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Notice

AdvisorShares Investments, LLC and AdvisorShares Trust; Notice of Application

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Start Preamble May 6, 2010.

AGENCY:

Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”).

ACTION:

Notice of an application for an order under section 6(c) of the Investment Company Act of 1940 (“Act”) for an exemption from sections 2(a)(32), 5(a)(1), 22(d) and 22(e) of the Act and rule 22c-1 under the Act, under sections 6(c) and 17(b) of the Act for an exemption from sections 17(a)(1) and (a)(2) of the Act, and under section 12(d)(1)(J) of the Act for an exemption from sections 12(d)(1)(A) and (B) of the Act.

Applicants:

AdvisorShares Investments, LLC (the “Advisor”) and AdvisorShares Trust (the “Trust”).

Summary of Application:

Applicants request an order that permits: (a) Series of certain open-end management investment companies to issue shares (“Shares”) redeemable in large aggregations only (“Creation Units”); (b) secondary market transactions in Shares to occur at negotiated market prices; (c) certain series to pay redemption proceeds, under certain circumstances, more than seven days from the tender of Shares for redemption; (d) certain affiliated persons of the series to deposit securities into, and receive securities from, the series in connection with the purchase and redemption of Creation Units; and (e) certain registered management investment companies and unit investment trusts outside of the Start Printed Page 26816same group of investment companies as the series to acquire Shares.

Filing Dates:

The application was filed on July 28, 2009, and amended on December 18, 2009, and April 13, 2010. Applicants have agreed to file an amendment during the notice period, the substance of which is reflected in this notice.

Hearing or Notification of Hearing:

An order granting the requested relief will be issued unless the Commission orders a hearing. Interested persons may request a hearing by writing to the Commission's Secretary and serving applicants with a copy of the request, personally or by mail. Hearing requests should be received by the Commission by 5:30 p.m. on May 27, 2010, and should be accompanied by proof of service on applicants, in the form of an affidavit or, for lawyers, a certificate of service. Hearing requests should state the nature of the writer's interest, the reason for the request, and the issues contested. Persons who wish to be notified of a hearing may request notification by writing to the Commission's Secretary.

ADDRESSES:

Secretary, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549-1090. Applicants: 3 Bethesda Metro Center, Suite 700, Bethesda, MD 20814.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Deepak T. Pai, Senior Counsel, at (202) 551-6876 or Michael W. Mundt, Assistant Director, at (202) 551-6821 (Division of Investment Management, Office of Investment Company Regulation).

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The following is a summary of the application. The complete application may be obtained via the Commission's Web site by searching for the file number, or an applicant using the Company name box, at http://www.sec.gov/​search/​search.htm or by calling (202) 551-8090.

Applicants' Representations

1. The Trust, a statutory trust established under the laws of Delaware, is registered with the Commission as an open-end management investment company. The Applicants are requesting relief with respect to the WCM/BNY Mellon Focused Growth ADR ETF (“AADR Fund”), an existing series of the Trust. The AADR Fund will invest primarily in American Depositary Receipts (“ADRs”) included in the Bank of New York Mellon Classic ADR Index. The investment objective of the AADR Fund is to seek long-term capital appreciation.

2. Applicants are requesting relief with respect to the AADR Fund and future series of the Trust or of other open-end management investment companies that may be created in the future (“Future Funds”).[1] References to the “Funds” include the AADR Fund and Future Funds. Any Future Fund will (a) be advised by the Advisor or an entity controlled by or under common control with the Advisor and (b) comply with the terms and conditions stated in the application. Each Fund will have a distinct investment objective that is different than that of the other Funds, and each Fund will attempt to achieve its investment objective by utilizing an “active” management strategy. Funds may invest in equity securities or fixed-income securities traded in the U.S. or non-U.S. markets, including depositary receipts (“Depositary Receipts”).[2] The Funds will not invest in options contracts, futures contracts or swap agreements.

3. The Advisor, a Delaware limited liability company, is registered as an investment adviser under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 (the “Advisers Act”) and will be the investment adviser to the AADR Fund and any Future Fund. The Trust anticipates that Funds may engage sub-advisers (“Sub-Advisors”). Any Sub-Advisor will be registered under the Advisers Act. A broker-dealer registered under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Exchange Act”) will be the principal underwriter and distributor of the Creation Units of Shares (the “Distributor”).

