Investors’ Confidence in U.S. Markets Still High
This year’s Center for Audit Quality (“CAQ”) survey continues to reflect U.S. retail investors’ strong confidence in the nation’s capital markets. According to the 2015 Main Street Investor Survey, nearly three-fourths (73 percent) of Main Street investors have confidence in U.S. markets. Confidence levels hold steady from 2014 and are up 12 percent comparative to the post-financial crisis low. Reasons contributing to investors’ high confidence were an overall positive outlook of the U.S. market system, recent good returns on personal investments, and the historical stability of the nation’s markets. Other notable survey findings were investors continuing to have high confidence. Read More.
FASB Proposal Addresses Private Company Accounting Alternatives
The Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) has released a proposal to make adoption of special accounting alternatives easier for private companies if they missed the alternative standards’ effective dates. Issued as Proposed Accounting Standards Update (ASU) No. PCC-15-01, Intangibles—Goodwill and Other (Topic 350) Business Combinations (Topic 805) Consolidation (Topic 810) Derivatives and Hedging (Topic 815) Effective Date and Transition Guidance a proposal of the Private Company Council, the guidance would offer a one-time option for private companies to choose an accounting alternative without requiring the completion of a “preferability assessment” test in U.S. GAAP. The proposed amendments would also erase. Read More.
Corp Fin Staff Issues Updates to Compliance and Disclosure Interpretations
Staff members in the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Corporation Finance (Corp Fin) have published updates to the Compliance and Disclosure Interpretations (C&DIs) for Regulation AB and Related Rules, Section 311.02 . The updated C&DIs include Corp Fin’s interpretations of the provisions adopted under Regulation AB, and the Securities Act and Exchange Act. Additionally, interpretations issued in the Regulation AB Manual of Publicly Available Telephone Interpretations have been replaced by the CD&Is, as well as revised in some instances.
Document on U.S. Usage of IFRS Could Be Issued Soon
Despite the use of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) drawing little interest in the U.S., Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) Chief Accountant James Schnurr is still moving forward with issuing a document on the matter for public comment. The paper is likely to request comments about the possibility of allowing U.S. companies to voluntarily provide supplemental IFRS financial information either in the notes or MD&A. Reaffirming his stance, Schnurr said last week that the SEC wants the international standards to be used more widely throughout the U.S. without a heavy increase in costs to prepare financial statements and agency filings.. Read More.
PCAOB’s Reorganization of Auditing Standards Receives SEC Approval
The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently approved its proposed rules for implementing the reorganization of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board’s (“PCAOB”; “the Board”) auditing standards and related amendments to the Board’s rules, attestation, quality control, and ethics and independence standards. The restructuring of the PCAOB’s auditing standards aim to make the audit process easier for users. The amendments employ a topical system that incorporates the present interim and PCAOB’s auditing standards. Going forward, individual standards will be grouped into one of five categories: General Auditing Standards: Wide-ranging auditing principles, concepts, activities and communications. Audit Procedures: Planning and carrying. Read More.
SEC Eliminates Credit Rating References in Money Market Fund Rule and Form
The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has adopted amendments that remove references to credit ratings in money market fund Rule 2a-7 and the associated form money market funds use to disclose their portfolio holdings to the agency every month. The amendments eliminate the requirements of Rule 2a-7 which requires money market funds to invest solely in securities that have either received one of the two highest short-term credit ratings, or are of equal quality if the securities have no rating. Also removed is the provision requiring a money market fund to invest no less than 97 percent of its assets. Read More.