In personal bankruptcy cases, typically both the identity of the individual debtor and creditors, along with the value of the creditors’ investments, are well established. Usually, the insolvent party is a consumer, the lender is a bank, and terms of the loan stocks are a qualified risk for investors.
For both these reasons, as variable as business bankruptcy information may be, it may also be inherently valuable to the public, who has a need to know what they stand to lose in the event of company liquidation or reorganization.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), primarily seeks fairness in business practices of financial institutions holding consumer’s securities, but also strives to keep the public informed as part of the fight against corporate exploitation of its rights. As a result, SEC.gov, the official website of the SEC, contains a fair amount of business bankruptcy information that is available for the average investor to review.
Some considerations of what SEC.gov can do for you include:
One of the best aspects of SEC.gov is that it contains a comprehensive explanation on corporate bankruptcies. It disseminates this business bankruptcy information in a way that is not alienating to the everyday reader. In fact, the site bills its synopsis of corporate bankruptcy as “what every investor should know,” and dispenses its metaphorical pearls of wisdom in the form of a dialog between expert and knowledge seeker, essentially serving as a “frequently answered questions” section as seen on other pages.
Some of the topics covered on the business bankruptcy part of SEC.gov include the fate of the company and one’s investments post-filing, as well as the basics behind Chapter 7.
Continuing with this theme of following current events and the latest actions of companies of interest, SEC.gov is a viable gateway for the acquisition of business bankruptcy information, as it is required to be submitted to the Government by law. The EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval) system, the SEC’s patented database of state-mandated filings, is a free conduit to information on a wide varieties of corporate entities, indexed by categories such as fiscal quarter and mutual funds companies.
By the same token, though, in its overall synopsis of bankruptcy (which as written, also heavily relates to Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 business bankruptcies), SEC.gov acknowledges the limited usefulness of the SEC in matters of corporate bankruptcy.
Although the site is an adequate starting point for obtaining business bankruptcy information, it is by no means the most technical. Furthermore, while the SEC may serve as an advocate for claimants in a civil or criminal suit against a corporation, under normal circumstances it will probably be unable to get investors back what is most dear to them: their money.