On October 28, 2003, the National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc. (“NASD”), through its subsidiary, The Nasdaq Stock Market, Inc. (“Nasdaq”), 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 establish a Nasdaq Official Opening Price that would be made available for wholly voluntary use by NASD members and the public. The proposed rule change was published for comment in the Federal Register on November 26, 2003. The Commission received no comments on the proposal. This order approves the proposed rule change.
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 association. In particular, the Commission believes that the proposed rule change is consistent with Section 15A of the Act  in general, and furthers the objectives of Section 15A(b)(6)  in particular, in that it is designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices, to promote just and equitable principles of trade, to foster cooperation and coordination with persons engaged in regulating, clearing, settling, processing information with respect to, and facilitating transactions in securities, to remove impediments to and perfect the mechanism of a free and open market and a national market system, and in general, to protect investors and the public interest. Specifically, the Commission believes that Nasdaq's proposal may result in the public dissemination of information that more accurately reflects the trading in a particular security on Nasdaq at the open.
For the foregoing reasons, the Commission finds that the proposed rule change is consistent with the requirements of the Act and rules and regulations thereunder.
It is therefore ordered, pursuant to section 19(b)(2) of the Act  , that the proposed rule change (SR-NASD-2003-161) is approved.Start Signature
For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, pursuant to delegated authority.
Jill M. Peterson,
4. In approving the proposed rule change, the Commission has considered the proposed rule's impact on efficiency, competition, and capital formation. 15 U.S.C. 78c(f).Back to Citation
[FR Doc. 04-224 Filed 1-5-04; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8010-01-P