NEW YORK: Rumors of change in SEC disclosure rules may be correct,
but not the outright demise of Reg FD postulated in some circles.
In a recent speech, SEC chairman Harvey Pitt said disclosure every
quarter implies information is static, not dynamic. He said the system
should be reconsidered in light of internet-available instantaneous
communication, which could allow companies to supplement periodic
disclosure with Pitt's new concept of continuous disclosure.
"In that type of system," Pitt explained, "public companies might be
required ... to disclose unquestionably material information when it
arises and becomes available, even if the information is learned before
the next-scheduled periodic report is due to be filed."
Business Week called Pitt's suggestions "potentially the biggest
shake-up in securities regulation since the SEC's birth in the depths of
The SEC would not comment to PRWeek on the potential impact to investor
relations if the changes are instituted. Lou Thompson, president and CEO
of the National Investor Relations Institute said the concept opens a
whole range of disclosure possibilities.
"Continuous disclosure would potentially increase the level of
disclosure, which means an enhanced role for IR," said Thompson.