Accounting Standards Representatives from the Office of Chief Accountant discussed new accounting standards.  The Staff commented on the implementation of the new revenue recognition standard, which requires companies to provide a comprehensive view of revenue arrangements in their financial statements, including their disclosures.  The Staff intends to continue to monitor, and comment on, the implementation of the revenue standard.  The Staff noted that nearly all companies will be affected by the adoption of the new…
SEC Chair Clayton testified on December 11, 2018 before the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs.  In his testimony, Chair Clayton reviewed the Commission’s Strategic Plan and outlined the agency’s priorities.  Consistent with his remarks delivered at Columbia University, Chair Clayton reviewed some of the principal accomplishments in 2018, including proposed Regulation Best Interest, the amendments to the smaller reporting company definition, the disclosure simplification amendments, and the proposed changes to financial…
Hung v Ontario Securities Commission, 2018 ONSC 6729 (Div Ct) The Divisional Court has released yet another chapter in the saga of one of the largest frauds in Canadian history.  In 2017, after a 188-day merits hearing, the Ontario Securities Commission (the Commission) released its decision concerning allegations of fraud against Sino-Forest Corporation (Sino-Forest) and its senior officers.  In that decision, the Appellants, as senior officers of Sino-Forest, were found to have authorized, permitted, or…
According to a recent research report by CB Insights, in the third-quarter of 2018, there were 375 VC-backed equity financings that raised over $5.64 billion for fintech companies globally. In total, 1,164 fintech financings have been completed in 2018, through October 31, raising over $32.6 billion in offering proceeds.  Approximately 40% (462) of these deals are from U.S. issuers.  Payments, alternative lending, and capital markets tech companies accounted for the majority of fintech financings, with…
On Friday, the Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission Jay Clayton, the Commission’s Chief Accountant Wes Bricker, and the Chairman of the PCAOB William Duhnke issued a statement reaffirming the significance to the capital markets of high quality and reliable financial statements, which, in turn, depend on the reliability of financial statements, quality audit services and effective regulatory oversight.  The statement notes the particular responsibility of U.S. regulatory agencies in monitoring audit-related information and…
Thursday, December 13, 2018 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. EDT Despite market volatility, 2018 has proven to be a strong year for IPOs. Under the right circumstances, an Up-C structure implemented in connection with an IPO has the potential to deliver significant economic and tax benefits to financial sponsors and other selling shareholders. During this session, Partners Anna T. Pinedo and Remmelt Reigersman will explain: When an “Up-C” structure might be appropriate for an IPO…
FINRA today published its Report on FINRA Examination Findings and highlights private placement related concerns.  In its examinations of the practices of many broker-dealers, the report notes FINRA found instances where the diligence review undertaken in connection with private placements was not sufficient in scope or depth to be considered a “reasonable investigation of the issuer and the securities.”  In its Regulatory Notice 10-22 issued several years ago, FINRA noted that FINRA member firms have…
In a speech yesterday, Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Jay Clayton provided an overview of the Commission’s significant accomplishments in 2018. Chair Clayton noted his approach to the Reg Flex agenda and the setting of more realistic rulemaking priorities.  In the last year, he noted that the Commission advanced 23 of the 26 rules on the Commission’s near-term agenda.  Among the key accomplishments in 2018, Chair Clayton cited the Commission’s work with regard to proposed…
The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) have issued a notice regarding misleading promotional activities by issuers.  The notice includes examples such as press releases, presentations, social media posts and other marketing materials that provide insufficient or unbalanced information or that include unsubstantiated claims about the issuer. Problematic Promotional Practices Examples of potentially misleading promotional activities identified by the CSA include: describing early-stage plans with “unwarranted certainty”, or making unsupported predictions about growth of the market or…
On November 26, 2018, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) issued an order permanently prohibiting Daniel Reeve, a financial planner based in the Kitchener, Ontario area, from participation in Ontario’s capital markets, including trading in any securities and becoming or acting as a registrant. The permanent ban came after Reeve was convicted in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in 2017 for having defrauded at least 41 investors of nearly $10 million (see R v Reeve