Sarbanes-Oxley Securities & Exchange Commission

News & Analysis as of

Blog: SEC Proposes To Allow More Companies To Qualify As Smaller Reporting Companies

Without holding an open meeting, the SEC has proposed changes to the definition of a “smaller reporting company” that would raise the financial cap from “less than $75 million” in public float to “less than $250 million,”...more

Blog: Discussion Draft of the Financial CHOICE Act

A discussion draft for the Financial CHOICE Act is now publicly available. Many of the provisions of interest from a corporate standpoint are in Title IV—Capital Markets Improvements and Title X—Unleashing Opportunities for...more

SEC Proposes Increasing Threshold to Qualify as a Smaller Reporting Company

The SEC has proposed amendments that would increase the financial thresholds in the “smaller reporting company” definition. The proposal to update the definition would expand the number of companies that qualify as smaller...more

SEC Confirms That Whistleblowers Will Continue to Carry a Baton in Its Race to Enforce SOX

This summer, viewers of the Olympics in Brazil will watch track and field events, in which the members of each team will carry a baton for a leg of the race in their collective effort to win the gold. In case there remained...more

Blog: The Financial CHOICE Act Would Dismantle A Whole Lot More In Dodd-Frank Than Just Financial Regulation

by Cydney Posner There has been a fair amount of press regarding the Financial CHOICE Act, a new bill sponsored by Jeb Hensarling, Chair of the House Financial Services Committee. The actual bill has not yet been released,...more

Whistleblowers: No Reasonable Belief of Violation, No Protection

The SEC has been touting the large cash awards it has been handing out to whistleblowers. The agency views whistleblowers as a key source of potential information about wrong-doing which can give them tips and facilitate...more

The Evolution of Compliance: Structural Changes Which Led to Compliance 2.0

If there was one theme from Compliance Week 2016 it was the continued evolution of the Chief Compliance Officer (CCO) role and the compliance profession. Long gone are the days when someone is sent over from a legal...more

Joe Howell on the PCAOB, Audits and Compliance – Part IV

This week I have been exploring the Public Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) with Joe Howell, an Executive Vice President (EVP) with Workiva Inc. We have considered how some of the issues addressed by the PCAOB directly...more

Joe Howell on the PCAOB, Audits and Compliance – Part III

Today, I continue my exploration with Joe Howell about the Public Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), its scrutiny of public company auditors and how its work impacts the corporate compliance function. Yesterday, I ended with...more

Joe Howell on the PCAOB, Audits and Compliance – Part I

I recently had the chance to visit with Joe Howell, the Executive Vice President (EVP) of Workiva LLC. Howell has been the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of a number of public companies, mostly in the technology space, and...more

SEC Brings Two Financial Fraud Actions

Financial fraud has long been a staple of SEC enforcement. In the wake of the market crisis the agency has attempted to once again focus on the area creating, for example, a financial fraud task force two years ago. Last...more

SEC Prevails At Trial Over Former Professional Athlete

Sometimes is does not pay to be the last man standing – particularly in a Commission enforcement action. Such was the fate of former NFL player and Olympic athlete Willie Gault. SEC v. Heart Tronics, Inc., Case No....more

Internal Controls Enforcement: Hoisting Yourself on Your Own Petard

William Shakespeare’s Hamlet included this often used  phrase – hoist with his own petard (a small bomb). Shakespeare never knew that his eloquence would apply to today’s SEC enforcement of internal controls. The FCPA...more

A Review of Recent Whistleblower Developments

SEC Awards Bounty to Whistleblower, But Offsets Award for a Judgment Against the Whistleblower - The extent to which the SEC would reward whistleblowers, who themselves engaged in wrongdoing, has been the subject of...more

Director and Executive Compensation Remains a Hot Topic for 2016

A series of recent Delaware Chancery Court and Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) decisions—coupled with anticipated SEC action to finalize the three remaining Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act...more

Top 10 Financial Institution Considerations for 2016: #2 – Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering and OFAC Compliance

In our initial article announcing our top 10 considerations for financial institutions in 2016, our second consideration was Bank Secrecy Act/anti-money laundering (BSA/AML) and OFAC compliance in 2016. Compliance with the...more

The Whistleblower Augmented Reward and Non-Retaliation Act of 2016

Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) and Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) recently introduced the Whistleblower Augmented Reward and Non-Retaliation Act of 2016 (“WARN Act”), which aims to bolster whistleblower protections under both...more

Five Employment Law Compliance Topics of Interest to Financial Services Industry Employers

Employers in the financial services industry are faced with an escalating number of employment law compliance challenges, but the news is not all bad. For example, although pleading standards for Sarbanes-Oxley Act (“SOX”)...more

SEC Brings $11,000 SOX Clawback Action

The SEC alleges that Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc. misstated its revenue. The SEC recently brought a settled enforcement action against its former CFO. The SEC alleges the CFO received bonuses during the 12-month periods...more

Enforcement Heats Up at the SEC

Andrew Ceresney, Director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement, gave the keynote address at last week’s Directors Forum 2016 in San Diego. In his speech, Mr. Ceresney made several points worth highlighting. First of all,...more

JOBS Act Quick Start – A Brief Overview of the JOBS Act, 2016 Update

Many market participants were taken by surprise by the enactment of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act. The JOBS Act, HR 3606, was passed by the United States House of Representatives on March 8, 2012. On March...more

The SEC And Financial Fraud

Financial fraud was a staple of SEC enforcement for years. Complex financial fraud cases in which the “books were cooked” to make earnings guidance, increase bonuses or for other reasons were the daily grist of SEC...more

"Auditors Must Beware the Consequences of Settling SEC Enforcement Actions"

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) launched “Operation Broken Gate” in October 2013 to hold accountable those auditors who have intentionally or negligently violated professional auditing or accounting standards....more

A Review of Recent Whistleblower Developments

Several important matters related to whistleblower actions occurred toward the close of 2015, including the first instance of a director being held individually liable for retaliation, a dismissal of the Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy...more

Court Tosses Dodd-Frank Retaliation Claim – No Proof of Whistleblowing or Retaliation

In Yang v. Navigators Group, Inc., the Southern District of New York granted summary judgment for the defendant on a dual pronged complaint claiming unlawful retaliation under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the Dodd-Frank Act. ...more

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