SEC regulatory compliance and reporting

11 suggestions for making corporate disclosures more effective

Better search and visualization capabilities, more discussion of company strategy, and ranking of risk factors would make corporate financial reporting more useful to investors, according to a report released Thursday. Prepared with the help of a broad spectrum of experts, the report provides recommendations for improving the effectiveness of corporate

Department of Commerce hasn’t met conflict minerals obligations, GAO says

Although U.S. public companies were required to file their first conflict minerals disclosures earlier this month, a new government report shows that the U.S. Department of Commerce has not met its obligations with regard to new conflict minerals regulations. The department failed to meet a January 2013 deadline to compile

Portions of conflict minerals rule stayed by SEC

Companies will not have to explicitly declare whether their products contain minerals that originated in mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo or its neighboring countries, according to the SEC. The SEC issued an order Friday staying the effective date for compliance with portions of its conflict minerals rule that

SEC slightly amends conflict minerals reporting requirements

The SEC has amended its conflict minerals reporting requirements after an appeals court struck down part of the rule. Under the conflict minerals rule, issuers are required to attempt to determine whether the gold, tantalum, tin, and tungsten used in their products originated in mines operated by warlords in the

Two SEC commissioners call for stay of conflict minerals rule

Two SEC commissioners issued a statement Monday calling for the commission to stay its conflict minerals rule and impose no further regulatory obligations related to the rule until litigation surrounding the rule is completed. Commissioners Daniel Gallagher and Michael Piwowar said marching ahead with a rule that might be invalidated

New conflict minerals guidance available

Conflict minerals reporting and auditing is a newly emerging practice, as May 31 is the submission date required by the SEC for the first reports of issuers’ efforts to track the gold, tantalum, tin, and tungsten in their supply chains. The AICPA Conflict Minerals Task Force has developed new nonauthoritative

Court ruling doesn’t stop conflict minerals compliance work

Despite an appellate court opinion that struck down a disclosure requirement in the SEC’s new conflict minerals rule, experts say companies need to continue tracing the origins of the gold, tantalum, tin, and tungsten in their supply chains and preparing to file their disclosures. The SEC’s conflict minerals rule was

How preparers can cut down on disclosures in financial reports

Changes to disclosure requirements are on the horizon as the SEC ponders updating its rules in an effort to make information more useful for investors. The commission is reviewing specific sections of regulations S-K and S-X to see if requirements can be updated, SEC Division of Corporation Finance Director Keith

Companies lagging in conflict minerals process

Conflict minerals reporting may be a significant challenge for executives this spring as many companies are just in the early stages of compliance exercises as the May 31 SEC filing deadline approaches, according to a report released Wednesday. The SEC’s new conflict minerals rule grew out of the Dodd-Frank Wall

Unnecessary disclosures targeted by SEC

A targeted, step-by-step approach is the best way for the SEC to review and overhaul its financial disclosure requirements under securities laws, SEC Commissioner Daniel Gallagher said Monday. In a speech at the Forum for Corporate Directors in California, Gallagher said he hopes the SEC can “make real headway” in

SEC plans to consider whether global standards are achievable

The SEC plans to consider whether a single set of high-quality global accounting standards is achievable, according to one initiative described in a draft of the commission’s strategic plan for 2014 to 2018. An initiative described on page 8 of the 39-page document, which was released Monday, says the SEC

SEC delays municipal adviser rule compliance date

Compliance with the SEC’s final municipal adviser registration rules will not be required until July 1, 2014, the commission announced Monday. The SEC extended the date for compliance to give market participants additional time to analyze, implement, and comply with the final rules. The rules had been scheduled to go

New regulations among SEC’s 2014 examination priorities

Issues posed by new rules and regulations will be among the issues the SEC scrutinizes most closely in 2014 in its examination of issues at financial institutions reviewed under the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations’ National Examination Program. The SEC on Thursday announced its examination priorities for 2014, which

SEC to update rules for corporate disclosures

SEC Chairman Mary Jo White directed the commission’s staff to develop recommendations for updating the rules for what a company must disclose in its public filings, according to an SEC news release. The SEC staff issued a report to Congress on Friday recommending that the commission’s disclosure requirements be reevaluated

SEC proposal aims to aid small businesses

Rules proposed Wednesday by the SEC would build upon the Regulation A exemption with the intention of increasing smaller companies’ access to capital. The proposed rules would implement part of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act of 2012, P.L. 112-106, by making the Regulation A exemption more useful to

What accounting fraud risk factors will attract SEC’s attention?

Rising stock prices may be correlated with increased risk of financial reporting fraud, the SEC’s David Woodcock said this week, and that creates urgency for him and the new task force he chairs at the agency. Woodcock chairs the SEC Financial Reporting and Audit Task Force, which was unveiled in

FASB releases proposed 2014 U.S. GAAP taxonomy

FASB released its proposed 2014 U.S. GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy on Friday. The taxonomy consists of a list of computer-readable financial reporting labels coded in XBRL. The proposal contains updates for accounting standards and other recommended improvements to the official taxonomy, which is used by public issuers registered with the

GAO advises SEC to require disclosure of auditor attestation of ICFR

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is recommending that the SEC consider requiring public companies to disclose whether they obtained an auditor attestation of their internal controls over financial reporting (ICFR). In a report to congressional committees, the GAO said attestation reports increase investor confidence. Requiring disclosure of whether a

Fraud in financial reporting, auditing among targets of new SEC initiatives

Fraudulent financial reporting and auditing are among the targets of three new Division of Enforcement initiatives the SEC announced Tuesday in its efforts to detect and investigate fraud and misconduct that harm investors. The new Financial Reporting and Audit Task Force will be dedicated to detecting fraudulent or improper financial

AICPA provides guidance on auditing conflict minerals reports

Recently implemented federal rules on disclosure of conflict minerals have mandated new audit requirements for some U.S. issuers. The AICPA Conflict Minerals Resources webpage provides background and other useful information about the use of conflict minerals, which are gold, tantalum, tin, and tungsten. In addition, new Questions and Answers have

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6 key areas of change for accountants and auditors

New accounting standards on revenue recognition, leases, and credit losses present implementation challenges. This independently-written report identifies the hurdles that accounting professionals face and provides tips for overcoming the challenges.

PODCAST

How tax reform will impact individual taxpayers

Amy Wang, a CPA who is a senior technical manager for tax advocacy at the AICPA, answers to some of the most common questions on how the new tax reform law will impact individual taxpayers.