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Companies can send only abridged reports
April, 27th 2007

In order to reduce the cost and complication of compliance for listed companies, the Securities & Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has allowed them to send only abridged annual reports containing information on the balance sheet, profit & loss account and auditors report to their shareholders.

In a circular issued on Thursday, Sebi said companies could send abridged annual reports instead of the present practice of sending a complete copy of the full balance sheet, profit & loss account and directors report. In this connection, Sebi has directed all stock exchanges to amend the relevant provisions in Clause 32 of the Equity Listing Agreement, the regulator said.

The Sebi circular comes into immediate effect.

Commenting on the development, Alpesh Shah, senior manager, Centrum Capital, a merchant banker, said, Almost 80-90% of investors do not read the annual report, which consists of more than 500 pages. So, it is not particularly useful to send the complete report to all, he added. The Sebi decision will help companies reduce the cost of compliance, he said.

However, Sebi has said that on a written request from a shareholder, it would be binding on the company to send the complete and full balance sheet, profit & loss account and auditors report.

P&L Lite
A majority of investors do not read full text of annual report
Sebi has told all SEs to amend provisions in Clause 32 of the Equity Listing Agreement
The Sebi direction also aims at increasing the availability of information about listed companies in the public domain like the website of the company, of the SEs and of the common filing platform jointly maintained by the Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange.

The other provisions of Clause 32 of the Equity Listing Agreement pertaining to turnover and income from new activities, as well as cash flow statement to be given along with the profit & loss account, shall remain unchanged.

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