4. Applicants anticipate that the price of a Share will range from $20 to $200, and that Creation Units will consist of 25,000 or more Shares. All orders to purchase Creation Units must be placed with the Distributor by or through an “Authorized Participant,” which is a participant in the Depository Trust Company (“DTC,” and such participants “DTC Participants”) that has executed a “Participant Agreement” with the Distributor. Persons purchasing Creation Units from a Fund must make an in-kind tender of shares of specified securities (“Deposit Securities”) together with an amount of cash specified by the Advisor (the “Cash Amount”), plus the applicable Transaction Fee, as defined below. The Deposit Securities and the Cash Amount collectively are referred to as the “Creation Deposit.” The Cash Amount is equal to the difference between the net asset value (“NAV”) of a Creation Unit and the market value of the Deposit Securities.[3] The Trust may also permit, in its discretion and with respect to one or more Funds, under certain circumstances, an in-kind purchaser to substitute cash in lieu of depositing some or all of the requisite Deposit Securities.

5. An investor purchasing a Creation Unit from a Fund will be charged a fee (“Transaction Fee”) to protect existing shareholders from the dilutive costs associated with the purchase of Creation Units.[4] The Distributor will deliver a confirmation and prospectus (“Prospectus”) to the purchaser. In addition, the Distributor will maintain a record of the instructions given to the Trust to implement the delivery of Shares.

6. Purchasers of Shares in Creation Units may hold such Shares or may sell such Shares into the secondary market. Shares will be listed and traded on a Listing Market. It is expected that one or more member firms will be designated to act as a specialist and maintain a market for the Shares trading on the Listing Market (the “Exchange Specialist”).[5] The price of Shares trading Start Printed Page 26817on the Listing Market will be based on a current bid/offer market. Transactions involving the sale of Shares on the Listing Market will be subject to customary brokerage commissions and charges.

7. Applicants expect that purchasers of Creation Units will include institutional investors and arbitrageurs (which could include institutional investors). Applicants expect that secondary market purchasers of Shares will include both institutional investors and retail investors.[6] Applicants state that the price at which Shares trade will be disciplined by arbitrage opportunities created by the option continually to purchase or redeem Shares in Creation Units, which should help ensure that Shares will not trade at a material discount or premium in relation to their NAV.

8. Shares may be redeemed only if tendered in Creation Units. Redemption requests must be placed by or through an Authorized Participant. Shares in Creation Units will be redeemable in exchange for a basket of securities (“Redemption Securities”) that in most cases will be the same as the Deposit Securities required of investors purchasing Creation Units on the same day. A Fund may make redemptions partly in cash in lieu of transferring one or more Redemption Securities.[7] Depending on whether the NAV of a Creation Unit is higher or lower than the market value of the Redemption Securities, the redeemer of a Creation Unit will either receive from or pay to the Fund a Cash Amount. The redeeming investor also must pay to the Fund a Transaction Fee to cover custodial costs.

9. Applicants state that the Funds must comply with the federal securities laws in accepting Deposit Securities and satisfying redemptions with Redemption Securities, including that the Deposit Securities and Redemption Securities are sold in transactions that would be exempt from registration under the Securities Act.[8] The specified Deposit Securities and Redemption Securities will generally correspond pro rata to a Fund's portfolio securities (“Portfolio Securities”).

10. The Trust will not be advertised or marketed or otherwise held out as a traditional open-end investment company or a mutual fund. Instead, each Fund will be marketed as an “actively-managed exchange-traded fund.” All marketing materials that describe the features or method of obtaining, buying or selling Creation Units, or Shares traded on the Listing Market, or refer to redeemability, will prominently disclose that Shares are not individually redeemable shares and will disclose that the Beneficial Owners may acquire those Shares from the Fund, or tender those Shares for redemption to the Fund in Creation Units only. The same approach will be followed in connection with the statement of additional information (“SAI”), shareholder reports and investor educational materials issued or circulated in connection with the Shares. Copies of annual and semi-annual shareholder reports will also be provided to the DTC Participants for distribution to Beneficial Owners of Shares.

11. The Trust (or the Listing Market) intends to maintain a Web site that will include the Prospectus and SAI, and additional quantitative information that is updated on a daily basis, including daily trading volume, closing price and closing NAV for each Fund. On each Business Day, before commencement of trading in Shares on a Fund's Listing Market, the Fund will disclose on its Web site the identities and quantities of the Portfolio Securities and other assets held by the Fund that will form the basis for the Fund's calculation of NAV at the end of the Business Day.[9]

Applicants' Legal Analysis

1. Applicants request an order under section 6(c) of the Act for an exemption from sections 2(a)(32), 5(a)(1), 22(d) and 22(e) of the Act and rule 22c-1 under the Act, under sections 6(c) and 17(b) of the Act for an exemption from sections 17(a)(1) and (a)(2) of the Act, and under section 12(d)(1)(J) of the Act for an exemption from sections 12(d)(1)(A) and 12(d)(1)(B) of the Act.

