09/20/2011 05:05 EDT | Updated 11/20/2011 05:12 EST

CIRI seeks equal access for public company documents filed with SEDAR

TORONTO - The Canadian Investor Relations Institute is asking the Canadian Securities Administrators to give all investors equal access to information filed electronically by publicly traded companies.

CIRI said Tuesday the System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR) provides two levels of access to information filed by reporting issuers: near real-time access for a fee via a subscription service and next-day access for free on the SEDAR website.

While the companies must issue a news release disclosing material changes, they do not always provide all the information that might influence investors, CIRI's president and chief executive wrote in a letter to William Rice, chairman of the Canadian Securities Administrators.

"The Canadian Investor Relations Institute strongly believes that having two access levels to company filings on SEDAR is inconsistent with the intent of securities regulations to foster fair and efficient capital markets," Tom Enright wrote in the letter.

"This requires a level playing field, which is not provided under the current two-tier level of access to SEDAR filings."

CIRI represents executives responsible for communication between public companies, investors and the financial community.