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Notice

Self-Regulatory Organizations; International Securities Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Relating to the Extension of a Pilot Period To Increase Position Limits and Exercise Limits for Equity Options and Options on the Nasdaq-100 Tracking Stock

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Start Preamble August 15, 2005.

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 August 10, 2005, the International Securities Exchange, Inc. (“ISE” or “Exchange”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) the proposed rule change as described in items I and II below, which items have been prepared by the ISE. The Exchange has filed the proposal as a “non-controversial” rule change pursuant to section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act [3] and Rule 19b-4(f)(6) thereunder,[4] which renders it effective upon filing with the Commission. 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 ISE proposes to extend the time period for the ISE Rule 412 and ISE Rule 414 position and exercise limits pilot program for equity option contracts and options on the Nasdaq-100 Index Tracking Stock (“QQQQ”) (“Pilot Program”). The text of the proposed rule change is available on the ISE's Web site (http://www.iseoptions.com), at the ISE's principal office, and at the Commission's Public Reference Room.

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 ISE 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 Pilot Program provides for an increase to the standard position and exercise limits for equity option contracts and for options on QQQQs for a six month period.[5] Specifically, the Pilot Program increased the applicable position and exercise limits for equity options and options on the QQQQ to the following levels: [6]

Current equity option contract limitPilot Program equity option contract limit
13,500 contracts25,000 contracts.
22,500 contracts50,000 contracts.
31,500 contracts75,000 contracts.
60,000 contracts200,000 contracts.
75,000 contracts250,000 contracts.
Current QQQQ Option Contract LimitPilot Program QQQQ Option Contract Limit
300,000 contracts900,000 contracts.

The purpose of the proposed rule change is to extend the Pilot Program for an additional six month period. The Exchange believes that extending the Pilot Program for six months is warranted due to the positive feedback from members and for the reasons cited in the original rule filing that proposed the adoption of the Pilot Program.[7] Additionally, the Exchange represents that it has not experienced any problems or difficulties relating to the Pilot Program since its inception. For these reasons, the Exchange requests that the Commission extend the Pilot Start Printed Page 48997Program for an additional six month period.

2. Statutory Basis

The Exchange believes that its proposal is consistent with section 6(b) of the Act [8] in general, and furthers the objective of section 6(b)(5) of the Act [9] in particular, in that it is designed to promote just and equitable principles of trade and to protect investors and the public interest.

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

The proposed rule change does not impose any burden on competition.

C. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change Received From Members, Participants, or Others

The Exchange has not solicited, and does not intend to solicit, comments on this proposed rule change. The Exchange has not received any unsolicited written comments from members or other interested parties.

III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action

Because the forgoing rule change does not: (1) Significantly affect the protection of investors or the public interest; (2) impose any significant burden on competition; and (3) become operative for 30 days after the date of this filing, or such shorter time as the Commission may designate, it has become effective pursuant to section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act [10] and Rule 19b-4(f)(6) thereunder.[11]

A proposed rule change filed under 19b-4(f)(6) normally may not become operative prior to 30 days after the date of filing.[12] However, Rule 19b-4(f)(6)(iii) [13] permits the Commission to designate a shorter time if such action is consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest. The Exchange has requested that the Commission waive the five-day pre-filing notice requirement and the 30-day pre-operative delay. The Commission is exercising its authority to waive the five-day pre-filing requirement and believes that waiver of the 30-day pre-operative delay is consistent with the protection of investors and in the public interest. Waiving the five-day pre-filing requirement and 30-day pre-operative delay will allow the Pilot Program to continue uninterrupted.[14]

At any time within 60 days of the filing of the proposed rule change, the Commission may summarily abrogate such rule change if it appears to the Commission that such action is necessary or appropriate in the public interest, for the protection of investors, or otherwise in furtherance of the Act.

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. Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:

Electronic Comments

Paper Comments

  • Send paper comments in triplicate to Jonathan G. Katz, Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, Station Place, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549-9303.

All submissions should refer to File No. SR-ISE-2005-39. 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, please use only one method. The Commission will post all comments on the Commission's Internet Web site (http://www.sec.gov/​rules/​sro.shtml). 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, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549. Copies of such filing will also be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the ISE. All comments received will be posted without change; the Commission does not edit personal identifying information from submissions. You should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly. All submissions should refer to File No. SR-ISE-2005-39 and should be submitted on or before September 12, 2005.

Start Signature

For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, pursuant to delegated authority.15

Margaret H. McFarland,

Deputy Secretary.

End Signature End Preamble

Footnotes

5.  The Pilot Program is set to expire on August 23, 2005. See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 51295 (March 2, 2005), 70 FR 11292 (March 8, 2005) (notice of filing and immediate effectiveness of File No. SR-ISE-2005-14) (“Pilot Program Notice”).

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6.  Except when the Pilot Program is in effect.

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7.  See Pilot Program Notice, supra note 5.

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12.  17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6)(iii).

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14.  For the purposes only of waiving the operative date of this proposal, the Commission has considered the proposed rule's impact on efficiency, competition, and capital formation. 15 U.S.C. 78c(f).

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[FR Doc. E5-4550 Filed 8-19-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8010-01-P