What It Is:
A quarterly report is a set of financial statements issued by a company every three months. Public companies in the United States file this report via the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Form 10-Q.
How It Works/Example:
A quarterly report for a public company typically includes an income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement for the quarter and the year-to-date (YTD), as well as comparative results for the prior year. Quarterly reports also include a discussion and analysis of the company's financial condition, disclosures about risk factors that may affect the value of the company, a discussion of matters submitted to a vote by shareholders during the quarter; and any other pertinent information related to the company and its business.
Generally, quarters end in March, June, September, and December, and quarterly reports are filed a few weeks later.
Why It Matters:
Quarterly reports help investors take the pulse of public companies. By comparing the quarterly information to the previous year's information for the same quarter, investors can get rich insight into a business's performance and growth. Furthermore, quarterly reports help investors predict future earnings potential, which is highly correlated to a company's share price.