2. Section 6(c) of the Act provides that the Commission may exempt any person, security or transaction, or any class of persons, securities or transactions, from any provision of the Act, if and to the extent that such exemption is necessary or appropriate in the public interest and consistent with the protection of investors and the purposes fairly intended by the policy and provisions of the Act. Section 17(b) of the Act authorizes the Commission to exempt a proposed transaction from section 17(a) of the Act if evidence establishes that the terms of the transaction, including the consideration to be paid or received, are reasonable and fair and do not involve overreaching on the part of any person concerned, and the proposed transaction is consistent with the policies of the registered investment company and the general provisions of the Act. Section 12(d)(1)(J) of the Act provides that the Commission may exempt any person, security, or transaction, or any class or classes of persons, securities or transactions, from any provision of section 12(d)(1) if the exemption is consistent with the public interest and the protection of investors.

Sections 5(a)(1) and 2(a)(32) of the Act

3. Section 5(a)(1) of the Act defines an “open-end company” as a management investment company that is offering for sale or has outstanding any redeemable security of which it is the issuer. Section 2(a)(32) of the Act defines a redeemable security as any security, other than short-term paper, under the terms of which the holder, upon its presentation to the issuer, is entitled to receive approximately a proportionate share of the issuer's current net assets, Start Printed Page 26818or the cash equivalent. Applicants request an order to permit the Trust to register as an open-end management investment company and issue Shares that are redeemable in Creation Units only. Applicants state that each investor is entitled to purchase or redeem Creation Units rather than trade the individual Shares in the secondary market. Applicants further state that because of the arbitrage possibilities created by the redeemability of Creation Units, it is expected that the market price of an individual Share will not vary much from its NAV.

Section 22(d) of the Act and Rule 22c-1 Under the Act

4. Section 22(d) of the Act, among other things, prohibits a dealer from selling a redeemable security, which is currently being offered to the public by or through a principal underwriter, except at a current public offering price described in the prospectus. Rule 22c-1 under the Act generally requires that a dealer selling, redeeming, or repurchasing a redeemable security do so only at a price based on its NAV.

Applicants state that secondary market trading in Shares will take place at negotiated prices, rather than at the current offering price described in the Fund's Prospectus. Thus, purchases and sales of Shares in the secondary market will not comply with section 22(d) of the Act and rule 22c-1 under the Act. Applicants request an exemption under section 6(c) from these provisions.

5. Applicants assert that the concerns sought to be addressed by section 22(d) of the Act and rule 22c-1 under the Act with respect to pricing are equally satisfied by the proposed method of pricing Shares. Applicants maintain that while there is little legislative history regarding section 22(d), its provisions, as well as those of rule 22c-1, appear to have been intended (a) to prevent dilution caused by certain riskless-trading schemes by principal underwriters and contract dealers, (b) to prevent unjust discrimination or preferential treatment among buyers, and (c) to ensure an orderly distribution system of shares by contract dealers by eliminating price competition from non-contract dealers who could offer investors shares at less than the published sales price and who could pay investors a little more than the published redemption price.

6. Applicants believe that none of these purposes will be thwarted by permitting Shares to trade in the secondary market at negotiated prices. Applicants state that (a) secondary market transactions in Shares would not cause dilution for owners of such Shares because such transactions do not directly involve Fund assets, and (b) to the extent different prices exist during a given trading day, or from day to day, such variances occur as a result of third-party market forces, such as supply and demand. Therefore, applicants assert that secondary market transactions in Shares will not lead to discrimination or preferential treatment among purchasers. Finally, applicants contend that the proposed distribution system will be orderly because arbitrage activity will ensure that the difference between the market price of Shares and their NAV remains narrow.

