For Energy Companies, Tagging Regulations Require a New Approach

Energy firms will soon start reporting quarterly and annual monetary and operational information in XBRL format to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The XBRL format isn’t new for public companies that have been submitting reviews with XBRL tags to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for years, however the taxonomy for tagging FERC types might be totally different.

In many respects, the burden should be lighter for FERC filers than SEC filers. Both will rely on the XBRL 2.1 Specification (which defines the fundamental building blocks of XBRL implementation in enterprise reporting) and the Arelle open-source XBRL validation engine. And a “fact” in both reports is represented by a value (numeric or non-numeric), elements, date, unit, and accuracy.
But, as we detail below, you’ll notice fairly a number of variations with FERC’s XBRL necessities.

Standard schedules enable for extremely prescriptive tag assignments. That means no more tagging from scratch. For instance, the Workiva resolution for FERC reporting provides customers with pre-tagged varieties. These standardized pre-tagged types not only reduce preparation efforts significantly, they also reduce tagging inconsistencies—you can obtain larger data high quality with much less effort.
Also, you aren’t required to tag each quantity. Notes to financial statements require block tags solely. For example, if disclosure notes are pasted into FERC Form 1 from the 10-K you file with the SEC, these could be tagged with a single text block for FERC. A bonus for users of the Workiva resolution for SEC reporting and the Workiva resolution for FERC reporting: You will be ready to link information in your 10-K to your pre-tagged Form 1 for consistency and efficiency.
If no applicable XBRL concept is available, the data is not to be tagged. However, if an relevant concept exists, FERC requires the data to be tagged (both numeric and nonnumeric). Note that some required info may be reported within footnotes for schedules.
Additionally, no extensions are allowed. Besides concepts, axes and members are also to be used as supplied. So, how do you report company-specific information, such as officer names? In order to support reporting of company-specific info, FERC makes use of the typed dimension.
The bonus for Workiva users? Although FERC uses a different technical specification, you will notice the Workiva FERC reporting solution offers the identical appear and feel as axis/member utility within the Workiva answer for SEC reporting.

For FERC reporting, no customized labels or label roles are wanted. Labels are auto-assigned by the official FERC renderer primarily based on form areas. Also, there are not any calculation to define. In fact, customized calculations usually are not permitted. Validation rules will deal with consistency checks.
Since FERC taxonomy assigns particular hypercube to every schedule, there is not any define structure to build. For customers of Workiva for FERC reporting, that is automatically managed by the Workiva platform.
Plus, reality ordering is not managed by the outline and is not required. FERC makes use of a numeric element “OrderNumber” to control sequencing of company-specific information. Users of the Workiva answer for FERC reporting can simply assign row numbers in the type schedules as “OrderNumber” within the Workiva platform. Lastly, there are not any custom dates as you’re restricted to a small record of allowable values.

Going ahead, there is no digital form to submit. Machine-readable information is the key focus. Although not in iXBRL format, FERC’s official kind renderer will present standardized viewing for the submitted XBRL data.

Since most submitting information to the SEC is public document, the SEC doesn’t offer this, however FERC does. Whether FERC will actually approve a request for confidential knowledge is another question! If digital pressure gauge have an XBRL vendor for SEC reporting, make certain your vendor also supports FERC compliance, for the reason that FERC taxonomy will not be the identical because the SEC reporting taxonomy.

Whether you outsource XBRL tagging, select an XBRL software vendor, or invest the time and money to construct and preserve an in-house answer for FERC compliance, understanding the similarities and differences between XBRL filings for FERC and for the SEC shall be essential when evaluating your options.

Percy Hung is director of structured information initiatives and Peter Larison is supervisor of structured knowledge initiatives at Workiva. Workiva, Inc. is a global software-as-a-service firm. It provides a cloud-based connected and reporting compliance platform that enables the usage of related information and automation of reporting throughout finance, accounting, risk, and compliance. For more info, go to


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