United Technologies Corporation
United Technologies Building
Hartford, Connecticut 06101
David G. Nord
May 23, 2002
Jonathan G. Katz, Secretary
Securities and Exchange Commission
450 Fifth Street NW
Washington, DC 20549
Subject: File No. S7-08-02
Dear Mr. Katz:
We appreciate the opportunity to express our views on the proposed Securities and Exchange Commission ("Commission") Rule (File No. S7-08-02) Acceleration of Periodic Report Filing Dates and Disclosure Concerning Website Access to Reports.
We support the Commission's proposed rule to accelerate the filing of quarterly and annual reports by domestic reporting companies to 30 calendar days after period end for quarterly reports and 60 calendar days after fiscal year end for annual reports. We also support the proposal to require availability of financial statements on a Registrant's website concurrent with filing with the Commission.
We acknowledge the need for investors and financial markets to have access to information that is clear, accurate and timely. While not the ultimate solution, accelerating the required filing dates of quarterly and annual reports by registrants, along with providing website access to this financial information, would provide more timely and accessible information to financial statement users.
We understand there has been some concern expressed that smaller entities and new issuers may not have the resources or infrastructure to prepare their periodic reports in a shorter timeframe without undue burden or expense. We believe most companies subject to the accelerated filing requirements in your proposal are not immune to these challenges. United Technologies Corporation has been filing its quarterly and annual reports within the proposed dates for several years, and we face these issues continually. We believe that further consideration should be given to transition provisions, as the challenges of adopting the new reporting deadlines will undoubtedly vary among affected companies. The provisions of any final rules should allow ample flexibility to ensure that the quality of the financial information reported by these companies is not compromised in the short-term.
In this regard, there are a number of matters to consider. The challenge to accelerate filing is directly related to the magnitude of related disclosure requirements. The Commission has over the last few years, and what seems to be increasingly in recent months, expanded the expected information for disclosure consideration in quarterly and annual filings. We would encourage the Commission to review the current disclosure requirements and expectations to ensure that quarterly requirements are as streamlined as possible. Additionally, some of this guidance has been provided during the period between the reporting period end and related filing date. This practice can create undue burden in an environment of accelerated filing. We would encourage the Commission to consider a practice standard that would provide a "blackout" period during which no new guidance would be provided.
Thank you for your consideration. We welcome the opportunity to discuss any of these matters with the Commission at its convenience.
David G. Nord