Section 22(e)

7. Section 22(e) of the Act generally prohibits a registered investment company from suspending the right of redemption or postponing the date of payment of redemption proceeds for more than seven days after the tender of a security for redemption. Applicants observe that the settlement of redemptions of Creation Units of Funds that invest in foreign equity and/or fixed income securities (“Foreign Funds”) and Funds that invest in foreign and domestic equity and/or fixed income securities (“Global Funds”) is contingent not only on the settlement cycle of the U.S. securities markets but also on the delivery cycles present in foreign markets in which those Funds invest. Applicants have been advised that, under certain circumstances, the delivery cycles for transferring Portfolio Securities to redeeming investors, coupled with local market holiday schedules, will require a delivery process of up to 12 calendar days. Applicants therefore request relief from section 22(e) in order to provide payment or satisfaction of redemptions within the maximum number of calendar days required for such payment or satisfaction in the principal local markets where transactions in the Portfolio Securities of each Foreign Fund or Global Fund customarily clear and settle, but in all cases no later than 12 days following the tender of a Creation Unit.[10] With respect to Future Funds that are Foreign Funds or Global Funds, applicants seek the same relief from section 22(e) only to the extent that circumstances exist similar to those described in the application.

8. Applicants submit that Congress adopted section 22(e) to prevent unreasonable, undisclosed or unforeseen delays in the actual payment of redemption proceeds. Applicants state that allowing redemption payments for Creation Units of a Fund to be made within the number of days indicated above would not be inconsistent with the spirit and intent of section 22(e). Applicants state the SAI will disclose those local holidays (over the period of at least one year following the date of the SAI), if any, that are expected to prevent the delivery of redemption proceeds in seven calendar days and the maximum number of days needed to deliver the proceeds for each affected Foreign Fund or Global Fund. Applicants are not seeking relief from section 22(e) with respect to Foreign Funds and Global Funds that do not effect creations or redemptions in-kind.

Section 12(d)(1)

9. Section 12(d)(1)(A) of the Act prohibits a registered investment company from acquiring shares of an investment company if the securities represent more than 3% of the total outstanding voting stock of the acquired company, more than 5% of the total assets of the acquiring company, or, together with the securities of any other investment companies, more than 10% of the total assets of the acquiring company. Section 12(d)(1)(B) of the Act prohibits a registered open-end investment company, its principal underwriter, or any other broker or dealer from selling its shares to another investment company if the sale will cause the acquiring company to own more than 3% of the acquired company's voting stock, or if the sale will cause more than 10% of the acquired company's voting stock to be owned by investment companies generally.

10. Applicants request that the order permit registered management investment companies and unit investment trusts (“UITs”) that are not advised or sponsored by the Advisor or an entity controlling, controlled by or under common control with the Advisor, and not part of the same “group of investment companies” as defined in section 12(d)(1)(G)(ii) of the Act as the Funds, to acquire Shares beyond the limits of section 12(d)(1)(A) of the Act (such management companies are referred to as the “Acquiring Management Companies,” such UITs are referred to as “Acquiring Trusts,” and Acquiring Management Companies and Acquiring Trusts are collectively referred to as the “Acquiring Funds”). The requested exemptions would also permit each Fund, its principal underwriter and any broker or dealer registered under the Exchange Act to Start Printed Page 26819sell Shares to an Acquiring Fund beyond the limits of section 12(d)(1)(B).

11. Each investment adviser to an Acquiring Management Company within the meaning of section 2(a)(20)(A) of the Act (“Acquiring Fund Advisor”) will be registered as an investment adviser under the Advisers Act. No Acquiring Fund Advisor or sponsor of an Acquiring Trust (“Sponsor”) will control, be controlled by or be under common control with the Advisor. Each Acquiring Management Company may also have one or more investment advisers within the meaning of section 2(a)(20)(B) of the Act (each, an “Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor”). Any Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor will be registered under the Advisers Act. No Acquiring Fund will be in the same group of investment companies as the Funds. Pursuant to the terms and conditions of the requested order, each Acquiring Fund will enter into an Acquiring Fund Agreement, as defined below, with the relevant Fund(s).

12. Applicants assert that the proposed transactions will not lead to any of the abuses that section 12(d)(1) was designed to prevent. Applicants submit that the proposed conditions to the requested relief address the concerns underlying the limits in section 12(d)(1), which include concerns about undue influence, excessive layering of fees and overly complex structures.

