Category: Securities

Unexpected Risks of Early Exercise Incentive Stock Options

Canadian companies and their outside counsel occasionally ask about the ability to grant early exercise incentive stock options (“ISOs”) to limit the impact of the U.S. alternative minimum tax (“AMT”) to their U.S. employees. However, due to fairly counterintuitive U.S. federal tax regulations, structuring options in this manner may expose optionees to negative tax consequences...

Tax Consequences to U.S. Shareholders of Holding Shares in a Passive Foreign Investment Company or PFIC

If a non-U.S. corporation (the “Company”) is a “passive foreign investment company” or “PFIC” for any tax year during which a U.S. shareholder owns shares in the Company, certain adverse U.S. federal income tax consequences of the acquisition, ownership, and disposition of shares will generally apply to such U.S. shareholder. A U.S. shareholder will be...

Compensation to Newsletter Writers Must Be Disclosed

On April 10, 2017, the SEC’s Division of Enforcement brought enforcement actions against 27 individuals and entities behind various alleged stock promotion schemes. These actions arose when public companies, through promoters or communications firms, hired newsletter writers to generate publicity for their securities without publicly disclosing that the writers were being paid. While it is...

The Danger of Paying Finder’s Fees to Unregistered Broker-Dealers

We get asked from time-to-time whether it is advisable for issuers to pay fees to unregistered “finders” for introducing potential investors in the United States to the issuer in connection with securities offerings. The short answer is “no.” Most finders are engaged by issuers under finder’s, advisory, or other arrangements, which typically require payment of...

United States Moves to T+2 Securities Settlement

This week, the SEC approved a rule that would require broker-dealers to settle most securities transactions on a T+2 basis (shortening the current regime from T+3), effective September 5, 2017. See additional information in the post from our partner Jason Brenkert here. Will Canadian regulators follow suit?

Compliance with XBRL for Foreign Private Issuers that Prepare their Financial Statements in Accordance with IFRS Required Beginning with Annual Reports for Fiscal Periods Ending on or after December 15, 2017

On March 1, 2017, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published the taxonomy for the eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) for financial statements prepared in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards, as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (IFRS). Accordingly, foreign private issuers that prepare their financial statements in accordance with IFRS...

Resource Extraction Disclosure Requirements are Dumped

Canadian miners and oil & gas companies should be aware that on February 14, 2017, President Trump approved a joint resolution of Congress that disapproved a recent SEC rule requiring specific disclosure by resource extraction issues. The obligation to report was imposed by Rule 13q-1 under the Exchange Act. The rules would have required resource...