Disclosure Requirements

On July 22, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced the adoption of amendments (the Amendments) to the SEC’s rules governing proxy solicitations that are intended to “facilitate the ability of those who use proxy voting advice — investors and others who vote on investors’ behalf — to make informed voting decisions without imposing undue costs or delays that could adversely affect the timely provision of proxy voting advice.” The Amendments represent a modified version of the amendments the SEC originally proposed in November 2019, which were previously discussed in the November 8, 2019 edition of Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest.
Continue Reading SEC Adopts Amendments and Issues Guidance Related to Proxy Voting Advice

On June 23, the Division of Corporation Finance (the Division) of the Securities and Exchange Commission issued CF Disclosure Guidance: Topic No. 9A (Topic 9A) providing additional disclosure considerations for public reporting companies regarding operations, liquidity and capital resources disclosures in light of business and market disruptions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Topic 9A supplements CF Disclosure Guidance Topic No. 9 issued by the Division on March 25, 2020 and discussed in Katten’s advisory “COVID-19 Impact on Public Disclosure on SEC Reporting Companies.”
Continue Reading SEC Division of Corporation Finance Issues Additional Disclosure Guidance Related to COVID-19 Pandemic

On May 21, the Securities and Exchange Commission adopted final rules related to the financial disclosure requirements for acquisitions and dispositions of businesses (i.e., M&A transactions). The SEC’s release adopting the final rules is available here. These rules will be discussed in an upcoming edition of the Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission Divisions of Market Oversight (DMO), Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (DSIO), and Clearing and Risk (DCR) (together, the Divisions) issued CFTC Letter 20-17 to remind Designated Contract Markets (DCMs), Futures Commission Merchants (FCMs) and Derivatives Clearing Organizations (DCOs) of their obligations to prepare for extreme market volatility, low liquidity and possibly negative pricing for certain contracts. The Divisions issued the advisory in light of unusually high volatility and negative pricing experienced in the May 2020 West Texas Intermediate (WTI), Light Sweet Crude Oil Futures contract on April 20 (the penultimate day of trading and expiration of the contract), although the guidance also applies to trading in other commodities.
Continue Reading CFTC Staff Issues Advisory Addressing Current Market Conditions

National Futures Association (NFA) has provided limited relief to commodity trading advisors (CTAs) who are also registered investment advisers from compliance with certain portions of NFA Rule 2-29 “Communications with the Public and Promotional Material” and a related Interpretive Notice. Generally, CTAs presenting past performance in promotional materials are required to include performance net of all commissions, fees and expenses. With this relief, CTAs who are also registered as investment advisers with the Securities and Exchange Commission may present past performance to eligible contract participants (ECPs) on a gross basis in non-public one-on-one presentations, if the CTA:
Continue Reading NFA Published Amendments to Its Advertising Rules

On April 14, the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) published a final report on sustainable finance and the role of securities regulators and IOSCO (the Report).

In the Report, IOSCO provides an overview of the current sustainable finance initiatives taken by regulators and the industry. The Report also includes a detailed analysis of the most relevant environmental, social and governance related international initiatives, and third-party frameworks and standards.
Continue Reading ESG: IOSCO Publishes Report on Sustainable Finance and the Role of Securities Regulators and IOSCO

On April 8, Jay Clayton, the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and William Hinman, the Director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance, issued a public statement addressing disclosure considerations in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. The statement follows other guidance and regulatory relief that the SEC has issued in recent weeks as the pandemic has developed.
Continue Reading SEC Chairman and Division of Corporation Finance Director Issue Statement Further Addressing COVID-19 Related Disclosures

On March 25, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued an Order granting the application by the Financial Information Forum (FIF) and Securities Traders Association (STA) for a temporary exemption from certain requirements of Rule 606 of Regulation NMS under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, which requires broker-dealers to disclose certain information regarding the handling

On March 12, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) issued a public statement to note certain recommendations for EU financial market participants as a result of the impact and developments of COVID-19 (the Statement). ESMA’s recommendations include:
Continue Reading ESMA Recommendation to Financial Market Participants in Light of COVID-19

On February 24, the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) announced a change to the process firms should use to report short positions in UK-listed financial instruments under the Short Selling Regulation 2012 (SSR). The change was announced on an updated webpage, available here.
Continue Reading FCA Changes Short Selling Reporting Process