13. Applicants submit that their proposed conditions address any concerns regarding the potential for undue influence. An Acquiring Fund or Acquiring Fund Affiliate [11] will not cause any existing or potential investment in a Fund to influence the terms of any services or transactions between the Acquiring Fund or an Acquiring Fund Affiliate and the Fund or a Fund Affiliate.[12] An Acquiring Fund's Advisory Group or an Acquiring Fund's Sub-Advisory Group will not control a Fund within the meaning of section 2(a)(9) of the Act. An “Acquiring Fund's Advisory Group” is the Acquiring Fund Advisor, Sponsor, any person controlling, controlled by or under common control with the Acquiring Fund Advisor or Sponsor, and any investment company or issuer that would be an investment company but for section 3(c)(l) or 3(c)(7) of the Act, that is advised or sponsored by the Acquiring Fund Advisor, Sponsor or any person controlling, controlled by or under common control with the Acquiring Fund Advisor or Sponsor. An “Acquiring Fund's Sub-Advisory Group” is any Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor, any person controlling, controlled by, or under common control with the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor, and any investment company or issuer that would be an investment company but for section 3(c)(l) or 3(c)(7) of the Act (or portion of such investment company or issuer) advised or sponsored by the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor or any person controlling, controlled by or under common control with the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor.

14. Applicants also propose a condition to ensure that no Acquiring Fund or Acquiring Fund Affiliate will cause a Fund to purchase a security from an Affiliated Underwriting. An “Affiliated Underwriting” is an offering of securities during the existence of an underwriting or selling syndicate of which a principal underwriter is an Underwriting Affiliate. An “Underwriting Affiliate” is a principal underwriter in any underwriting or selling syndicate that is an officer, director, member of an advisory board, Acquiring Fund Advisor, Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor, Sponsor, or employee of the Acquiring Fund, or a person of which any such officer, director, member of an advisory board, Acquiring Fund Advisor, Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor, Sponsor, or employee is an affiliated person, except any person whose relationship to the Fund is covered by section 10(f) of the Act is not an Underwriting Affiliate.

15. Applicants propose several conditions to address the potential for layering of fees. Applicants note that the board of directors or trustees of an Acquiring Management Company, including a majority of the independent directors or trustees, will be required to find that any fees charged under the Acquiring Management Company's advisory contract(s) are based on services provided that will be in addition to, rather than duplicative of, services provided under the advisory contract(s) of any Fund in which the Acquiring Management Company may invest. Applicants state that any sales charges and/or service fees charged with respect to shares of an Acquiring Fund will not exceed the limits applicable to a fund of funds set forth in NASD Conduct Rule 2830.[13]

16. Applicants submit that the proposed arrangement will not create an overly complex fund structure. Applicants note that a Fund will be prohibited from acquiring securities of any investment company or company relying on section 3(c)(1) or 3(c)(7) of the Act in excess of the limits contained in section 12(d)(1)(A) of the Act, except to the extent permitted by exemptive relief from the Commission permitting the Fund to purchase shares of other investment companies for short-term cash management purposes.

17. To ensure that an Acquiring Fund is aware of the terms and conditions of the requested order, the Acquiring Fund must enter into an agreement with the respective Fund (“Acquiring Fund Agreement”). The Acquiring Fund Agreement will include an acknowledgment from the Acquiring Fund that it may rely on the order only to invest in the Fund and not in any other investment company.

Sections 17(a)(1) and (2) of the Act

18. Section 17(a)(1) and (2) of the Act generally prohibit an affiliated person of a registered investment company, or an affiliated person of such a person (“second tier affiliate”), from selling any security to or purchasing any security from the company. Section 2(a)(3) of the Act defines “affiliated person” to include any person directly or indirectly owning, controlling, or holding with power to vote 5% or more of the outstanding voting securities of the other person and any person directly or indirectly controlling, controlled by, or under common control with, the other person. Section 2(a)(9) of the Act provides that a control relationship will be presumed where one person owns more than 25% of another person's voting securities. The Funds may be deemed to be controlled by the Advisor or an entity controlling, controlled by or under common control with the Advisor and hence affiliated persons of each other. In addition, the Funds may be deemed to be under common control with any other registered investment company (or series thereof) advised by the Advisor or an entity controlling, controlled by or under common control with the Advisor (an “Affiliated Fund”).

19. Applicants request an exemption from section 17(a) under sections 6(c) and 17(b) to permit in-kind purchases and redemptions by persons that are affiliated persons or second tier affiliates of the Funds solely by virtue of one or more of the following: (1) Holding 5% or more, or more than 25%, Start Printed Page 26820of the outstanding Shares of the Trust or one or more Funds; (2) an affiliation with a person with an ownership interest described in (1); or (3) holding 5% or more, or more than 25%, of the shares of one or more Affiliated Funds. Applicants also request an exemption in order to permit a Fund to sell its Shares to and redeem its Shares from an Acquiring Fund of which the Fund is an affiliated person or an affiliated person of an affiliated person.[14]

20. Applicants contend that no useful purpose would be served by prohibiting the affiliated persons described above from making in-kind purchases or in-kind redemptions of Shares of a Fund in Creation Units. Both the deposit procedures for in-kind purchases of Creation Units and the redemption procedures for in-kind redemptions will be effected in exactly the same manner for all purchases and redemptions. Deposit Securities and Redemption Securities will be valued in the same manner as those Portfolio Securities currently held by the relevant Funds. Therefore, applicants state that the in-kind purchases and redemptions will afford no opportunity for the specified affiliated persons of a Fund to effect a transaction detrimental to other holders of Shares. Applicants do not believe that in-kind purchases and redemptions will result in abusive self-dealing or overreaching of the Fund.

