Category: SEC Rulemaking

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

Cam C. Hoang

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

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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

Jason Brenkert

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

Christopher L. Doerksen

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

Jason Brenkert

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...

SEC Extends Filing Relief for Companies Affected by COVID-19

Cam C. Hoang

The Securities and Exchange Commission has extended an earlier order, so that subject to certain conditions that we reported on here, public companies may have an additional 45 days from the original due date to file their Exchange Act reports that are otherwise due between March 1 and July 1, 2020. Companies relying on this relief, in compliance with the conditions imposed by the order,...

SEC Staff Offers Relief From Manual Signature Requirements Amid Coronavirus Concerns

Kimberley R. Anderson

As more annual meetings may be held virtually this year, and many board meetings are being held telephonically due to social distancing or travel restrictions caused by COVID-19, working remotely has created a number of logistical challenges for companies, including the gathering of manually executed signature pages for electronic filings with the SEC. The Staff of the SEC has now provided guidance to help address...

New SEC Proposed Amendments Seek to Improve and Harmonize Private Offering Exemptions

Jason Brenkert

On March 4, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) proposed amendments to the private offering exemptive framework under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”) to “simplify, harmonize, and improve certain aspects of the framework” with the goal of promoting capital formation while maintaining investor protections. The current private offering framework is a set of exemptions and safe harbors which...

SEC Amends Definition of Accelerated and Large Accelerated Filer

Jason Brenkert

On March 12, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) adopted amendments to the “accelerated filer” and “large accelerated filer” definitions in the Rule 12b-2 under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”). The amendments would exclude from the definition of “accelerated filer” and “large accelerated filer” issuers that are eligible to be smaller reporting companies and that have less...

Impact of COVID-19: SEC Issues Guidance on Conduct of Annual Meetings

Kimberley R. Anderson

I live and work in the Seattle area. As a result of COVID-19, school districts are now closed for 6 weeks, Seattle public libraries are closed for a month, a number of restaurants have closed for the time being and my beloved Mariners’ baseball season has been postponed (along with most other sporting events). As we adjust to the current realities of dealing with COVID-19,...