ABA Journal’s 10th Annual Blawg 100
On October 7, 2014, the SEC published a release instituting proceedings to determine whether to approve FINRA’s request to delete the rules related to, and the operations of, the OTC Bulletin Board quotation service. On June 27, 2014, FINRA quietly filed a proposed rule change with the SEC seeking to adopt rules relating to the quotation requirements for OTC equity services and to delete the rules relating to the OTCBB and thus cease its operations. Although the rule filing was published in the Federal Register, it garnered no attention in the small cap marketplace. Only one comment letter, from OTC Market Group, Inc. (“OTC Markets”) (i.e., the entity that owns and operates the inter-dealer quotation system known by its OTC Pink, OTCQB and OTCQX quotation tiers) was submitted in response to the filing.
The OTCBB has become increasingly irrelevant in the OTC marketplace for years. In October 2010, I wrote a blog titled
The Sale of Unregistered Securities Must Satisfy Form 8-K Filing Requirements In a 3(a)(10) Transaction
Introduction and Background
Recently the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has been taking action against public reporting companies for the failure to file a Form 8-K upon the completion of a transaction exempt under Section 3(a)(10) of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (“Securities Act”). The SEC has served a Wells notice on numerous companies for the failure to file such Form 8-K without any prior communication with such companies. Since enforcement actions for the failure to file a Form 8-K are very rare, it is my view that the SEC is concerned with the 3(a)(10) transaction itself.
A Wells notice, often referred to as a Wells letter, is a notice delivered by the SEC to persons and entities under investigation providing the opportunity to such persons and entities to present their position to the SEC prior to the commencement of an enforcement proceeding. A Wells letter gives notice of the SEC’s intended charges and enforcement recommendation and