The Alberta Securities Commission recently released its annual Corporate Finance Disclosure Report for 2011, which sets out the results of its continuous disclosure reviews for the past fiscal year. In addition to performing full continuous disclosure reviews, the ASC also conducted issue-oriented reviews focused on the first quarter interim filings of reporting issuers that transitioned to IFRS.
Ultimately, the report highlights recurring issues found in reporting issuers' disclosure, including such things as gaps in financial statements relating to reverse takeover transactions, deficiencies in the disclosure of risk factors and assumptions used to develop forward looking information, and insufficient environmental disclosure.
While the ASC stated that it was generally satisfied with the results of its IFRS-focused reviews, the report cited a slight increase in the amount of refilings requested (from 14% to 16% of issuers reviewed). Notably, the proportion of financial statement refilings increased significantly, from 17% of refilings to 43%. Issues that the ASC observed included missing financial statements, unclear transition impact, boilerplate accounting policy disclosure and lack of identification of IFRS 1 exemptions taken. The report also provides practice tips and examples of disclosure for the benefit of reporting issuers preparing to file their first annual IFRS financial statements.
Finally, the report also reviews disclosure made in offering documents filed by reporting issuers where Alberta is the principal regulator. Deficiencies found in such documents included insufficient disclosure regarding use of proceeds and oil and gas activities.