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Self-Regulatory Organizations; Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change by the Pacific Exchange, Inc. To Amend Its Rules To Impose a Connectivity Fee Applicable to Non-Members That Maintain a Connectivity Line With the Exchange

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Start Preamble February 17, 2004.

Pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Act”)[1] and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,[2] notice is hereby given that on January 28, 2004, the Pacific Exchange, Inc. (“PCX” or “Exchange”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) the proposed rule change as described in Items 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 is proposing to amend the Floor, Market Maker and Remote Market Maker Fees portion of its Schedule of Fees and Charges (“Schedule”). The text of the proposed change to the fee schedule is available at the Exchange and at the Commission.

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

1. Purpose

The Exchange is proposing to amend the Floor, Market Maker and Remote Market Maker portion of its Schedule in order to create a connectivity fee of $300 per line per month that would be applicable to non-members that maintain a connectivity line with the Exchange.

On December 12, 2003, the Exchange filed a proposed rule change to implement a connectivity fee applicable to members of the Exchange.[3] This fee became effective upon filing.[4] At this time, the Exchange wishes to implement the same connectivity fee applicable non-members.[5] As the Exchange previously stated, it maintains a significant number of telecommunications lines that support connectivity from various routing firms from both members and non-members of the Exchange. Thus, the PCX dedicates a significant amount of resources to installation and maintenance. The installation and maintenance costs for these lines are the same for members and non-members. Therefore, the Exchange believes that the proposed fee will provide for the cost recovery of the expenses incurred as part of the initial deployment and ongoing testing of these lines.

2. Statutory Basis

The Exchange believes that the proposal is consistent with Section 6(b) of the Act,[6] in general, and Section 6(b)(4) of the Act,[7] in particular, in that it provides for the equitable allocation of reasonable dues, fees and other charges among its members and other persons using its facilities.

B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition

The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose Start Printed Page 8510any 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

Written comments were neither solicited nor received with respect to the proposed rule change.

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 Exchange 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. Comments may also be submitted electronically at the following e-mail address: All comment letters should refer to File No. SR-PCX-2004-05. This file number should be included on the subject line if e-mail is used. To help the Commission process and review your comments more efficiently, comments should be sent in hardcopy or by e-mail but not by both methods. 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 in the Commission's Public Reference Room. Copies of such filing will also be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the PCX. All submissions should refer to File No. SR-PCX-2004-05 and should be submitted by March 16, 2004.

Start Signature

For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, pursuant to delegated authority.[8]

Margaret H. McFarland,

Deputy Secretary.

End Signature End Preamble


3.  See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 48970 (December 22, 2003), 68 FR 75306 (December 30, 2003) (SR-PCX-2003-67).

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4.  See Section 19(b)(3)(A)(ii) of the Act. 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A)(ii).

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5.  The Exchange does not anticipate that a significant number of non-members will be billed as a result of this proposed rule change. However, the proposed rule change attempts to align the connectivity fee with the parties that are establishing connections with this market center, irrespective of whether the parties are members. Accordingly, the Exchange is expanding the scope of the connectivity fee so that it can appropriately assess the fee on non-member firms such as correspondents and service bureaus.

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[FR Doc. 04-3885 Filed 2-23-04; 8:45 am]