At the end of each fiscal year, companies and mutual funds issue their annual reports. These contain detailed information on the operations and financial picture for the company during the past year, both in text and graphic form.
Normally, all annual reports contain:
Resumé of the financial year in question;Short presentation (text, graphics, tables);Management position/analysis/letter to the investors;Financial data;Audit report;Company information, as well as any other data that may be considered relevant to investors.
The legislation for such reports was passed after the 1929 US market crash, making annual financial reporting mandatory. Companies listed on stock exchanges are required to submit reports with higher frequency; these are, however, unaudited in most cases.
The annual report is one of the most comprehensive information sources that exist on a company’s situation.