A Plain English Handbook: How to Create Clear Sec Disclosure Documents

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Nancy M. Smith
DIANE Publishing, 2001 - 77 pages
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This handbook issued by the Securities and Exchange Comm. (SEC) shows how you can use well-established techniques for writing in plain English to create clearer and more informative disclosure documents. When drafting a document for filing with the SEC, you must make sure it meets all legal requirements. Chapters: what is a "plain English" document?; knowing your audience; knowing the info. you need to disclose; organizing the document; writing in plain English; designing the document; time-saving tips; using readability formulas and style checkers; evaluating the document; reading list; the SEC's plain English rules; and "before" and "after" filings with notes.

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Page 72 - These securities have not been approved or disapproved by the Securities and Exchange Commission nor has the Commission passed upon the accuracy or adequacy of this prospectus. Any representation to the contrary Is a criminal offense.
Page 67 - To enhance the readability of the prospectus, you must use plain English principles in the organization, language, and design of the front and back cover pages, the summary, and the risk factors section. (2) You must draft the language in these sections so that at a minimum it substantially complies with each of the following plain English writing principles: (i) Short sentences; (ii) Definite, concrete, everyday words...
Page 76 - Interests and other charges shall be computed on the basis of a 360-day year of twelve 30-day month for any period less than a full one half of a year.
Page 49 - Graphical excellence is that which gives to the viewer the greatest number of ideas in the shortest time with the least ink in the smallest space.
Page 67 - Active voice; (iv) Tabular presentation or bullet lists for complex material, whenever possible; (v) No legal jargon or highly technical business terms; and (vi) No multiple negatives. (3) In designing these sections or other sections of the prospectus, you may include pictures, logos, charts, graphs, or other design elements so long as the design is not misleading and the required information is clear. You are encouraged to use tables. schedules, charts and graphic illustrations of the results of...
Page 49 - At their best, graphics are instruments for reasoning about quantitative information. Often the most effective way to describe, explore, and summarize a set of numbers - even a very large set - is to look at pictures of those numbers. Furthermore, of all methods for analyzing and communicating statistical information, well-designed data graphics are usually the simplest and at the same time the most powerful.
Page 22 - This Summary does not purport to be complete and is qualified in its entirety by the more detailed information contained in the Proxy Statement and the Appendices hereto, all of which should be carefully reviewed.
Page 66 - Present information in clear, concise sections, paragraphs, and sentences. Whenever possible, use short, explanatory sentences and bullet lists; (2) Use descriptive headings and subheadings; (3) Avoid frequent reliance on glossaries or defined terms as the primary means of explaining information in the prospectus. Define terms in a glossary or other section of the document only if the meaning is unclear from the context. Use a glossary only if it facilitates understanding of the disclosure; and (4)...
Page 43 - The Securities and Exchange Commission has not approved or disapproved these securities or determined if this prospectus is truthful or complete. Any representation to the contrary is a...
Page 71 - An investment in the Fund is not insured or guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other government agency. Although the Fund seeks to preserve the value of your investment at $1.00 per share, it is possible to lose money by investing in the Fund.

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