An Opportunity To Improve Disclosure
October 27, 2014
The SEC has recently undertaken a review of its principal regulations for periodic reporting by publicly traded companies, in response to claims that the reporting process has become overly burdensome and that investors are blinded by “disclosure overload” that makes it difficult to discern the important facts within a mass of detail. If the regulations were re-written today, they would undoubtedly focus on some different issues. But the key to more effective disclosure lies in better presentation. Companies can (and sometimes do) present information in easy-to-understand formats, and they should be encouraged to do so. In addition, the SEC has a chance to make its website more user-friendly for investors, and it should seize this opportunity to do so.