Proposed Collection; Comment Request
Upon Written Request, Copies Available From: U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of Investor Education and Advocacy, Washington, DC 20549-0213.
Rule 17a-11; SEC File. No. 270-94; OMB Control No. 3235-0085.
Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) is soliciting comments on the existing collection of information provided for in Rule 17a-11 (17 CFR 240.17a-11) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. 78a et seq.) (“Exchange Act”). The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget for extension and approval.
In response to an operational crisis in the securities industry between 1967 and 1970, the Commission adopted Rule 17a-11 (17 CFR 240.17a-11) under the Exchange Act on July 11, 1971. The Rule requires broker-dealers that are experiencing financial or operational difficulties to provide notice to the Commission, the broker-dealer's designated examining authority (“DEA”), and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”) if the broker-dealer is registered with the CFTC as a futures commission merchant. Rule 17a-11 is an integral part of the Commission's financial responsibility program which enables the Commission, a broker-dealer's DEA, and the CFTC to increase surveillance of a broker-dealer experiencing difficulties and to obtain any additional information necessary to gauge the broker-dealer's financial or operational condition.
Rule 17a-11 also requires over-the-counter (“OTC”) derivatives dealers and broker-dealers that are permitted to compute net capital pursuant to Appendix E to Exchange Act Rule 15c3-1 to notify the Commission when their tentative net capital drops below certain levels. OTC derivatives dealers must also provide notice to the Commission of backtesting exceptions identified pursuant to Appendix F of Rule 15c3-1 (17 CFR 15c3-1f).
Compliance with the Rule is mandatory. The Commission will generally not publish or make available to any person notices or reports received pursuant to Rule 17a-11. The Commission believes that information obtained under Rule 17a-11 relates to a condition report prepared for the use of the Commission, other federal governmental authorities, and securities industry self-regulatory organizations responsible for the regulation or supervision of financial institutions.
Only broker-dealers whose capital declines below certain specified levels or who are otherwise experiencing financial or operational problems have a reporting burden under Rule 17a-11. In 2011, the Commission received approximately 465 notices under this Rule, including one notice from an OTC derivatives dealer permitted to compute net capital pursuant to Appendix E to Exchange Act Rule 15c3-1.
Each broker-dealer reporting pursuant to Rule 17a-11 will spend approximately one hour preparing and transmitting the notice required by the rule. Accordingly, the total estimated annualized burden under Rule 17a-11 is 465 hours.
Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Commission's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information on respondents; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Consideration will be given to comments and suggestions submitted in writing within 60 days of this publication.
The Commission may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a current valid control number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the PRA that does not display a valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number.
Please direct your written comments to: Thomas Bayer, Director/Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, c/o Remi Pavlik-Simon, 6432 General Green Way, Alexandria, VA 22312 or send an email to: PRA_Mailbox@sec.gov.
Dated: April 19, 2012.
Elizabeth M. Murphy,
[FR Doc. 2012-9938 Filed 4-24-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8011-01-P