Category: SEC Rulemaking

Proposed SEC Exemption for Certain Finders

Proposed SEC Exemption for Certain Finders

On October 7, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (”SEC”) proposed a new limited, conditional exemption from broker-dealer registration requirements of Section 15(a) of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (“Exchange Act”) for “finders” who assist issuers with raising capital in private markets from accredited investors. The proposed exemption would permit natural persons to engage in certain defined and limited activities involving...

It’s Time to Talk Diversity in D and O Questionnaires (with Sample Question)

It’s Time to Talk Diversity in D and O Questionnaires (with Sample Question)

Corporate secretaries of public companies will soon be updating their D&O questionnaires for the 2021 proxy season, and they should consider whether to include a question that allows directors to self-identify as diverse.  While companies may be hesitant to raise the issue, increasingly, they are being asked for diversity data on their boards and employees.   In recent news: The California governor has signed into law...

SEC Updates Accredited Investor and Qualified Institutional Investor Definitions

SEC Updates Accredited Investor and Qualified Institutional Investor Definitions

On August 26, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) adopted amendments to update the definition of “accredited investor” in the Commission’s rules governing certain kinds of private securities offerings, including securities offerings to natural persons and entities conducted pursuant to Rules 506(b) and 506(c) of Regulation D under the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”), and the definition...

What Counts as a “Perk” During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

What Counts as a “Perk” During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

Companies have offered benefits to employees, including executive officers, to enable them to continue their work and otherwise to make their lives easier during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Now the SEC has released additional guidance as to when these benefits constitute perquisites or personal benefits that should be included in executive compensation for proxy disclosure purposes.  See Question 219.05 of the SEC’s Compliance and Disclosure Interpretations. ...

SEC Updates Requirements for Business, Legal Proceedings and Risk Factor Disclosures

SEC Updates Requirements for Business, Legal Proceedings and Risk Factor Disclosures

The Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) has adopted amendments to Regulation S-K to update the description of business (Item 101), legal proceedings (Item 103), and risk factors (Item 105) that public companies are required to provide in certain registration statements and reports. These disclosure requirements have not undergone significant revisions in over 30 years. In related remarks, SEC Chair Jay Clayton emphasized the modernizing...

SEC Supplements COVID-19 Disclosure Guidance Ahead of Second Quarter Reports

SEC Supplements COVID-19 Disclosure Guidance Ahead of Second Quarter Reports

The Securities and Exchange Commission continues to encourage public companies to provide disclosures that allow investors to evaluate the current and expected impact of COVID-19 through the eyes of management and to proactively revise and update disclosures as facts and circumstances change. Ahead of public company reports of their second quarter results, the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance has released a supplement to CF Disclosure...

SEC Adopts Amendments to Improve Financial Disclosures About Acquisitions and Dispositions of Businesses

SEC Adopts Amendments to Improve Financial Disclosures About Acquisitions and Dispositions of Businesses

On May 21, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced rule and form amendments that will affect registrants’ financial disclosures relating to business acquisitions and dispositions.  The amendments are intended to streamline the required disclosures, make more meaningful information available to investors and facilitate access to capital.  These amendments mark the culmination of a year-long effort by the SEC that began with proposed rules changes...

SEC Adopts Temporary Amendments to Regulation Crowdfunding to Provide Relief to Smaller Companies Affected by COVID-19

SEC Adopts Temporary Amendments to Regulation Crowdfunding to Provide Relief to Smaller Companies Affected by COVID-19

On May 4, 2020, the SEC announced final rules that provide temporary, conditional relief from certain requirements of Regulation Crowdfunding, relating to the timing of the offering and the availability of financial statements in issuers’ offering materials.   This relief was effective immediately and is available to certain issuers that meet the eligibility criteria described below. The SEC adopted the temporary rules in response to feedback...

SEC Clarifies the Compliance Deadline for New Mining Disclosure Rules

SEC Clarifies the Compliance Deadline for New Mining Disclosure Rules

On April 29, 2020, the SEC issued new Compliance & Disclosure Interpretations (the “New C&DIs”) that clarified the compliance deadline for many mining companies that file with the SEC on non-MJDS forms such as Form 10-K or Form 20-F to comply with the SEC’s new mining disclosure rules in Subpart 1300 of Regulation S-K. The New C&DIs follow closely on the heels of the National...

SEC Chairman Issues Public Statement Encouraging Public Companies to Make Prompt COVID-19 Disclosure; No Action on Certain Proposed Rule Making until May 1

SEC Chairman Issues Public Statement Encouraging Public Companies to Make Prompt COVID-19 Disclosure; No Action on Certain Proposed Rule Making until May 1

On April 2, 2020, SEC Chairman John Clayton, issued a public statement amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In the statement, Chairman Clayton stated that the Commission and its staff remain focused on protecting the interests of Main Street investors who are “the lens through which” the Commission evaluates if it is effectively advancing its mission and noting that the Commission “continue[s] to allocate [its] resources...