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A form that the SEC requires publicly-traded companies to file whenever a significant event happens. These events may affect the company's financial state and therefore the SEC believes that they should be known to the public. Examples of these events include an acquisition, merger, bankruptcy, or change in the composition of the board of directors. 8-K forms are required to be filed within four days of the event.


A report filed with the SEC by any firm seeking to provide information on a material event that affects its financial condition. The report must be filed by any firm with shares traded on a national exchange or in the over-the-counter market. The SEC makes 8-Ks available to the public. Also called Form 8-K.


The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires that all publicly traded companies use Form 8-k to report anything that could have a significant effect on the financial position of the company or the value of its shares.

Events and changes that must be reported -- in most cases within four days -- include bankruptcy, mergers, acquisitions, amendments to the corporate charter or by-laws, a change of directors, a change in the fiscal year, and even a change of name or address of the company.

A company's Form 8-k becomes public information once it is filed, and you can find the report in the SEC's EDGAR database. These 8-k filings are designed to level the playing field between general investors and investors who have special access to information about a company.