No-Action Letters

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Blog: Institutional Investors Speak Out On Proxy Access And Conflicting Proposals

Earlier this month, the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee devoted part of its agenda to the topic of proxy access and the much debated Rule 14a-8(i)(9), which permits companies to exclude shareholder proposals from their...more

SEC Timeout on Proxy Access Issue Has Wider Implications

On January 16, 2015, the SEC withdrew its December 1, 2014 no-action letter in which it concurred with the view of Whole Foods Market, Inc. that the company was entitled under SEC Rule 14a-8(i)(9) to exclude from its proxy...more

SEC’s Rule 14a-8 Volte-Face Is Pointlessly Outré But It Does Have Real World Ramifications

Readers may recall that last December Whole Foods Market, Inc. had secured the SEC staff’s concurrence in excluding a shareholder access proposal submitted by Jim McRitchie. Then, SEC Chair Mary Jo White directed the staff...more

SEC Staff Issues New Guidelines for Abbreviated Debt Tender Offers

On January 23, 2015, the staff of the Division of Corporation Finance of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued revised guidance as to when a debt tender offer may be open for fewer than 20 business days....more

In Case You Missed It - Interesting Items for Corporate Counsel - February 2015

It’s still the case that commentators have said nothing revelationary about “proxy access ,” the recent private-ordering push, and the SEC’s flip-floppery on its Whole Foods no-action letter. “Proxy access” is short hand for...more

SEC Issues New Debt Tender Offer Guidance

On January 23, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Corporate Finance issued a no-action letter (New Letter) that (1) substantially revises prior guidance relating to debt tender offers and (2) expands the...more

Expediting Debt Tender and Exchange Offers

In late January, the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance issued a no-action letter that significantly expedites non-investment grade debt security tender and exchange offers and eases certain other restrictions. With so...more

Flexibility for Debt Refinancings – New SEC No-Action Letter

The SEC staff issued a no-action letter recently that will allow some companies to refinance their debt using tender and exchange offers shorter than the 20 business days required in the tender offer rules. The letter extends...more

Trinity Wall Street Responds in Appeal of Exclusion of Shareholder Proposal

Currently before the Third Circuit is Trinity Wall Street v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. The case involves whether Wal-Mart can exclude a shareholder proposal under the “ordinary business exception” to Rule 14a-8. Trinity...more

Withdrawal of Whole Foods No-Action Letter Leaves a Hole in Proxy Access Proposal Defense

On January 16, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that, for the 2015 proxy season, the Division of Corporation Finance will not express any views as to whether a company may exclude a shareholder...more

SEC Issues Guidance for Shorter Debt Tender Offers

On January 23, 2015, the Staff of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) issued a no-action letter that allows certain tender offers for non-convertible debt securities to remain open for five business days,...more

SEC Staff Revises Guidance on Shortened Debt Tender Offers, Expands Guidance to Cover Tender Offers for High-Yield Debt and...

The staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission recently issued a no-action letter that substantially revises its long-standing guidance for shortened tender offers for non-convertible debt securities. The letter permits...more

CFTC Staff Issues No-Action Relief From Certain Financial Reporting Requirements Applicable to Introducing Brokers

On January 23, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (DSIO) issued a no-action letter regarding financial reporting requirements as they apply to foreign introducing...more

SEC Shortens Tender Offer Period for Issuers of Nonconvertible Debt

On January 23, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Staff issued a no-action letter that would allow issuers to conduct tender offers for their nonconvertible debt securities in a period of only five business...more

SEC Suspends Review of Conflicting Shareholder Proposal No-Action Requests

On January 16, 2015, the Division of Corporation Finance of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Staff”) announced that the Staff will express no views on no-action requests, arguing that shareholder proposals...more

New Five Business Day Timeline for Debt Tender or Exchange Offers

On January 23, 2015, the Staff of the US Securities and Exchange Commission issued a no-action letter (the “No-Action Letter”) providing that it would not recommend enforcement action with respect to a five business day...more

SEC Staff Will No Longer Issue No-Action Letters on Conflicting Shareholder Proposals During the 2015 Proxy Season

The staff of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Corporation Finance (the “SEC Staff”) recently announced that it would refuse to grant no-action relief during the 2015 proxy season to companies seeking...more

Shorter Tender Offer Period Permitted for Certain Securities

The SEC recently issued a no-action letter that significantly expands the scope of securities that are eligible for an abbreviated tender offer process. The SEC’s new position should allow for issuers to restructure their...more

Investment Management Update

SEC’s Focus in 2015 - On December 11, 2014, Mary Jo White, Chair of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), gave a speech at The New York Times DealBook Opportunities for Tomorrow Conference that...more

Amicus Briefs Pour in for Wal-Mart Shareholder Proposal Case

Amicus briefs are pouring in in favor of Wal-Mart in its appeal to the Third Circuit. Wal-Mart appealed the United States District of Delaware’s decision that denied Wal-Mart the right to exclude a shareholder proposal...more

SEC Eases Terms for 5-Day Debt Tender Offers

The SEC recently provided no-action relief for five-day tender offers. The new no-action letter eases requirements in the following areas: - The tender offer must be open for five business days rather than a seven to...more

SEC Reverses Course on Proxy Exclusions for Certain Shareholder Proposals

Much is being made of the January 16th statement by SEC Chair Mary Jo White regarding a company’s ability to exclude a shareholder proposal from its proxy statement based on Rule 14a-8(i)(9), which allows exclusion when a...more

The SEC’s Rule 14a-8 Process Just Became Even More Pointlessly Outré

Yesterday, Broc Romanek posted on SEC Chair Mary Jo White’s Friday surprise with respect the no-action letter request submitted by Whole Foods Market, Inc. Readers may recall that in December Whole Foods had obtained the...more

No More SEC No-Action Letters on Proxy Access Proposals

Responding to investor pressure, and pressure by shareholder proponents, the SEC Division of Corporation Finance issued this statement: “In light of Chair White’s direction to the staff to review Rule 14a-8(i)(9) and...more

Model Rule Exempting M&A Brokers Proposed by NASAA

The Broker-Dealer section of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) has proposed a model uniform state rule (the “Model Rule”) that would exempt parties that act only as deal brokers in M&A...more

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