21. Applicants also submit that the sale of Shares to and redemption of Shares from an Acquiring Fund satisfies the standards for relief under sections 17(b) and 6(c) of the Act. Any consideration paid for the purchase or redemption of Shares directly from a Fund will be based on the NAV of the Fund.[15] The Acquiring Fund Agreement will require any Acquiring Fund that purchases Creation Units directly from a Fund to represent that the purchase will be accomplished in compliance with the investment restrictions of the Acquiring Fund and will be consistent with the investment policies set forth in the Acquiring Fund's registration statement. Applicants believe that the proposed transactions are consistent with the general purposes of the Act and appropriate in the public interest.

Applicant's Conditions

Applicants agree that any order of the Commission granting the requested relief will be subject to the following conditions: [16]

Actively-Managed Exchange-Traded Fund Relief

1. Neither the Trust nor any Fund will be advertised or marketed as an open-end investment company or mutual fund. Each Fund's Prospectus will prominently disclose that the Fund is an actively managed exchange-traded fund. Each Prospectus also will prominently disclose that Shares are not individually redeemable and will disclose that owners of Shares may acquire those Shares from a Fund and tender those Shares to a Fund for redemption in Creation Units only. Any advertising material that describes the purchase or sale of Creation Units or refers to redeemability will prominently disclose that the Shares are not individually redeemable and that owners of the Shares may acquire those Shares from the Fund and tender those Shares for redemption to the Fund in Creation Units only.

2. Each Fund's Prospectus will clearly disclose that, for purposes of the Act, Shares are issued by a registered investment company, and that the acquisition of Shares by investment companies and companies relying on sections 3(c)(1) or 3(c)(7) of the Act is subject to the restrictions of section 12(d)(1) of the Act, except as permitted by an exemptive order that permits registered investment companies to invest in a Fund beyond the limits of section 12(d)(1), subject to certain terms and conditions, including that the registered investment company enter into an Acquiring Fund Agreement with the Fund regarding the terms of the investment.

3. The Web site for the Funds, which will be publicly accessible at no charge, will contain the following information, on a per Share basis, for each Fund: (a) the prior Business Day's NAV and the reported closing price, and a calculation of the premium or discount of the closing price against such NAV; and (b) data in chart format displaying the frequency distribution of discounts and premiums of the closing price against the NAV, within appropriate ranges, for each of the four previous calendar quarters (or for the life of the Fund, if shorter).

4. The Prospectus and annual report for each Fund will also include: (a) the information listed in condition 3(b), (i) in the case of the Prospectus, for the most recently completed year (and the most recently completed quarter or quarters, as applicable) and (ii) in the case of the annual report, for the immediately preceding five years (or for the life of the Fund, if shorter); and (b) the cumulative total return and the average annual total return based on NAV and closing price, calculated on a per Share basis for one-, five-, and ten-year periods (or life of the Fund, if shorter).

5. As long as a Fund operates in reliance on the requested order, its Shares will be listed on a Listing Market.

6. On each Business Day, before commencement of trading in Shares on a Fund's Listing Market, the Fund will disclose on its Web site the identities and quantities of the Portfolio Securities and other assets held by the Fund that will form the basis for the Fund's calculation of NAV at the end of the Business Day.

7. The Advisor or any Sub-Advisors, directly or indirectly, will not cause any Authorized Participant (or any investor on whose behalf an Authorized Participant may transact with the Fund) to acquire any Deposit Security for a Fund through a transaction in which the Fund could not engage directly.

8. The requested order will expire on the effective date of any Commission rule under the Act that provides relief permitting the operation of actively-managed exchange-traded funds.

