A number of industry groups, including SIFMA, have joined to put forward recommendations to promote capital formation and assist more companies in going public or remaining public. Many of the measures suggested in the report have been presented previously, whether in the U.S. Treasury Report on capital markets or in bills introduced in, or passed by, the House Financial Services Committee. For example, the group suggests:
- That for issuers that meet the EGC definition, extending the on-ramp provisions of Title I of the JOBS Act from five to ten years;
- Amending Section 5 of the Securities Act in order to extend the ability to test-the-waters to non-EGC issuers;
- Extending the Sarbanes-Oxley Section 404(b) exemption from five to ten years for lower revenue EGCs; and
- Simplifying or eliminating the “phase out” provisions relating to EGC status.
The report also addresses research related issues and suggests:
- Amending the Securities Act Rule 139 safe harbor to eliminate the Form S-3 eligibility prong;
- Allowing research and banking colleagues to attend pitch meetings and reviewing the Global Research Analyst Settlement; and
- Studying the factors impacting the decision of most firms not to publish pre-IPO research.
Finally, the report addresses other measures, such as regulation of proxy advisory firms, short-selling, the baby shelf restrictions for smaller issuers, and financial reporting and market structure matters, not as closely tied to the IPO market.