Tags: SEC | Crack | Down | Bank | Debt | Disclosures

SEC to Crack Down on Bank Debt Disclosures

Thursday, 16 Sep 2010 12:19 PM

Federal regulators are trying to improve debt disclosures in an effort to crack down on financial firms that use accounting gimmicks to bolster their balance sheets.

The Securities and Exchange Commission meets Friday to consider a proposal that would require companies to disclose more information about its short-term borrowings.

The SEC's action comes after it reviewed accounting and disclosure data from 19 of the largest financial companies.

The regulator did not find that the companies improperly used accounting tricks such as the so-called "Repo 105" method that Lehman Brothers was said to have used to conceal losses.

A court examiner's report, issued earlier this year, found Lehman did about $50 billion in Repo 105 transactions, in which repurchase deals were booked as sales instead of financings.

That accounting move allowed Lehman to conceal assets and liabilities, according to the report.

After its review, the SEC did ask several firms to improve their disclosures for accounting for repurchase and to expand their discussion of off-balance sheet arrangements for the first quarter.

On Friday, the SEC will also consider whether to give financial firms guidance on liquidity and capital resources disclosures.

© 2015 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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