Why Review SEC Filings and the Annual Report?
Companies must file regular reports with the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) in order to sell shares on major stock exchanges. These reports include detailed descriptive information on products, organization, distribution and risk factors ,as well as financial statements.
A company's annual report to stockholders is often more of a public relations tool. A key portion is the President's Letter that will highlight major events and strategies. Many companies now append the Form 10-K report to the letter to form the annual report.
SEC's EDGAR database may also have financials for private company in the early stages of filing with the SEC for an initial public offering (IPO).
Besides the President's Letter, key SEC filings to review are:
- 10K annual form for operations insight (business description--distribution channels, competition, risk factors & more--and management discussion) as well as financials
- 10Q quarterly report
- S-1 initial registration filing for IPOs & new registrants - article on how to read an S1 Statement
- 20-F reports for non-US companies
Canadian company filings are often referred to SEDAR, the Canadian equivalent of EDGAR.
Sources below provide SEC filings and related filings:
These sites provide summary information for recent filings with links. Check the SEC EDGAR Search for all S-1 and IPO filings.