The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) voted in open meeting on October 11, 2017 to propose amendments to its regulations to modernize, streamline and simplify disclosure requirements for public companies, investment companies and investment advisers.
The SEC’s action implements a mandate under the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act enacted by Congress in December 2015. Building on the SEC’s ongoing Disclosure Effectiveness Initiative, the FAST Act directed the SEC to determine how to modernize and simplify the requirements of Regulation S-K to reduce the costs and burdens on issuers while still providing all material information. As required by the FAST Act, the staff of the SEC issued its Report on Modernization and Simplification of Regulation S-K in November 2016. The amendments to Regulation S-K currently proposed by the SEC are based on, and largely implement, the recommendations in that report, with some modification. In addition to amending Regulation S-K, the SEC proposed to make parallel amendments to several rules and forms applicable to investment companies and investment advisers to provide for a consistent set of rules for incorporation by reference and hyperlinking.