Hedge Fund Glossary

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Comfort Letter

the natural enemy of both accounting firms and junior- and mid-level law firm associates. The Comfort Letter is a letter from the Issuer’s auditors addressed to the Underwriters (in public offerings) or the Initial Purchasers (in 144A Offerings) that provides “comfort” that the Numbers included in the Prospectus (in public offerings) or in the Offering Memorandum (in 144A Offerings) are accurate. The prescribed form a Comfort Letter should take is spelled out in SAS 72. The Underwriters or Initial Purchasers (and sometimes the board of directors) seek such a letter in order to help establish a Due Diligence Defense. The Comfort Letter allows the Underwriters or Initial Purchasers to demonstrate reliance on experts for the audited financials and an element of a “reasonable investigation” for the unaudited financials and other unaudited financial information. The Comfort Letter is delivered at Pricing. See also Bringdown Comfort Letter, Negative Assurance and SAS 72.

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