The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has pushed back the dates by which U.S. companies must comply with the provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act relating to financial reporting within companies, SEC said in a statement Tuesday.

SEC classifies companies into two categories — accelerated filers and non-accelerated filers.

Accelerated filers — typically U.S. companies with equity market capitalization over US$75 million which have filed at least one annual report with SEC, must begin to comply with the new amendments for their first fiscal year ending on or after Nov. 15, 2004 instead of June 15, 2004.

Non-accelerated filers must begin to comply with these requirements for their first fiscal year ending on or after July 15, 2005 instead of Apr. 15, 2005, SEC said in its statement.

The amendments require companies to include in annual financial reports a report by management on their company’s internal control over financial reporting and an accompanying auditor’s report.