The Securities and Exchange Commission announced plans to create its own Web tools to allow investors and analysts to manipulate interactive data to analyze mutual fund and corporate information.

The SEC issued a request for proposal for the development of Web-based analysis software that will enable investors and analysts to use interactive data encoded in the Extensible Business Reporting Language format. XBRL is a technology that tags financial information through disparate applications and carries it through the business reporting chain.

"Looking down the road, we expect that commercially available software products will serve customers in many more sophisticated ways to take advantage of interactive data," said SEC Chairman Christopher Cox, in a statement. "We're enthusiastic about our own plans for the Web, and we look forward with equal enthusiasm to the development of a variety of private-sector applications for both professional and retail use."

The SEC has already launched initiatives to test the use of interactive data in periodic reports for corporations and in investment company reports. And more than two dozen companies of all sizes have joined the SEC's interactive data test group.

The full text of the draft RFP is available on the General Services Administration's Web site at www.fbo.gov/spg/SEC/OAPM/PCB/SECHQ1%2D06%2DR%2D0350/listing.html.

Previously on WebCPA:

AICPA Merges Leadership of Reporting Initiatives (June 15, 2006)

SEC Makes Corporate Reports Fully Searchable (June 14, 2006)More Companies Sign on for SEC's XBRL Project (May 24, 2006)

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