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Notice

Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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Upon Written Request, Copies Available From: Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of Filings and Information Services, Washington, DC 20549.

Extension:

Rules 8b-1 to 8b-32, SEC File No. 270-135, OMB Control No. 3235-0176

Rule 206(3)-2, SEC File No. 270-216, OMB Control No. 3235-0243

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 publishing the following summary of collections for public comment. The Commission plans to submit these existing collections of information to the Office of Management and Budget for extension and approval.

Rules 8b-1 to 8b-32 under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (the “Act”) are the procedural rules an investment company must follow when preparing and filing a registration statement. These rules were adopted to standardize the mechanics of registration under the Act and to provide more specific guidance for persons registering under the Act than the information contained in the statute. For the most part, these procedural rules do not require the disclosure of information. Two of the rules, however, require limited disclosure of information.[1] The information required is necessary to ensure that investors have clear and complete information upon which to base an investment decision. The Commission uses the information that investment companies provide on registration statements in its regulatory, disclosure review, inspection and policy-making roles. The respondents to the collection of information are investment companies filing registration statements under the Act.

The Commission does not estimate separately the total annual reporting and recordkeeping burden associated with Rules 8b-1 to 8b-32 because the burden associated with these rules are included in the burden estimates the Commission submits for the investment company registration statement forms (e.g., Form N- 1A, Form N-2, Form N-3, and Form N-4). For example, a mutual fund that prepares a registration statement on Form N-1A must comply with the rules under Section 8(b), including rules on riders, amendments, the form of the registration statement, and the number of copies to be submitted. Because the fund only incurs a burden from the Section 8(b) rules when preparing a registration statement, it would be impractical to measure the compliance burden of these rules separately. The Commission believes that including the burden of the Section 8(b) rules with the burden estimates for the investment company registration statement forms provides a more accurate and complete estimate of the total burdens associated with the registration process.

Rule 206(3)-2 permits investment advisers to comply with Section 206(3) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 (“Advisers Act”) by obtaining a blanket consent from a client to enter into agency cross transactions, provided that certain disclosures are made to the client. The information requirements of the rule consist of the following: (1) Prior to obtaining the client's consent appropriate disclosure must be made to the client as to the practice of, and the conflicts of interest involved in, agency cross transactions; (2) at or before the completion of any such transaction the client must be furnished with a written confirmation containing specified information and offering to furnish upon request certain additional information; and (3) at least annually, the client must be furnished with a written statement or summary as to the total number of transactions during the period covered by the consent and the total amount of commissions received by the adviser or its affiliated broker-dealer attributable to such transactions.

The Commission uses the information required by Rule 206(3)-2 in connection with its investment adviser inspection program to ensure that advisers are in compliance with the rule. Adviser clients also use the information to monitor agency cross transactions. Without the information collected under the rule, the Commission would be less efficient and effective in its inspection program and clients would not have information valuable for monitoring the adviser's handling of their accounts.

The Commission estimates that approximately 785 respondents use the rule annually, necessitating about 32 responses per respondent each year, for a total of 25,120 responses. Each response requires about .5 hours, for a total of 12,560 hours.

The estimated average burden hours are made solely for the purposes of the PRA and are not derived from a comprehensive or even representative survey or study of the cost of Commission rules and forms.

Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; 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.

Direct your written comments to Michael E. Bartell, Associate Executive Director, Office of Information Technology, Securities and Exchange Commission, 450 Fifth Street, NW., Washington, DC 20549.

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Dated: February 1, 2001.

Margaret H. McFarland,

Deputy Secretary.

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Footnotes

1.  Rule 8b-3 provides that whenever a registration form requires the title of securities to be stated, the registrant must indicate the type and general character of the securities to be issued. Rule 8b-22 provides that if the existence of control is open to reasonable doubt, the registrant may disclaim the existence of control, but it must state the material facts pertinent to the possible existence of control.

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[FR Doc. 01-3236 Filed 2-7-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8010-01-M