The Securities and Exchange Commission has issued an order staying the effective date for compliance with the some of the conflict minerals rules the agency had drawn up after an appeals court ruled that they violated the First Amendment.
Last month, an appeals court ruled against SEC regulations mandated by the Dodd-Frank Act that would require companies to disclose their use of minerals like gold, tin and tungsten that have fueled conflicts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and other war-torn parts of Africa (see Court Says SEC Conflict Mineral Rule Violates Speech Rights). Business groups have tried to block the regulations, claiming the disclosures would violate their constitutional right to freedom of speech. The appeals court referred the case back to a lower court to address the free speech issues in the regulations, but rejected some of the other challenges to the conflict minerals rules.
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