Bradley attorney Rod Kanter was quoted in The Bond Buyer on the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) disclosure concerns with the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board’s EMMA site, the official source for municipal securities data and disclosure documents. The SEC is concerned that issuers are being advised that the information they supply on EMMA is subject to more scrutiny under federal anti-fraud laws compared to other platforms. However, some think the concern seems unfounded as issuers are liable for all material they disclose despite the platform used to present it.
Currently, issuers are encouraged to put voluntary information on EMMA, said Kanter.
When issuers go to market to sell debt, they are focused on disclosure and anti-fraud provisions. However, when posting annual reports and other items on EMMA, officials are generally more focused on the continuing disclosure agreement requirement and may easily lose focus on anti-fraud issues, Kanter explained.
“I have not heard anyone say that filings on EMMA are going to be subject to great scrutiny from an anti-fraud perspective,” Kanter said. “That’s a new one for me, but I’ve been in many conversations with lawyers advising clients, saying hey remember when you’re filing on EMMA, you’re speaking to the market, so be careful about anti-fraud provisions.”
The article, “Lawyers, Issuers say SEC's Concern on Muni Disclosure is Mostly Unfounded,” first appeared in The Bond Buyer on August 2, 2019.