The SEC had a breakthrough day last week when both Commissioner Luis Aguilar and Investor Advocate Rick Fleming spoke out in favor of data transparency.
Speaking at the agency's annual SEC Speaks conference, Fleming condemned Rep. Robert Hurt's proposal
to require the SEC to stop collecting searchable XBRL data from most public companies and regress to non-searchable documents. At the same conference, Aguilar voiced support for searchable disclosure data.
Mr. Fleming, who will deliver a plenary address at our Coalition's Financial Regulation Summit
, said, "[The Hurt proposal] would create an exemption from the XBRL filing requirements for Emerging Growth Companies and other small companies, which some have estimated would exclude more than 60 percent of all public companies. If passed by the Senate and signed into law, I believe this bill would seriously impede the ability of the SEC to bring disclosure into the 21st Century. If Congressional action is needed, it should be used to press the SEC to move forward in its efforts to make disclosure more accessible and useful for investors. Cost to issuers is a legitimate concern, but I think we can safely predict that smart people will predict ways to bring those costs down significantly, particularly if the SEC moves forward with Inline XBRL."
Mr. Fleming's speech is available here
Additionally, Commissioner Luis Aguilar voiced his view publicly, for the first time, that the agency should adopt structured data formats.
Commissioner Aguilar endorsed the SEC Investor Advisory Committee’s 2013 recommendation
to have issuers provide information in an interactive data format. The Investor Advisory Committee, a formal advisory body established in 2010 by the Dodd-Frank financial reform, recommended that the SEC adopt machine-readable data tagging formats, such as XBRL, for all the information it collects under the securities laws.
Commissioner Aguilar’s speech is available here
The Coalition and our members, who have worked tirelessly to provide SEC officials with the information they need to support the agency’s needed transformation from documents to searchable data, supported these moments.
We will continue to push for the move from documents to data in financial regulation, March 24 at Union Market in Washington, D.C. during the Financial Regulation Summit
! Get your tickets here