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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.


Rule 10b-18; SEC File No. 270-416; OMB Control No. 3235-0474.

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 collection of information summarized below. The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget for extension and approval.

Rule 10b-18 under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (Exchange Act) provides that the issuer or any affiliated purchaser of the issuer will not incur liability under Section 9(a)(2) of the Exchange Act or Rule 10b-5 under the Exchange Act if its purchases are effected in compliance with the manner, timing, price, and volume limitations of the safe harbor. The Rule further provides that purchases falling outside of the Rule's conditions shall not give rise to a presumption of manipulation. An issuer or an affiliated purchaser seeking to avail itself of the safe harbor, however, must collect information regarding the manner, time, price, and volume of its purchases of the issuer's common stock in order to verify compliance with the Rule's conditions and application of the safe harbor.

Each year there are approximately 1,179 share repurchase programs conducted in accordance with Rule 10b-18. For each such repurchase program, an average of approximately 8 hours are spent collecting the requisite information. If approximately 1,179 issuers engage in repurchases following a market-wide trading suspension and comply with the safe harbor then, collectively, these issuers would incur an additional 1,179 burden hours. Thus, the total compliance burden per year is approximately 10,611 burden hours.

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.

Please 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: August 23, 2001.

Jonathan G. Katz,


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[FR Doc. 01-22175 Filed 9-4-01; 8:45 am]