Costco's corporate documents are models of simplicity


I've always been a big fan of the phrase "keep it simple, stupid," which apparently was created by a person who designed spy planes for a living. But keeping it simple is a lot easier to say than do when it comes to Securities & Exchange Commission filings. I know, because I've had to read plenty of them.

In a nutshell, 10Ks, 10Qs, and proxy statements are usually anything but simple. Instead, they're often dozens (or even hundreds) of pages written in some variation of English that I like to think of as accounting-speak mixed with lawyer-speak. So you can imagine my surprise -- no sheer delight -- when I recently came across the 10K filed by Costco (COST), the giant warehouse club.