Section 12(d)(1) Relief

9. The members of an Acquiring Fund's Advisory Group will not control (individually or in the aggregate) a Fund within the meaning of section 2(a)(9) of the Act. The members of an Acquiring Fund's Sub-Advisory Group will not control (individually or in the aggregate) a Fund within the meaning of section 2(a)(9) of the Act. If, as a result of a decrease in the outstanding voting securities of a Fund, the Acquiring Fund's Advisory Group or the Acquiring Fund's Sub-Advisory Group, each in the aggregate, becomes a holder of more than 25 percent of the outstanding voting securities of a Fund, it will vote Start Printed Page 26821its Shares in the same proportion as the vote of all other holders of the Shares. This condition does not apply to the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisory Group with respect to a Fund for which the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor or a person controlling, controlled by, or under common control with the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor acts as the investment adviser within the meaning of section 2(a)(20)(A) of the Act.

10. No Acquiring Fund or Acquiring Fund Affiliate will cause any existing or potential investment by the Acquiring Fund in a Fund to influence the terms of any services or transactions between the Acquiring Fund or an Acquiring Fund Affiliate and the Fund or a Fund Affiliate.

11. The board of directors or trustees of an Acquiring Management Company, including a majority of the disinterested directors or trustees, will adopt procedures reasonably designed to ensure that the Acquiring Fund Advisor and any Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor are conducting the investment program of the Acquiring Management Company without taking into account any consideration received by the Acquiring Management Company or an Acquiring Fund Affiliate from a Fund or a Fund Affiliate in connection with any services or transactions.

12. Once an investment by an Acquiring Fund in Shares exceeds the limits in section 12(d)(1)(A)(i) of the Act, the board of trustees of the Trust (“Board”), including a majority of the disinterested trustees, will determine that any consideration paid by the Fund to an Acquiring Fund or an Acquiring Fund Affiliate in connection with any services or transactions: (i) Is fair and reasonable in relation to the nature and quality of the services and benefits received by the Fund; (ii) is within the range of consideration that the Fund would be required to pay to another unaffiliated entity in connection with the same services or transactions; and (iii) does not involve overreaching on the part of any person concerned. This condition does not apply with respect to any services or transactions between a Fund and its investment adviser(s), or any person controlling, controlled by or under common control with such investment adviser(s).

13. No Acquiring Fund or Acquiring Fund Affiliate (except to the extent it is acting in its capacity as an investment adviser to a Fund) will cause the Fund to purchase a security in any Affiliated Underwriting.

14. The Board, including a majority of the independent trustees, will adopt procedures reasonably designed to monitor any purchases of securities by the Fund in an Affiliated Underwriting, once an investment by an Acquiring Fund in the securities of the Fund exceeds the limit of section 12(d)(1)(A)(i) of the Act, including any purchases made directly from an Underwriting Affiliate. The Board will review these purchases periodically, but no less frequently than annually, to determine whether the purchases were influenced by the investment by the Acquiring Fund in the Fund. The Board will consider, among other things: (i) Whether the purchases were consistent with the investment objectives and policies of the Fund; (ii) how the performance of securities purchased in an Affiliated Underwriting compares to the performance of comparable securities purchased during a comparable period of time in underwritings other than Affiliated Underwritings or to a benchmark such as a comparable market index; and (iii) whether the amount of securities purchased by the Fund in Affiliated Underwritings and the amount purchased directly from an Underwriting Affiliate have changed significantly from prior years. The Board will take any appropriate actions based on its review, including, if appropriate, the institution of procedures designed to assure that purchases of securities in Affiliated Underwritings are in the best interest of shareholders of the Fund.

15. Each Fund will maintain and preserve permanently in an easily accessible place a written copy of the procedures described in the preceding condition, and any modifications to such procedures, and will maintain and preserve for a period of not less than six years from the end of the fiscal year in which any purchase in an Affiliated Underwriting occurred, the first two years in an easily accessible place, a written record of each purchase of securities in Affiliated Underwritings, once an investment by an Acquiring Fund in the securities of the Fund exceeds the limit of section 12(d)(1)(A)(i) of the Act, setting forth from whom the securities were acquired, the identity of the underwriting syndicate's members, the terms of the purchase, and the information or materials upon which the determinations of the Board were made.

16. Before investing in Shares in excess of the limits in section 12(d)(1)(A), each Acquiring Fund and the Fund will execute an Acquiring Fund Agreement stating, without limitation, that their boards of directors or trustees and their investment adviser(s), or the Sponsor or trustee of an Acquiring Trust (“Trustee”), as applicable, understand the terms and conditions of the order, and agree to fulfill their responsibilities under the order. At the time of its investment in Shares in excess of the limit in section 12(d)(1)(A)(i), an Acquiring Fund will notify the Fund of the investment. At such time, the Acquiring Fund will also transmit to the Fund a list of the names of each Acquiring Fund Affiliate and Underwriting Affiliate. The Acquiring Fund will notify the Fund of any changes to the list of the names as soon as reasonably practicable after a change occurs. The Fund and the Acquiring Fund will maintain and preserve a copy of the order, the Acquiring Fund Agreement, and the list with any updated information for the duration of the investment and for a period of not less than six years thereafter, the first two years in an easily accessible place.

