EDGAR (the Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval System) performs automated collection, validation, indexing, acceptance, and forwarding of submissions by companies and others who are required by law to file forms with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Not all documents filed with the Commission by public companies will be available on EDGAR. Companies have been phased in to EDGAR filing over a three-year period, ending May 6, 1996. As of that date, all public domestic companies are required to make their filings on EDGAR, except for filings made to the Commission’s regional offices and filings made in paper because of a hardship exemption. Some documents are not yet permitted to be filed electronically, and consequently will not be available on EDGAR. Other documents may be filed on EDGAR voluntarily, and consequently may or may not be available on EDGAR. The actual annual report to shareholders (except in the case of investment companies) need not be submitted on EDGAR, although some companies do so voluntarily. However, the annual report on Form 10-K or 10-KSB, which contains much of the same information, is required to be filed on EDGAR.