April 6, 2023

Clawback Rule Timing in the Spotlight

As John noted in the blog last week, the timing of the SEC’s approval of exchange listing standards implementing Rule 10D-1 could be upon us sooner rather than later. That outcome could prompt a flurry of activity as issuers seek to implement compliant clawback policies within the 60-day window mandated by the SEC.

On Monday, a group of law firms submitted letters to the SEC responding to the requests for comments on the NYSE and Nasdaq clawback proposals, asking that the SEC not approve the adoption and effectiveness of the listing standards earlier than November 28, 2023. The letters outlined the many challenges that issuers are facing in determining how to implement a compliant clawback policy, on top of having to address other recent SEC rules changes such as the pay versus performance disclosure requirements and the Rule 10b5-1 amendments. The letters also note that adoption of a clawback policy would require board approval, and issuers would therefore be forced to hastily convene board meetings for such purpose given the uncertainty associated with the effective date of the listing standards and the subsequent short compliance period.

We can only hope that the SEC will carefully consider these comments when determining the timing for approval of the final listing standards.

– Dave Lynn