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IG Evaluates SEC’s Disclosure Review and Comment Process

The Office of the Inspector General has issued an evaluation of the Division of Corporation Finance’s disclosure review and comment process. The report begins with a description of the Division’s comment process. Perhaps the...more

Effect of the New Revenue Recognition Standard on M&A

FASB’s new revenue recognition standard is expected to have wide ranging effects on M&A transactions. The new revenue recognition standard under GAAP (Accounting Standards Update 2014-09; Topic 606) will be applicable to...more

SEC Identifies Most Frequent Compliance Issues Associated with Advertising by Investment Advisers

The SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations has provided a list of compliance issues relating to Rule 206(4)-1, which is referred to as the Advertising Rule, under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. In...more

MSRB Warns Municipalities, Underwriters and Municipal Advisors about Selective Disclosure

Regulation FD prohibits public companies from disclosing material nonpublic information to designated classes of persons such as securities professionals and holders of the issuer’s securities without, in most cases,...more

SEC Chief Accountant Speaks to Financial Statement Requirements for Initial Coin Offerings

SEC Chief Accountant Wesley R. Bricker recently gave remarks at the AICPA National Conference on Banks & Savings Institutions. Mr. Bricker spoke to the adoption of FASB’s new credit loss standard and related implementation...more

New York City Comptroller Launches Campaign for Corporate Board Diversity, Independence, and Climate Expertise

New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer and the New York City Pension Funds launched the “Boardroom Accountability Project 2.0.” The campaign seeks to make corporate boards more diverse, independent, and...more

Duka Beats Fraud Charge in SEC Administrative Court

Barbara Duka was an employee of Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services. The SEC contended that Duka loosened S&P’s methodology for rating commercial mortgage-backed securities to help the company generate ratings business from...more

NYSE Proposes to Amend Material News Policy Again

In 2015 the NYSE amended its policy with respect to material news releases. One of the amendments was to include advisory text in Section 202.06 of the Listed Companies Manual requesting that listed companies intending to...more

Preliminary Planning for the 2018 Proxy Season

Rule 14a-21(b) requires a say-on-pay frequency vote every six years. Many issuers included a frequency vote in their 2017 proxy because they were subject to the initial rules when they became effective for shareholders’...more

SEC Inspector General Concludes Acting Chairman Piwowar’s Actions Were Lawful

In an investigation conducted at the request of four Senators, the SEC Inspector General concluded “we do not find that Commissioner Piwowar’s actions as Acting Chairman violated any of the laws currently governing the SEC...more

T+2 Settlement for Securities Transactions Takes Effect September 5, 2017

On September 5, 2017, a new SEC rule will take effect that shortens the standard settlement cycle for most broker-dealer transactions from three business days after the trade date, known as T+3, to two business days after the...more

Beginning September 1, SEC Requires Hyperlinking of Exhibits

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has adopted rules which will require public companies to include a hyperlink to each exhibit identified in an exhibit index in certain SEC filings, subject to limited...more

SEC Staff Updates Revenue Recognition Guidance for New Standard

The SEC’s Office of the Chief Accountant and Division of Corporation Finance released Staff Accounting Bulletin (SAB) No. 116 that brings existing SEC staff guidance into conformity with the Financial Accounting Standard...more

SEC Approves NYSE Rule Change Regarding Dividend Notification Requirements

The SEC has approved a change to the NYSE’s rules which requires listed companies to provide dividend notifications to the Exchange at least 10 minutes prior to disseminating them publicly when the notification is made...more

Minnesota Supreme Court Rejects Delaware Test for Direct Versus Derivative Action

In a case arising out of the inversion transaction where Medtronic merged with Coviden, the Minnesota Supreme Court spoke on the proper test of determining when an action is derivative or direct in In re Medtronic, Inc....more

SEC Charges Chief Compliance Officer for Failure to Verify Information

David I. Osunkwo was a principal at Strategic Consulting Advisors, LLC, or SC Consulting. SC Consulting offered compliance consulting and CCO services to two SEC registered investment adviser firms under common control, Aegis...more

Court Decision May Slow SEC Approval of SRO Rules

The SEC must generally approve rules and rule changes by self-regulatory organizations, which are referred to as SROs. According to this SEC web page, there are 37 active SROs. The volume of rule filings submitted for...more

Another Working Capital Claim Fails in Delaware Because of Liability Limitations

In Chicago Bridge & Iron Co. N.V. v. Westinghouse Electric Co. LLC, the Delaware Court of Chancery declined to permit the purchaser of a business to recover a working capital shortfall as a result of a purchase price...more

Court Considers Fiduciary Duties in Merger under Minnesota Law

The United States District Court for the District of Minnesota considered the application of the fiduciary duties of directors in the context of a merger under the Minnesota Business Corporation Act. The case, Lusk et al v....more

Survey of 2016 Conflict Minerals Filings Released

Development International has released its annual survey of conflict minerals reports for the 2016 reporting period which were filed in 2017. Despite the SEC’s no action position which relaxed conflict minerals reporting...more

Fed Seeks Comment on Corporate Governance Proposal for Financial Institutions

In June, Treasury issued a report noting that it believes duties imposed on bank boards are too voluminous, lack appropriate tailoring, and undermine the important distinction between the role of management and that of boards...more

ISS Releases 2018 Policy Survey

As is usual in the doldrums of summer, ISS has released its 2018 policy survey which generally foreshadows changes to ISS’ voting policies. In prior years, not everything on the survey resulted in a new voting policy. ...more

OCC Seeks Comment on Volcker Rule to Implement Treasury Recommendations

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency is seeking comment to assist in determining how the final rule implementing section 13 of the Bank Holding Company Act, which is referred to as the Volcker Rule, could be revised...more

Delaware Supreme Court Rejects Presumption that Deal Price is Best Estimate of Fair Value; Private Equity Buyer’s Price Deserves...

In DFC Global Corp. v Muirfield Value Partners, L.P. et al, the Delaware Supreme Court declined to adopt a presumption that in an arm’s length merger the deal price is the best estimate of fair value for purposes of an...more

A Review of Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs)

Given the SEC’s investigative report on initial coin offerings, I thought it would be interesting to review a small sample to see what else is really out there. I turned to coinmarketcap.com for information. In many cases the...more

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