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On May 24, President Trump signed into law the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act. While the Act primarily serves to relieve smaller financial institutions from the burden of complying with certain requirements under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the Act also directs the Securities and Exchange Commission to adopt amendments to Rule 701 under the Securities Act of 1933 (Securities Act) and so-called “Regulation A+,” as summarized below.  …
On May 11, the staff of the Division of Corporation Finance of the Securities and Exchange Commission (the Staff) issued 45 Compliance and Disclosure Interpretations (C&DIs) that relate to the proxy rules and proxy statements, replacing the Staff’s prior interpretations that were published in the Proxy Rules and Schedule 14A Manual of Publicly Available Telephone Interpretations (the Manual) and the March 1999 Supplement to the Manual (the Supplement). Thirty-five of the C&DIs reiterate prior guidance…
Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. (ISS) recently launched the ISS Help Center, its new online communications portal that will help facilitate inquiries of ISS from investors, companies (issuers) and company advisors, including law firms and proxy solicitors, as well as responses from ISS to such inquiries. The ISS Help Center will provide a framework to submit questions on a range of matters, including proxy voting, shareholder meeting research, QualityScore corporate profiles/methodology questions and research engagement requests.…
As previously discussed in the September 1edition of Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) had issued Proposed Accounting Standards Update (ASU) No. 2015-310, in which the FASB had proposed to remove its definition of materiality established in Concepts Statement No. (CON) 8, Conceptual Framework for Financial Reporting, in favor of relying on the US federal courts’ definition of materiality. The proposed change was intended to allow businesses to use…
On November 6, the Division of Corporation Finance (Division) of the Securities and Exchange Commission issued Compliance and Disclosure Interpretation (C&DI) 271.25 to address permissible safeguards for protection of Rule 701(e) electronic disclosures. Rule 701 provides an exemption from registration under the Securities Act of 1933 for offers and sales of securities under written compensatory benefit plans and contracts to an issuer’s employees, directors, consultants and advisors. Rule 701(e) requires an issuer relying on the…
On October 23, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved new audit reporting standard, AS 3101, proposed by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), which requires auditors to provide new information in public company audit reports, with the goal of making such reports more informative for investors and other financial statement users. The adoption of the PCAOB rule represents the first significant change to the auditor’s report in several decades and will fundamentally change the…
As previously reported in the October 13, 2017 edition of Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest, on October 11, the Securities and Exchange Commission proposed amendments (the Proposal) to modernize and simplify disclosure requirements in Regulation S-K, and related rules and forms. The Proposal is intended to reduce registrants’ burden and costs to comply with the SEC’s disclosure requirements, while making public filings easier for investors to read, navigate and understand, including by discouraging repetitive…
On October 11, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued a press release announcing that it voted to propose amendments to modernize and simplify disclosure requirements in Regulation S-K, and related rules and forms, by updating, streamlining or otherwise improving the SEC’s disclosure framework “in a manner that reduces the costs and burdens on registrants while continuing to provide all material information to investors.” The proposed amendments are based on recommendations made in the staff of…
On September 21, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued an interpretive release (available here) regarding compliance with Item 402(u) of Regulation S-K (the Pay Ratio Disclosure Rule), which sets forth the requirement that each registrant disclose the ratio of the compensation of its principal executive officer (PEO) to its median employee’s compensation. In the interpretive release, the SEC emphasized that the Pay Ratio Disclosure Rule is designed to provide registrants with the flexibility…
On September 15, at the ABA Business Law Section Annual Meeting, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Division of Corporation Finance (Division) Director Bill Hinman provided remarks on various matters, including the Division’s focus on capital formation-related matters. Of particular note, Director Hinman indicated that he expects that Item 402 of Regulation S-K (the Pay Ratio Disclosure Rule) will take effect as planned and, accordingly, will be effective with respect to compensation paid in fiscal…