Automatic Selection of Table Areas in Documents for Information Extraction

  • Ana Costa e Silva
  • Alípio Jorge
  • Luís Torgo
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 2902)


The information contained in companies’ financial statements is valuable to several users. Much of the relevant information in such documents is contained in tables and is currently mainly extracted by hand. We propose a method that accomplishes a prior step of the task of automatically extracting information from tables in documents: selecting the lines that are likely to belong to tables. Our method has been developed by empirically analyzing a set of Portuguese companies’ financial statements using statistical and data mining techniques. Empirical evaluation indicates that more than 99% of table lines are selected after discarding at least 50% of all lines. The method can cope with the complexity of styles used in assembling information on paper and adapt its performance accordingly, thus maximizing its results.


Information Extraction Data Mining Technique Plain Text Source Document Automatic Selection 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ana Costa e Silva
    • 1
  • Alípio Jorge
    • 2
  • Luís Torgo
    • 2
  1. 1.Banco de PortugalPortugal
  2. 2.Faculdade de Economia do Porto, LIACCUniversidade do PortoPortugal

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