On November 19, 2001, the International Securities Exchange LLC (“ISE” or “Exchange”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”), pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Act”), and Rule 19b-4 thereunder, a proposed rule change to amend the definition of the term “obvious error” contained in ISE Rule 720 for options with a theoretical price of less than $3.00.
The proposed rule change was published for comment in the Federal Register on May 1, 2002. The Commission received no comments on the proposal.
The Commission finds that the proposed rule change is consistent with the requirements of the Act and the rules and regulations thereunder applicable to a national securities exchange  and, in particular, the requirements of Section 6 of the Act  and the rules and regulations thereunder. The Commission finds specifically that the proposed rule change is consistent with Section 6(b)(5) of the Act  in that it is designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices, to promote just and equitable principles of trade, to remove impediments to and perfect the mechanism for a free and open market and a national market system, and, in general, to protect investors and the public interest.
ISE Rule 720 gives the Exchange authority to bust or adjust trades that result from an “obvious error.” The Rule currently defines an obvious error based upon the market conditions and the difference between the execution price and the “theoretical price” of the options series. To be an obvious error, the difference in execution and theoretical price must be the greater of Start Printed Page 44488$0.50 or two times the allowable spread in regular market conditions (three times the allowable spread in “fast market” conditions).
As the ISE has noted, ISE Rule 720 does not directly consider the price at which the particular options series is trading in determining whether there has been an obvious error (although the allowable spread does increase as an option's price increases). The ISE represents that in administering the Rule, it has found that (1) the price of an option is a significant factor in determining when there is an obvious error; and (2) a pricing error in an options series trading at less than $3.00 can often be significant even if it does not meet the current $0.50 minimum requirement. The Commission believes that it is reasonable for the ISE, based upon its experience in administering the Rule, to amend the Rule to state that the standard for determining the existence of an obvious error for options series trading at less than $3.00 be whether the difference between the execution price and the theoretical price is at least $0.25.
It is therefore ordered, pursuant to Section 19(b)(2) of the Act, that the proposed rule change (File No. SR-ISE-2001-34) be, and it hereby is, approved.Start Signature
For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, pursuant to delegated authority.
Margaret H. McFarland,
3. See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 45811 (April 24, 2002), 67 FR 21788 (May 1, 2002).Back to Citation
4. In approving this proposed rule change, the Commission notes that it has considered the proposed rule's impact on efficiency, competition, and capital formation. 15 U.S.C. 78c(f).Back to Citation
[FR Doc. 02-16542 Filed 7-1-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8010-01-P