This file contains overall receipts and disbursements for each political committee, group or individual registered with the Commission, along with a breakdown of overall receipts by source and totals for contributions to other committees, independent expenditures made, etc. The information is taken from summary information provided by the committees in each of their financial reports submitted to the Commission. The specific data elements are those included on the summary and detailed summary pages of FEC Form 3 (for campaign committees) or FEC Form 3X (for PACs and Parties) and other specialized reports for organizations that are not required to file regular financial reports. All of the reporting forms can be viewed at http://www.fec.gov/info/forms.shtml. The record for each committee contains summary financial information, updated nightly based upon reports received through 7 pm the previous day.
As part of each financial report, committees must provide a summary of their financial activity in each filing, and these summaries are combined for the full two year period (the election year and the preceding year for each federal election) to create these records. Specific information in the file includes overall receipt and disbursement totals as well as subtotals for types of receipts (e.g. contributions from individuals, loans from the candidate, etc.).
There are a number of different types of organizations who file financial reports with the FEC;