Chapter 3SEC Reporting: The Key Rules

Learning objectives

  • Determine the relationships among Regulations S-X and S-K, the Financial Reporting Releases (FRRs), the Accounting and Auditing Enforcement Releases (AAERs), the Staff Accounting Bulletins (SABs), the Staff Legal Bulletins (SLBs), and other sources of research information applicable to public companies.
  • Identify reporting issues for early resolution.
  • Identify how to use the SEC’s rules and regulations and other technical resources to solve reporting problems.

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Introduction

Upon entering the public reporting arena, accountants are exposed to new rules and requirements that often are foreign to them. The most obvious difference is the legal format of the SEC’s rules and regulations concerning financial disclosures, nonfinancial disclosures, and application of accounting principles. The extensive use of citations, footnotes, and other cross-referencing techniques makes researching issues difficult. The next sobering discovery is the number of different levels of rules, regulations, and interpretations. Finally, subtle and not-so-subtle differences between the SEC’s requirements and generally accepted accounting principles become apparent. A natural reaction is to question where ...

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