The FCA, Financial Reporting Council (FRC) and Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) have issued made a joint statement to remind companies of the extant measures which provide some flexibility during the pandemic, including allowing listed companies an additional two months to publish their audited Annual Report, and an additional one month for their Interim Report.
In addition, the joint statement reminded companies that it is as important as ever that the market is kept up to date with information. The Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) remains in force and companies are still required to fulfil their obligations concerning inside information as soon as possible unless they have a valid reason to delay disclosure under the regulation
Coronavirus-related reporting and audit guidance
The FRC has also issued a series of guidance to support high-quality reporting and disclosure of the circumstances companies have faced as a result of the pandemic, and the mitigating actions they have taken to address risks.
In particular, Audit Committees may consider it appropriate to set out in their Annual Report the work they have undertaken and measures agreed to ensure high-quality reporting and audit for the period. This might include how they have ensured they have allowed enough flexibility in the year-end timetable to complete all the necessary work to an appropriate standard that will meet investor and stakeholder expectations.
Auditors’ duty to report
The FCA and FRC also reminded audit firms of their regulatory obligations to report, to the appropriate regulator, matters arising from their work on a timely basis.
The full text and guidance can be downloaded here:
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