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Notice

Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Upon Written Request, Copies Available From: Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of Investor Education and Advocacy, Washington, DC 20549-0213.

Extension:

Rule 27d-2; SEC File No. 270-500; OMB Control No. 3235-0566.

Notice is hereby given that, pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) is soliciting comments on the collections of information under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (15 U.S.C. 80a) (“Act”) summarized below. The Commission plans to submit these collections of information to the Office of Management and Budget for approval.

Rule 27d-2 (17 CFR 270.27d-2) is entitled “Insurance Company Undertaking in Lieu of Segregated Trust Account.” Rule 27d-1 (17 CFR 270.27d-1) [1] under the Act requires the depositor or principal underwriter for an issuer of periodic payment plans to deposit funds into a segregated trust account to provide assurance of its ability to fulfill its refund obligations under sections 27(d) and 27(f).[2] Rule 27d-2 provides an exemption from rule 27d-1 under the Act for depositors or principal underwriters for the issuers of periodic payments plans. In order to comply with the rule: (i) The depositor or principal underwriter must secure from an insurance company a written guarantee of the refund requirements; (ii) the insurance company must satisfy certain financial criteria; and (iii) the depositor or principal underwriter must file as an exhibit to the issuer's registration statement, a copy of the written undertaking, an annual statement that the insurance company has met the requisite financial criteria on a monthly basis, and an annual audited balance sheet.

Rules 27d-1 and 27d-2, which were explicitly authorized by statute, provide assurance that depositors and principal underwriters of issuers have access to sufficient cash to meet the demands of certificate holders who reconsider their decisions to invest in a periodic payment plan. The information collection requirements in rules 27d-1 and 27d-2 enable the Commission to monitor compliance with reserve rules.

Only one registered investment company has issued a new periodic payment plan certificate within the past 18 months, and the principal underwriter or depositor for this sole issuer relies on the exemption in rule 27d-2. The respondent makes approximately three responses per year.[3] The insurance company provides the written undertaking, annual statement, and certified balance sheet at no cost to the respondent. The staff estimates that the respondent spends approximately one hour per year filing the required documents from the insurance company on EDGAR. Thus, we estimate that the annual burden is approximately 1 hour.

The staff believes that rule 27d-2 does not impose any cost burdens other than those arising from the hour burdens discussed above.

The estimates of average burden hours and costs are made solely for the purposes of the Paperwork Reduction Act, and are not derived from a comprehensive or even a representative survey or study of the costs of Commission rules and forms.[4]

Complying with the collection of information requirements of rule 27d-2 is mandatory for depositors or principal underwriters of issuers of periodic payment plans who rely on the rule for an exemption from complying with rule 27d-1 and filing Form N-27D-1 (17 CFR 274.127d-1). The information provided pursuant to rule 27d-2 is public and, therefore, will not be kept confidential.

An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. Start Printed Page 9370

Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information has practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Commission's estimate of the burden of the collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Consideration will be given to comments and suggestions submitted in writing within 60 days of this publication.

Please direct your written comments to R. Corey Booth, Director/Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, C/O Shirley Martinson, 6432 General Green Way, Alexandria, VA 22312; or send an e-mail to: PRA_Mailbox@sec.gov.

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Dated: February 14, 2008.

Florence E. Harmon,

Deputy Secretary.

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Footnotes

1.  The information collection requirements for rule 27d-1 and Form N-27D-1 are covered in a separate Federal Register notice under OMB Control No. 3235-0560.

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2.  The rule sets forth minimum reserve amounts and guidelines for the management and disbursement of the assets in the account. Rule 27d-1(j) directs depositors and principal underwriters annually to make an accounting of their segregated trust accounts on Form N-27D-1, which is filed with the Commission. The form requires depositors and principal underwriters to report deposits to a segregated trust account, including those made pursuant to paragraphs (c) and (e) of the rule. Withdrawals pursuant to paragraph (f) of the rule also must be reported. In addition, the form solicits information regarding the minimum amount required to be maintained under paragraphs (d) and (e) of rule 27d-1.

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3.  The three responses are: (i) obtaining and filing the written undertaking or an amendment to the undertaking, (ii) filing the insurance company's annual statement that the financial conditions were satisfied, and (iii) filing the insurance company's certified balance sheet.

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4.  These estimates are based on telephone interviews between the Commission staff and representatives of depositors or principal underwriters of periodic payment plan issuers.

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[FR Doc. E8-3109 Filed 2-19-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8011-01-P