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

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”) has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget requests for extension of the previously approved collections of information discussed below.

Regulation ATS provides a regulatory structure that directly addresses issues related to alternative trading systems' role in the marketplace. Regulation ATS allows alternative trading systems to choose between two regulatory structures. Alternative trading systems have the choice between registering as broker-dealers and complying with Regulation ATS or registering as national securities exchanges. Regulation ATS provides the regulatory framework for those alternative trading systems that choose to be regulated as broker-dealers.

Rule 301 of Regulation ATS contains certain notice and reporting requirements, as well as additional obligations that only apply to alternative trading systems with significant volume. Rule 301 describes the conditions with which an alternative trading system must comply to be registered as a broker-dealer. Rule 301 requires all alternative trading systems that wish to comply with Regulation ATS to file an initial operation report on Form ATS. The initial operation report requires information regarding operation of the system including the method of operation, access criteria and the types of securities traded. Alternative trading systems are also required to supply updates on Form ATS to the Commission, describing material changes to the system, and quarterly transaction reports on Form ATS-R. Alternative trading systems are also required to file cessation of operations reports on Form ATS.

Alternative trading systems with significant volume are required to comply with requirements for fair access and systems capacity, integrity and security. Under Rule 301, such alternative trading systems are required to establish standards for granting access to trading on its system. In addition, upon a decision to deny or limit an investor's access to the system, an alternative trading system is required to provide notice to the investor of the denial or limitation and their right to an appeal to the Commission. Regulation ATS requires alternative trading systems to preserve any records made in the process of complying with the systems' capacity, integrity and security requirements. In addition, such alternative trading systems are required to notify Commission staff of material systems outages and significant systems changes.

The Commission uses the information provided pursuant to Rule 301 to comprehensively monitor the growth and development of alternative trading systems to confirm that investors effecting trades through the systems are adequately protected, and that the systems do not impede the maintenance of fair and orderly securities markets or otherwise operate in a manner that is inconsistent with the federal securities laws. In particular, the information collected and reported to the Commission by alternative trading systems enables the Commission to evaluate the operation of alternative trading systems with regard to national market system goals, and monitor the competitive effects of these systems to ascertain whether the regulatory framework remains appropriate to the operation of such systems. Without the information provided on Forms ATS and ATS-R, the Commission would not have readily available information on a regular basis in a format that will allow it to determine whether such systems have adequate safeguards.

Respondents consist of alternative trading systems that choose to register as broker-dealers and comply with the requirements of Regulation ATS. The Commission estimates that there are currently approximately 69 respondents.

An estimated 69 respondents will file an average total of 493 responses per year, which corresponds to an estimated annual response burden of 1,988.5 hours. At an average cost per burden hour of approximately $77.07, the resultant total related cost of compliance for these respondents is $153,263.14 per year (1,988.5 burden hours multiplied by $77.07/hour).

Rule 302 of Regulation ATS describes the recordkeeping requirements for alternative trading systems that are not national securities exchanges. Under Rule 302, alternative trading systems are required to make a record of subscribers to the alternative trading system, daily summaries of trading in the alternative trading system and records of order information in the alternative trading system.

The information required to be collected under Rule 302 should increase the abilities of the Commission, state securities regulatory authorities, and the SROs to ensure that alternative trading systems are in compliance with Regulation ATS as well as other rules and regulations of the Commission and the SROs. If the information is not collected or collected less frequently, the Commission would be severely limited in its ability to comply with its statutory obligations, provide for the protection of investors and promote the maintenance of fair and orderly markets.

Respondents consist of alternative trading systems that choose to register as broker-dealers and comply with the requirements of Regulation ATS. The Commission estimates that there are currently approximately 69 respondents.

Sixty-nine respondents will spend approximately 2,484 hours per year to comply with the recordkeeping requirements of Rule 302. At an average cost per burden hour of $86.54, the resultant total related cost of compliance for these respondents is $214,965.36 per year (2,484 burden hours multiplied by $86.54/hour).

Rule 303 of Regulation ATS describes the record preservation requirements for alternative trading systems that are not national securities exchanges.

For alternative trading systems that register as broker-dealers, comply with Regulation ATS and meet certain volume thresholds, such alternative trading systems would be required to preserve all records made pursuant to Rule 302, which includes information relating to subscribers, trading summaries and order information. Such alternative trading systems would also be required to preserve records of any notices communicated to subscribers, a copy of the systems' standards for granting access and any documents generated in the course of complying with the systems' capacity, integrity and security requirements under Regulation ATS. Rule 303 also describes how such records must be kept and how long they must be preserved.

The information contained in the records required to be preserved by Rule 303 will be used by examiners and other representatives of the Commission, state securities regulatory authorities, and the SROs to ensure that alternative trading systems are in compliance with Start Printed Page 35286Regulation ATS as well as other rules and regulations of the Commission and the SROs. Without the data required by Rule 303, the Commission would be severely limited in its ability to comply with its statutory obligations, provide for the protection of investors and promote the maintenance of fair and orderly markets.

Respondents consist of alternative trading systems that choose to register as broker-dealers and comply with the requirements of Regulation ATS. The Commission estimates that there are currently approximately 69 respondents.

Sixty-nine respondents will spend approximately 276 hours per year (69 respondents at 4 burden hours/respondent) to comply with the record preservation requirements of Rule 303. At an average cost per burden hour of $86.54, the resultant total related cost of compliance for these respondents is $23,885.04 per year (276 burden hours multiplied by $86.54/hour).

Compliance with Rules 301, 302, and 303 is mandatory. The information required by the Rules 301, 302, and 303 is available only to the examination of the Commission staff, state securities authorities and the SROs. Subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. 522 (“FOIA”), and the Commission's rules thereunder (17 CFR 200.80(b)(4)(iii)), the Commission does not generally publish or make available information contained in any reports, summaries, analyses, letters, or memoranda arising out of, in anticipation of, or in connection with an examination or inspection of the books and records of any person or any other investigation.

Regulation ATS requires alternative trading systems to preserve any records, for at least three years, made in the process of complying with the systems capacity, integrity and security requirements.

An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid control number.

Written comments regarding the above information should be directed to the following persons: (a) Desk Officer for the Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Room 10102, New Executive Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20503; and (b) Michael E. Bartell, Associate Executive Director, Office of Information Technology, Securities and Exchange Commission, 450 Fifth Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20549. Comments must be submitted to the Office of Management and Budget within 30 days of this notice.

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Dated: June 26, 2001.

Margaret H. McFarland,

Deputy Secretary.

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[FR Doc. 01-16633 Filed 7-2-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8010-01-M