Trump Call For SEC To Study Reporting Rules Sparks Debate

Donald Trump

American firms should no longer have to report on a quarterly basis, United States president Donald Trump has said.

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton on Friday issued a statement about long-term investing in which he neither endorsed nor rejected the call from President Donald Trump for companies to report to twice a year, rather than four times a year.

"I'd like to see twice, but we're going to see", Trump later told reporters when asked about his tweet.

The SEC consists of five commissioners appointed by the president, although there now are only four in place, three named by Trump, including Clayton.

"In speaking with some of the world's top business leaders I asked what it is that would make business (jobs) even better in the US".

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A Pentagon memo from March said the parade route would have a "heavy air component at the end of the parade". The last military parade held in the nation's capital ran in 1991 , after the end of the Gulf War.

Switching to a six-monthly reporting system would "allow greater flexibility and save money", Mr Trump said. The Commissioners' offices did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

On the other hand, a study by experts at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business and City University of London, England, found that frequent financial reporting in itself creates short-sightedness that pushes companies to stress immediate results at the expense of longer-term investments.

Publicly traded companies in the United States, as well as Canada, now file their earnings reports every three months, or four times per year.

Tesla chief executive Elon Musk also cited the issue when explaining why he has launched a surprise effort to take the $50 billion auto company private.

Quarterly earnings guidance is used by Wall Street and City analysts to build their earnings estimates and gauge company performance against these figures.

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Companies that want to move away from short-term scrutiny should instead stop publicly projecting the next quarter's earnings, Pozen added.

Still, Van Sinderen cautions, six months can be a long time for smaller companies - particularly those shouldering hard challenges - and can lead to other issues should those two reports differ drastically. "We start preparing three weeks in advance every quarter, essentially taking nearly a third of executives' time each quarter", said Bryan Sheffield, chief executive of shale oil producer Parsley Energy Inc. In 1996, nearly 950 companies went public, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Last fall it laid out a blueprint for changes to capital market rules in a U.S. Treasury report, but did not advocate scrapping quarterly reporting.

He would need to draft a proposed rule-change which would then be put to an industry consultation during which investors, companies, exchanges, pension funds and public interest groups would likely bombard the SEC with information.

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