Pursuant to section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Act”)  and Rule 19b-4 thereunder, notice is hereby given that on December 20, 2007, the Boston Stock Exchange, Inc. (“BSE” 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 substantially by the BSE. On January 7, 2008, the Exchange filed Amendment No. 1 to the proposed rule change. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change, as modified by Amendment No. 1, from interested persons.
I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change
The Exchange proposes to amend the Boston Options Exchange (“BOX”) rules related to Contrary Exercise Advice violations. The text of the proposed rule change is available on the Exchange's Web site (http://www.bostonstock.com), at the BSE'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 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
The Exchange proposes to increase and strengthen the sanctions imposed pursuant to its Minor Rule Violation Plan (“MRVP”) on any member who fails to submit to the Exchange in a timely manner, pursuant to BOX Rules Chapter X, section 2(f), “Contrary Exercise Advice Violations” or exercise instruction relating to the exercise or nonexercise of a noncash-settled equity option. The Exchange believes that increasing the fine levels specified with Start Printed Page 2295respect to both individual members and member organizations and lengthening the surveillance period from a 12-month period to a rolling 24-month period will serve as an effective deterrent to such violative conduct.
In addition, the Exchange, as a member of the Intermarket Surveillance Group (“ISG”) executed and filed on October 29, 2007 with the Commission, a final version of an Agreement pursuant to section 17(d) of the Act (the “17d-2 Agreement”). As set forth in the 17d-2 Agreement, the members of the ISG have agreed that their respective rules concerning the filing of Expiring Exercise Declarations, also referred to as Contrary Exercise Advices are common rules. As a result, the proposal to amend the MRVP will further result in consistency in sanctions among the ISG members that are signatories to the 17d-2 Agreement concerning Contrary Exercise Advice violations.
2. Statutory Basis
The Exchange believes that the proposed rule change is consistent with section 6(b) of the Act, in general, and furthers the objectives of section 6(b)(5) of the Act, in particular, in that it is designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices; to promote just and equitable principles of trade; to protect investors and the public interest in that it is designed 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. Additionally, the Exchange believes that the proposed rule change will promote consistency in minor rule violations and respective SRO reporting obligations as set forth pursuant to Rule 19d-1(c)(2) under the Act, which governs minor rule violation plans.
B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition
BSE does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose any 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
The Exchange neither solicited nor received comments on the proposal.
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. Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:
- Use the Commission's Internet comment form (http://www.sec.gov/rules/sro.shtml); or
- Send an e-mail to email@example.com. Please include File Number SR-BSE-2007-54 on the subject line.
- Send paper comments in triplicate to Nancy M. Morris, Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549-1090.
All submissions should refer to File Number SR-BSE-2007-54. 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, on official business days between the hours of 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Copies of such filing also will be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the BSE. 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 Number SR-BSE-2007-54 and should be submitted on or before February 4, 2008.Start Signature
For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, pursuant to delegated authority.
Florence E. Harmon,
3. Amendment No. 1 revised the proposed rule text to clarify how fines for the third and subsequent offenses would be imposed.Back to Citation
4. See letter to Richard Holley, Senior Special Counsel, Division of Trading and Markets, Commission, from Nyieri Nazarian, Assistant General Counsel, American Stock Exchange LLC (“Amex”), dated October 29, 2007.Back to Citation
5. See Amex Rule 590.Back to Citation
[FR Doc. E8-388 Filed 1-11-08; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8011-01-P