January 12, 2009

Today’s Proxy Season Webcast with Pat McGurn – and Our New “Proxy Season Blog”

We have posted “Course Materials” for today’s webcast with Pat McGurn: “Forecast for 2009 Proxy Season: Wild and Woolly.” You’ll want to print those out before the program. As always, an archive of the webcast will be available right after the “live” program if you have a conflict in your schedule.

I’m also excited to announce our new “Proxy Season Blog,” where we will post practical guidance on a daily basis regarding latest developments regarding the proxy season as well as guidance on issues that commonly arise season after season. This members-only blog will include contributions from our own crack-team as well as those experts in our community (if you wish to contribute, please contact me.

Also note that we continue to post oodles of checklists and memos in our “Proxy Season” Practice Area – including this newly updated 33-page “Time & Responsibility Schedule.”

Renew Today: Since all memberships are on a calendar-year basis, if you don’t renew today, you will be unable to access Pat McGurn’s webcast. Renew now for ’09! [Here is our “Renewal Center” to better enable you to renew all your expired memberships and subscriptions.]

Inauguration Day: Will Edgar..umm “IDEA”..Be Open?

A number of members have asked whether the SEC’s Edgar (which is now called “IDEA”) will be open for filings on Inauguration Day since it’s not considered a national holiday (per this list, it’s just a “holiday” for those working in DC). The short answer from SEC on this question is “yes,” per this press release.

However, the SEC’s press release doesn’t directly answer the question as to whether Inauguration Day is considered a normal “business day” for EDGAR filing date purposes (e.g. counting days towards due dates). On that, I believe that the answer will be like last time – that it is considered a “business day” Interestingly, the SEC directly answered that question in its press release related to the 2005 press release.

In comparison, Martin Luther King Day is a national holiday – and thus Edgar is closed and that day isn’t treated as a “business day.”

It promises to be bedlam down here in DC for Inauguration Day. If you are down here to take part in the festivities, I recommend taking the bus. Here is a bus schedule for that day.

Coming Soon: Mary Schapiro’s Confirmation

The US Senate has scheduled Mary Schapiro’s confirmation hearings for this Thursday, January 15th, ahead of President-elect Obama’s Inauguration. Some members have asked how can that be? [The WSJ reports that Mary may receive tough questioning (particularly about the lawsuits mentioned in today’s NY Times’ article) – that likely will be the case given the public’s interest in the markets these days, but I would be surprised if she wasn’t confirmed.]

It can be. In fact, Obama’s Cabinet confirmation hearings already started up last week. Once the Senate confirms that Obama was the winner by tallying all of the electoral votes, his selections can start being confirmed.

A more provocative question is when was the selection of a SEC Chair so important that confirmation hearings took place before a President was inaugurated? A look at the timeline for SEC Chair appointments reveals that this is a “first.” Often, there is a few months lag between Inauguration Day and the naming of a new SEC Chair – and it hasn’t been uncommon for the lag to stretch even longer…

Online Surveys & Market Research

– Broc Romanek