11 Jun 2012

Prospectus guidelines start being applied in July

8:44 am on 11 June 2012

A securities lawyer says those seeking to raise new money from the public will have to consider new guidance from the regulator from early July.

The Financial Markets Authority has finalised its guidance on how to prepare and present effective prospectuses and investment statements by avoiding unnecessary jargon and confusing information.

Following concerns from industry players about cost and complexity, Chapman Tripp partner Roger Wallis says the third round of changes by the authority have made it better and more workable.

Mr Wallis says while the guidance is just that - guidance - he doesn't think many firms will want to ignore the suggestions made by the regulator.

The FMA will apply the guidance from early July for new documentation, and for documentation issued on a continuous basis from the first time it is refreshed after 1 January 2013.

Mr Wallis said the timing recognises that it will be a big job for some of the larger market participants to rework some of their documentation.

He says it is now clearer what goes in an investment statement and in a prospectus, and recognises that registered banks' disclosure under Reserve Bank rules align with prospectus requirements.

He says it also acknowledges the test for materiality is information that is likely to affect the judgement of a prudent but non-expert investor when making a decision about whether to invest.