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The Reliability of R&D Data in COMPUSTAT and 10-K Reports

Joseph G. San Miguel
The Accounting Review
Vol. 52, No. 3 (Jul., 1977), pp. 638-641
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/246083
Page Count: 4
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The Reliability of R&D; Data in COMPUSTAT and 10-K Reports
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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to report on the findings from a study that compared the research and development information in COMPUSTAT with the information contained in Form 10-K reports to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The comparisons indicated that numerous, and sometimes significant, inaccuracies existed between the two widely used sources of financial information. Also, in a number of cases, the information disclosed in 10-K reports was deficient in explaining the differences. Although this investigation was limited to a specific item of financial data for a single period, there are a number of implications for researchers planning to make use of computerized data bases and for those responsible for evaluating their research. To overcome the potential errors in financial information gathered for research purposes, several recommendations are discussed.

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