalysisMD&A or management discussion and analysis is the part of financial statements where the company’s management discusses the company’s current performance using qualitative and quantitative measures to realize the details that otherwise would not have been available for analysis., and the financial statements for the current financial year.
- The quarterly reports may be composed of the only year’s financial statements and quarter financials, which are generally unaudited. They do not have any auditor opinion or management discussion analysis.
- The annual reports are normally filed as 10K in the SEC, whereas quarterly reports are available as 10Q.
- The deadline to file annual reportsAnnual ReportsAn annual report is a document that a corporation publishes for its internal and external stakeholders to describe the company's performance, financial information, and disclosures related to its operations. Over time, these reports have become legal and regulatory requirements. is within 60 days, whereas, for interim financials, the deadline is slated as 45 days for making a submission.
- It reduces information asymmetry
- It boosts investor confidence and hence helps in bringing additional investments for the business.
- It helps prepare trailing twelve months, which is determined by employing two comparable quarterly statements and one recent annual financial statementAnnual Financial StatementAnnual Financial Statements refers to the annual presentation of the entity's financial performance comprising a Balance Sheet, statement of profit and loss, statement of changes in equity, cash flow statement, and notes to the financial statements. It provides information to the stakeholders for making financial decisions about the business..
- It reduces any scope of window dressingWindow DressingWindow dressing in accounting refers to the intentional manipulation of financial statements by company management in order to present a more favourable picture of the company to users of the financial statement before it is released to the public. in the financials, which is hard to annual reports. Window dressing is the process of making year-end financial statements attractive so that new investors could be attracted to the business.
- Since window dressing and information asymmetry are reduced, this results in the display of transparent financial statements.
- Any activity that is mentioned on the quarterly reports but absent on the annual reports can impact the growth prospects of the business.
- Since these statements are not audited, they may not be easily understood to the layman.
- It is difficult to prepare these reports that are in line with the performance objectives of the company consistently.
- These reports are generally not standardized as compared with the annual reports.
The quarterly reports are unaudited financial statements released at every quarter-end. These reports are fairly different from annual reports. Such reports help in releasing information that helps in the promotion of investor confidence in the business. Any stakeholder who is keen to access these reports can download the reports from the SEC as the quarterly reports are available as 10Q under the EDGAR section of the SEC.
This article has been a guide to what is a quarterly report. Here we discuss requirement, format, example, and how does quarterly report works along with advantages and disadvantages. You may learn more about financing from the following articles –