SEC regulatory compliance and reporting

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

Beswick: “Change fatigue” a barrier to IFRS in U.S.

The first questioner SEC Chief Accountant Paul Beswick faced Thursday said the Egyptians built the pyramids more quickly than the SEC has decided on IFRS. Beswick, speaking at the 12th annual Baruch College financial reporting conference in New York City, did not seem amused. “I’ll be waiting for your comment

New SEC rules aim to prevent identity theft

The SEC on Wednesday adopted rules jointly with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) that require broker-dealers, mutual funds, investment advisers, and certain other entities regulated by the SEC to adopt programs to prevent identity theft. SEC Chairman Mary Jo White, who was sworn in Wednesday, cast a vote in

Senate confirms ex-prosecutor White as SEC chairman

The Senate on Monday confirmed the nomination of Mary Jo White as chairman of the SEC. White, a former prosecutor who was the first woman to hold the venerated position of U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, brings a pedigree that could raise the SEC’s reputation for

SEC describes how social media can be used to distribute company info

U.S. public companies can use social media to make company announcements as long as they inform investors of the channels they will use to distribute the information, according to a new pronouncement by the SEC. The SEC on Tuesday released a report that makes it clear that companies can use

SEC names Beswick to chief accountant post

Paul Beswick recently confessed that he enjoys reading about the evolution of accounting standards throughout history. Now Beswick has a chance to make his own historical mark as chief accountant of the SEC. On Friday, the SEC announced that Beswick, who had been serving as acting chief accountant since James

Build a strong team to comply with conflict minerals rule

There is no mistaking the effect that a new regulation regarding conflict minerals will have on manufacturers and their suppliers. Tracing the commonly used minerals of tin, tungsten, tantalum, and gold through intricate global supply chain networks will be no easy task. “This is one of the most complex compliance

Nine tips for effective MD&A reporting

Deciding what to include in the management discussion and analysis (MD&A) section of a company’s financial report seldom is an easy task. Although the SEC issued guidance regarding MD&A, a fair amount of judgment is required. Obeying MD&A guidance is a case of complying with the spirit of a rule

SEC to study what information should be required in broader financial reporting

The SEC plans to study the issue of what information should be required in the financial reporting package outside the financial statements—an examination aimed at providing investors the right information in the right places while preventing overlap in demands on preparers. “We intend to initially focus on whether the issue

SEC Chairman Schapiro to step down; Walter designated as replacement

SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro, who has led the agency’s response to the financial crisis, announced Monday that she will step down Dec. 14. President Barack Obama designated Elisse Walter, a current SEC commissioner, as chairman upon Schapiro’s departure. Walter can serve without Senate approval through December 2013 because the Senate

Hot tips: SEC fields 3,000 whistleblower complaints in 12 months

Roughly 3,000 tips on alleged wrongdoing were passed on to the SEC in the first full fiscal year of a new whistleblower program. Tips came from all 50 states and 49 countries, according to an annual report on the program for the fiscal year that ended in September. The program

IFRS Foundation report says SEC’s concerns can be overcome

Three months ago, the SEC staff had its say on IFRS. Now the IFRS Foundation is providing its own analysis. The IFRS Foundation on Tuesday released a detailed, 84-page response to the SEC’s exhaustive, 127-page report on IFRS, which was released in July. The SEC’s report outlined concerns it had

Still in flux: Future of IFRS in U.S. remains unclear after SEC report

The future of international accounting standards for U.S. public companies remains uncertain after the release in July of a long-anticipated SEC analysis of IFRS. In a 127-page report released on the final day of Chief Accountant James Kroeker’s tenure, the SEC staff said the global financial reporting community considers the

Highly scrutinized SEC conflict mineral regs. include new audit requirement

The SEC on Wednesday approved disclosure rules designed to increase transparency around companies’ use of so-called “conflict minerals” and payments to governments for access to natural resources. The rules, advocated by certain human rights groups, will implement two sections of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of

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Using drones to enhance audits

Hermann Sidhu, CPA, global assurance digital leader at EY, walks us through EY’s exciting new project to use drones to help audit large warehouses and outdoor inventories.