Answered By: Marc Vinyard
Last Updated: Apr 07, 2015     Views: 46

Annual reports are generally only available for publicly-traded companies. If your company is privately-held, annual reports are usually not available. Also, if you company is a subsidiary you will have to conduct your search with the name of the parent company (unless the subsidiary company has its own ticker symbol).

Most publicly-traded foreign companies will have annual reports available. These reports are aimed at investors and they contain several glossy photographs.

If a foreign company is traded on a U.S. stock exchange, they will file 20-F reports with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These 20-F reports will provide a detailed report of a company's financial activities over the last year. 20-F's are a rough equivalent of the 10-K reports that American companies file with the SEC.

Annual Reports and 20-F reports will be available in multiple locations.

One option is the library database Mergent Online 

Example #1: I need an annual report for Sony.

  • Type in either sony or the ticker symbol (sne) into the box
  • Click Go
  • Click the link for Glaxosmithkline
  • Click the link for Reports
  • Annual reports and 20-F filings will be listed

Most companies will list Annual Reports and 20-F's (if they file a 20-F with the SEC) on their web sites. These financial documents will usually appear in the company's "investor relations" section of their web site.

You will also be able to locate 20-F reports from the SEC Edgar web site. Remember that many publicly-traded foreign companies are not traded on American exchanges and they will not file 20-F reports with the SEC.