At a recent conference, Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler gave wide-ranging remarks addressing market structure issues, LIBOR and other rates, and the Commission's regulatory agenda.

Addressing regulatory initiatives relating to public company disclosures, Chair Gensler noted he has asked the Staff to put together recommendations on mandatory company disclosures on climate risk and human capital.  He also noted that investors would like disclosures that are consistent and that allow them to make comparisons among companies.  The Chair noted he has asked for specific recommendations relating to governance, strategy, and risk management related to climate risk, as well as a range of specific metrics, such as greenhouse gas emissions, to determine those which are most relevant to investors.  The Chair pointed to the over 400 comment letters the Commission has received regarding climate change disclosure.  He noted that he has asked the Staff, as well, to consider how funds that purport to focus on ESG are carrying out their investment objectives.  On human capital disclosures, the Chair recognized that the Staff is considering a number of possible metrics including workforce turnover, skills and development training, compensation, benefits, and workforce demographics including diversity, and health and safety.

Chair Gensler also discussed the Commission's plans for modernizing the rules related to ownership reporting.  He noted that the rules relating to reporting beneficial ownership have not been updated since the late 1960s and connected this to the Archegos collapse, which may be tenuous.  In any event, he indicated that revisions to the Section 13 and Section 16 ownership reporting rules are contemplated, as well as updates to reporting of derivatives positions and greater transparency relating to short selling activity.

See the text of his complete remarks  here.

Visit us at

Mayer Brown is a global legal services provider comprising legal practices that are separate entities (the "Mayer Brown Practices"). The Mayer Brown Practices are: Mayer Brown LLP and Mayer Brown Europe – Brussels LLP, both limited liability partnerships established in Illinois USA; Mayer Brown International LLP, a limited liability partnership incorporated in England and Wales (authorized and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and registered in England and Wales number OC 303359); Mayer Brown, a SELAS established in France; Mayer Brown JSM, a Hong Kong partnership and its associated entities in Asia; and Tauil & Chequer Advogados, a Brazilian law partnership with which Mayer Brown is associated. "Mayer Brown" and the Mayer Brown logo are the trademarks of the Mayer Brown Practices in their respective jurisdictions.

© Copyright 2020. The Mayer Brown Practices. All rights reserved.

This Mayer Brown article provides information and comments on legal issues and developments of interest. The foregoing is not a comprehensive treatment of the subject matter covered and is not intended to provide legal advice. Readers should seek specific legal advice before taking any action with respect to the matters discussed herein.