Wednesday 17 July 2013

XBRL Sheet - Direct access to XBRL from within Excel

You may have a read these 2 previous posts Instant Comparisons of XBRL in Excel and Looking up XBRL in Excel so you probably know where I am coming from and with the launch of XBRL Sheet we are getting even closer.

You no longer need to leave the comfort of Excel in order to download reams of XBRL data. Through the wonder of web queries, XBRL Sheet provides instant access to the latest filings for an unlimited number of companies. Want to add an additional company to your model, no problem, just create a new query or better still copy an existing one and change the "Co Id" parameter. Want to load up an older filing, just change the period parameter. See the FAQ's for more information on how to do this.

The example spreadsheet downloadable from here follows the same Model/Standard/XBRL arrangement that allows you to hack the data without disturbing your model (or trash the model without effecting your ability to populate a new one - see Looking up XBRL in Excel).

Now, using web queries, you can ensure that the model is always up to date. Set the external data range option to refresh on opening and if you are using the same period parameter that I've set in the example spreadsheet, it will always download the latest filings on opening.

The other beauty of using web queries is that they can quickly be incorporated into a VBA macro so say you wanted to home in on a particular value or ratio for 100 companies, you could write a VBA Macro using XBRL Sheet to do just that. In fact I ought to knock one up and put it in a future post!

Watch the "How To" video here, download the example spreadsheet here and read the FAQ's here.

And to understand more about web queries, you may want to visit this site. Or if you are using a Mac, try this one.

UPDATE: New video to watch showing how to access 10 years of data in the very latest version and here's the post that goes with it.

Now back to the data issues......


  1. couldn't login or register

  2. I'm sorry to hear that. The site is definately up and running so you may want to try again. If still no luck, email me directly and I'll talk you through it (address is in my profile or on the xbrlxl website) - Jim

  3. This is awesome! Is there a way to just request one particular value? I'm working on some Excel UDFs and would like to use your Webservice to be able to get just one value back.

    Is this possible?

  4. Glad you like it! The facility to do this will be coming very soon. You could in the meantime create a function which makes the web query and then roll in a vlookup (like we do in the Standard sheet of the example workbook) to return a single value for a variable parameter to your function. Jim

    1. Nice to hear that! What about navigating the returned DOM? Would that be safe? Or will the DOM structure change from time to time?

  5. Trying to keep the DOM as simple as possible - we can do this as the returned page isn't intended for publication so if it did change, it wouldn't change much. We could also look to publicise any imminent changes to the structure if we felt we had to change it in the future. No expectations of this at the moment. Jim

  6. This is awesome, but currently getting following error
    Service Unavailable

    HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable.

  7. Hi, If I wanted to download 10-12B forms for example not 10K's what value do I change the Model B4 to?

  8. At the moment you can download 10-K's and 10-Q's. And also 20-F's (use the code 4 as per 10-K's).