Data Analytics Gives SEC Enforcement Edge On Earnings

By Elisha Kobre (September 1, 2021, 5:31 PM EDT) -- In a sign that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission continues to ramp up its enforcement efforts, the SEC last week in In re: Healthcare Services Group Inc. charged a health care services company and its chief financial officer and controller as part of the Division of Enforcement's Earnings Per Share, or EPS, Initiative.

A Sept. 28, 2020, SEC press release described the initiative as "utiliz[ing] risk-based data analytics to uncover potential accounting and disclosure violations caused by, among other things, earnings management practices."[1] Including last week's action, the SEC has now charged three issuers under the EPS Initiative.  ...

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