The Securities and Exchange Commission proposed amendments designed to modernize its information collection and analysis methods by, among other things, proposing that a number of filings be submitted to the Commission electronically on EDGAR using structured data where appropriate.
Under current rules, registrants are required to file or otherwise submit many Exchange Act forms, filings, or other submissions in paper form. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many submissions were made in electronic rather than paper form, which was generally well received.
As part of its efforts to modernize the methods by which it collects and analyzes information from registrants, the proposed amendments would require registrants to make these submissions to the Commission electronically.
“We live in a digital age. In 2023, one might think that all filings to the Commission already could be made electronically. That’s not yet true,” said SEC Chair Gary Gensler. “We have the important opportunity to require electronic filing for nearly all of the remaining paper filings required under the Exchange Act. I believe the proposal, if adopted, would save both registrants and the Commission time and resources.”
Specifically, the proposed amendments would require the electronic filing, submission, or posting of certain forms, filings, and other submissions that national securities exchanges, national securities associations, clearing agencies, broker-dealers, security-based swap dealers, and major security-based swap participants make with the Commission.
The proposed amendments would also make certain amendments regarding the Financial and Operational Combined Uniform Single (“FOCUS”) Report to harmonize it with other rules, make technical corrections, and provide clarifications. In addition, the proposed amendments would require withdrawal of notices filed in connection with an exception to counting certain dealing transactions toward determining whether a person is a security-based swap dealer in specified circumstances.
The public comment period will remain open for 30 days after publication in the Federal Register or until May 22, 2023, whichever is later.