On June 1, 2021, SEC Chair Gary Gensler and the SEC Division of Corporation Finance issued statements making it clear that the SEC would not be enforcing the 2020 amendments to certain rules governing proxy advisory firms or the SEC guidance on the new rules.
In particular, in July 2020 the SEC adopted amendments to change the definition of “solicitation” in Exchange Act Rule 14a-1(l) to specifically include proxy advice subject to certain exceptions, provide additional examples for compliance with the anti-fraud provisions in Rule 14a-9 and amended Rule 14a-2(b) to specifically exempt proxy voting advice businesses from the filing and information requirements of the federal proxy rules. On the same day, the SEC issued updated guidance on the new rules. See HERE for a discussion on the new rules and related guidance.
Like all rules and guidance related to the proxy process, the amendments were controversial with views generally falling along partisan lines. On June 1, 2021, Chair
In December 2019, the SEC Division of Corporation Finance issued CF Disclosure Guidance: Topic No. 8 providing guidance related to the disclosure of intellectual property and technology risks associated with international business operations.
The global and technologically interconnected nature of today’s business environment exposes companies to a wide array of evolving risks, which they must individually examine to determine proper disclosures using a principles-based approach. A company is required to conduct a continuing analysis on the materiality of risks in the ever-changing technological landscape to ensure proper reporting of risks. To assist management in making these determinations, the SEC has issued additional guidance.
The guidance, which is grounded in materiality and a principles-based approach, is meant to supplement prior guidance on technology and cybersecurity matters including the February 2018 SEC statement on public company cybersecurity disclosures (see my blog HERE); Director Hinman’s speech at the 18th Annual Institute on Securities Regulation in Europe in March, 2019; the SEC
As I wrote this blog I continued to have no power at my home after one week, though thankfully it has returned by publication date. Living in South Florida, our firm has felt and seen the devastating impact of Hurricane Irma on the state and send our thoughts and wishes to all affected by both Irma and Hurricane Harvey in Texas.
On September 13, 2017, the SEC issued a press release confirming that it is closely monitoring the effects of both Irma and Harvey on the capital markets. In particular, the SEC is working to make sure that investors have access to their securities accounts and evaluating the need for extending filing deadlines for reporting companies. Furthermore, the SEC is watching for and will keep investors updated via alerts on storm-related scams.
Despite the announcement that the SEC is monitoring the markets and considering extending filing deadlines, no specific broad-based relief has been granted. As has been done historically, I