Red flags for directors: SEC may take magnifying glass to disclosures involving significant judgments in COVID-19 era – Lexology

During a discussion of red flags that should draw directors’ attention, Ms. Stone noted that the SEC may take a magnifying glass to disclosures involving significant judgements and estimates, particularly in the current economic conditions. She quoted her former colleague Steven Peikin, previous Co-Director of the Division of Enforcement, who stated in a speech at a recent securities enforcement forum:

Recognizing that the economic impacts of any downturn may vary across different industries and sectors, the [SEC’s Coronavirus] Steering Committee has developed a systematic process to review public filings from issuers in highly-impacted industries, with a focus on identifying disclosures that appear to be significantly out of step with others in the same industry. We are also looking for disclosures, impairments, or valuations that may attempt to disguise previously undisclosed problems or weaknesses as coronavirus-related.

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