Pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Act”)  and Rule 19b-4 thereunder, notice is hereby given that on January 3, 2001, the Boston Stock Exchange, Inc. (“Exchange”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) the proposed rule change as described in Item I, II and III below, which items have been prepared by the Exchange. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons.
I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change
The Exchange seeks to amend the Interpretations and Policies of Section 6, Limitations on Exchange Liability, of Chapter XXIV, Portfolio Depositary Receipts, of the Rules of the Board of Governors to reduce from $1,000,000 to $200,000 the minimum equity requirement for firms trading derivative-based products if the firm arranges to clear its trades through another forum and obtains Exchange approval to do so. Below is the text of the proposed rule change. New text is in italic.
Portfolio Depositary Receipts
Limitation on Exchange Liability
* * * Interpretation and Policies
* * * 03 For derivative based trading products, the minimum equity requirement, in certain limited circumstances, will be reduced from $1,000,000 to $200,000. The limited circumstances under which the equity requirement will be reduced must be based on clearing arrangements with another forum, through which a BSE member firm will settle their derivative product trades executed on the floor of the Exchange through a separate, non BSECC-member, clearing center. All such arrangements must be fully disclosed to, and approved by, the Exchange, prior to the reduction of the equity requirement. The Early Warning Alert provisions set forth in Chapter XXII, Sections 2(f)(ii) and (iii), and the caretaker provision set forth in Chapter XXII, Section 2(f)(iv) shall apply.
II. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change
In its filing with the Commission, the Exchange included statements concerning the purpose of and basis for the proposed rule change and discussed any comments it received on the proposed rule change. The text of these statements may be examined at the places specified in Item IV below. The Exchange has prepared summaries, set forth in Sections A, B, and C below, of the most significant aspects of such statements.
A. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change
The purpose of this proposed rule change is to add Paragraph .03 to the Interpretations and Policies of Chapter XXIV, Portfolio Depositary Receipts, Section 6, Limitation on Exchange Liability, of the Rules of the Board of Governors to reduce from $1,000,000 to $200,000 the minimum equity requirement for firms trading derivative based products if the firm arranges to clear its derivative based products trades through another forum, (“XBSE”) and obtains Exchange approval to do so. The rationale for this is that the risk to the Exchange is substantially reduced if a member firm arranges pre-approved procedures for derivative-based products to settle through another, non-Boston Stock Exchange Clearing Corporation clearing institution. This policy would only apply in the limited product area of Portfolio Depositary Receipts, as is made clear in Section 1 of the relevant Chapter (XXIV), entitled “Applicability,” which states that “[t]his Chapter is applicable only to Portfolio Depositary Receipts.”
The statutory basis for the proposed rule change is Section 6(b)(5) of the Act, in that it is designed to foster cooperation and coordination with persons engaged in regulating, clearing, Start Printed Page 18127settling, processing information with respect to, and facilitating transactions in securities; and is not designed to permit unfair discrimination between customers, issuers, brokers or dealers.
B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition
The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose any burden on competition that is not necessary or appropriate in furtherance of the purposes of the Act.
C. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change Received From Members, Participants or Others
No written comments were either solicited or received.
III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action
Within 35 days of the date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register or within such longer period (i) as the Commission may designate up to 90 days of such date if it finds such longer period to be appropriate and publishes its reasons for so finding or (ii) as to which the self-regulatory organization consents, the Commission will:
(A) by order approve such proposed rule change, or
(B) institute proceedings to determine whether the proposed rule change should be disapproved.
IV. Solicitation of Comments
Interested persons are invited to submit written data, views and arguments concerning the foregoing, including whether the proposed rule change is consistent with the Act. Persons making written submissions should file six copies thereof with the Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 450 Fifth Street, NW., Washington, DC 20549-0609. Copies of the submission, all subsequent amendments, all written statements with respect to the proposed rule change that are filed with the Commission, and all written communications relating to the proposed rule change between the Commission and any person, other than those that may be withheld from the public in accordance with the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 552, will be available for inspection and copying at the Commission's Public Reference Room. Copies of such filing will also be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the Exchange. All submissions should refer to File No. SR-BSE-00-22 and should be submitted by April 26, 2001.Start Signature
For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, pursuant to delegated authority.
Margaret H. McFarland,
[FR Doc. 01-8349 Filed 4-4-01; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8010-01-M