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Introduction to InlineXBRL

The XBRL format makes it possible to structure financial reports and make them machine-readable. For example, revenues receive the unique technical name ifrs: Revenue, also called "tag". It marks the corresponding number in the annual financial report like a barcode. The so-called XBRL taxonomies provide "templates" which are based on different accounting standards, e.g. IFRS. The IFRS taxonomy is thus something like a large generic chart of accounts for all possible IFRS items.


The ESEF taxonomy is based on the IFRS taxonomy. Taxonomy extension must be created for company-specific items. The XBRL report on the left side references the taxonomy positions for each "tagged" figure. The so-called Inline XBRL (also iXBRL) format is XBRL embedded in common HTML. The advantage of this format is that an XBRL report can be opened with any web browser. In fact, not only XBRL will be an obligation, but also HTML annual reports that correspond to “online reports”, published by some companies. Numbers and texts of the HTML report can be tagged with XBRL information in the same document.

Tagging Documents

The XBRL Tagger has the capability to tag the following document types:

  • Micrsoft Word Documents (DOCX)
  • XHTML and iXBRL Documents
  • InDesign Documents (ePub)
  • PDF (comming in 2020).

Most annual financial reports are written in or exported to the common Word format (.docx). The AMANA XBRL Tagger allows users to create InlineXBRL Reports from Word documents. To get a valid InlineXBRL document, all content must be converted to HTML. In addition to the HTML layout, the information contained in the Word document (e.g. numbers and notes) must be enriched with additional meta data:

  • The period or date for which the data is reported
  • The XBRL Tag from the taxonomy related to the value
  • For numbers and dates additional information is required:
    • the scale (e.g. thousands, millions)
    • the precision in relation to decimal places
    • the format (e.g. European, United States, UK)
    • the currency (e.g. EUR, USD)

The Tagger can load any InlineXBRL compatible taxonomy and provides functionality to tag specific values and chapters with items from the taxonomy. Based on the layout of tables and default settings it also tries to infer the above-mentioned metadata. Metadata can be edited on the level of the whole document, a specific table and individual values. Tags and metadata can be saved to the Word document and are loaded automatically if the document is opened again in the tool. This process allows users to make changes to the document even if the tagging process has already started. Once the tagging process is finished, the final InlineXBRL document can be created and reviewed.

Document requirements and limitations

The XBRL Tagger is able to tag MS Word, InDesign, XHTML and PDF documents properly with the following requirements and limitations:

  • It is not possible to tag any value of a table that is included as "image" in a document.
  • For MS Word documents it is not required, but recommended to use styles (heading 1, heading 2, etc.) to structure the documents. The chapter headings are used by the Tagger to allow easy navigation through the document. All tables that have to be tagged must be normal Word tables (no embedded Excel or similar).
  • InDesign documents (IDD) can be tagged by exporting to ePub _(File → Export to ePub). The document must use fonts that are available for web-browsing (XHMTL).
  • Scanned (PDF) reports can't be tagged, the XBRL Tagger does not include an OCR module.
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