Processing Financial Reports in XML

An Overview

The communication of financial reports between financial institutions and central banks is crucial for a well-regulated economy. In most cases, this communication is made through well-structured formats such as XML. However, this structural information in addition with a plethora of data from the financial report, leads to large files that require more processing time and more computational resources to extract and validate the data from them. To tackle this challenge, we have written a series of small articles that show how we can process these financial reports using Unicage.

In Part 1, we have shown an example of an XML report used in these types of communications and how its structure is divided in different sections. Then, using Unicage, we were able to transform this XML report into a “space-separated value” format, which would facilitate further manipulation of the data.

Then, in Part 2, we transform the file from “space-separated value” format into a tabular format, which offers better readability and organization of the data. We give as example the Checks section of the original XML report and how easy it has become to read and use the information associated with them.

Finally, in Part 3, we show how Unicage can be an efficient tool to perform validations in data. Using as example the Checks file created in part 2, we were able to create a simple script that identifies and isolates the records that do not follow the validation rules or contain missing data.

This is only a small example of how we can use Unicage to process and validate data from financial reports. In future posts, we shall take a similar approach and exemplify how we can process XBRL financial reports that are used in the communication between central banks and the European Banking Authority.

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