Throughout the years, much has been written about disclosure overload driven by securities and accounting rules, including reports by auditors and scholarly research. From time to time, even Securities and Exchange Commissioners have been known to discuss the perils of disclosure overload. One such Commissioner is Troy A. Paredes.
In his comments before the annual SEC Speaks in 2013 conference held on February 22, 2013, SEC Commissioner Paredes once again discussed his concerns about overloading the investing public with too much information. In summarizing his concerns about over-disclosure, Commissioner Paredes offered the following suggestion: “In fashioning the disclosure regime at the core of the federal securities laws, we must account for the fact that too much disclosure, particularly when it is too complex, can be counterproductive. . . . It would be better for investors to be provided with shorter, more manageable SEC filings, for example, rather than the lengthy documents they receive today.” If you listen carefully, I think you may be able to hear a collective cheer of approval from corporate America.
For those that are interested, Commissioner Paredes made similar remarks in October 2011 while presenting the A.A. Sommer, Jr. Lecture on Corporate, Securities and Financial Law at Fordham University School of Law.