Regulation Fair Disclosure (Regulation FD or Reg FD) is a rule issued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that requires publicly traded companies to disclose material, nonpublic information to all investors simultaneously. According to the SEC, Reg FD aims to promote full and fair disclosure.
The regulation is meant to prevent selective disclosure, or when a public company releases market-moving information to certain individuals or entities, typically securities market professionals or certain shareholders that can trade on the basis of that information. Such selective disclosure became common in the 1990s, when many companies disclosed important information such as quarterly results in conference calls and meetings, but excluded certain shareholders, particularly small investors, as well as the general public.
When the SEC proposed Regulation FD in December 1999, it was supported by thousands of individual investors, while large institutional investors that were used to profiting from selectively released information opposed the proposal. Reg FD went into effect on Oct. 23, 2000.
On April 2, 2013, the SEC announced that companies can use social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter to share important information, as long as they are in compliance with Reg FD and investors have been informed about which social media outlet will be used to announce the information.