17. The Acquiring Fund Advisor, Trustee or Sponsor, as applicable, will waive fees otherwise payable to it by the Acquiring Fund in an amount at least equal to any compensation (including fees received pursuant to any plan adopted under rule 12b-1 under the Act) received from the Fund by the Acquiring Fund Advisor, Trustee or Sponsor, or an affiliated person of the Acquiring Fund Advisor, Trustee or Sponsor, other than any advisory fees paid to the Acquiring Fund Advisor, Trustee, or Sponsor, or its affiliated person by the Fund, in connection with the investment by the Acquiring Fund in the Fund. Any Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor will waive fees otherwise payable to the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor, directly or indirectly, by the Acquiring Management Company in an amount at least equal to any compensation received from a Fund by the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor, or an affiliated person of the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor, other than any advisory fees paid to the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor or its affiliated person by the Fund, in connection with any investment by the Acquiring Management Company in the Fund made at the direction of the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor. In the event that the Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor waives fees, the benefit of the waiver will be passed through to the Acquiring Management Company.

18. Any sales charges and/or service fees charged with respect to shares of an Acquiring Fund will not exceed the limits applicable to a fund of funds as set forth in NASD Conduct Rule 2830.

19. No Fund will acquire securities of any other investment company or company relying on section 3(c)(1) or 3(c)(7) of the Act in excess of the limits Start Printed Page 26822contained in section 12(d)(1)(A) of the Act, except to the extent permitted by exemptive relief from the Commission permitting the Fund to purchase shares of other investment companies for short-term cash management purposes.

20. Before approving any advisory contract under section 15 of the Act, the board of directors or trustees of each Acquiring Management Company, including a majority of the disinterested directors or trustees, will find that the advisory fees charged under such advisory contract are based on services provided that will be in addition to, rather than duplicative of, the services provided under the advisory contract(s) of any Fund in which the Acquiring Management Company may invest. These findings and their basis will be recorded fully in the minute books of the appropriate Acquiring Management Company.

Start Signature

For the Commission, by the Division of Investment Management, under delegated authority.

Florence E. Harmon,

Deputy Secretary.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

Footnotes

1.  All entities that currently intend to rely on the order are named as applicants. Any other entity that relies on the order in the future will comply with the terms and conditions of the application. An Acquiring Fund (as defined below) may rely on the requested order only to invest in the Funds and not in any other registered investment company.

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2.  Depositary Receipts include ADRs and Global Depositary Receipts (“GDRs”). With respect to ADRs, the depositary is typically a U.S. financial institution and the underlying securities are issued by a foreign issuer. The ADR is registered under the Securities Act of 1933 (“Securities Act”) on Form F-6. ADR trades occur either on a national securities exchange or off-exchange. FINRA Rule 6620 requires all off-exchange transactions in ADRs to be reported within 90 seconds and ADR trade reports to be disseminated on a real-time basis. With respect to GDRs, the depositary may be a foreign or a U.S. entity, and the underlying securities may have a foreign or a U.S. issuer. All GDRs are sponsored and trade on a foreign exchange. No affiliated persons of applicants will serve as the depositary for any Depositary Receipts held by a Fund.

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3.  On each day that the Trust is open, including as required by section 22(e) of the Act (“Business Day”), the Advisor will make available prior to the opening of trading on the Listing Market (as defined below), the list of the names and the required number of shares of each Deposit Security to be included in the Creation Deposit for each Fund, along with the prior day's Cash Amount. The national securities exchange, as defined in section 2(a)(26) of the Act, on which the Shares are listed (a “Listing Market”) will disseminate, every 15 seconds during the Listing Market's regular trading hours, through the facilities of the Consolidated Tape Association (“CTA”), the estimated NAV, which is an amount per Share representing the sum of the estimated Cash Amount effective through and including the previous Business Day, plus the current value of the Deposit Securities, on a per Share basis.

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4.  Where a Fund permits a purchaser to substitute cash in lieu of depositing a portion of the requisite Deposit Securities, the purchaser may be assessed a higher Transaction Fee to offset the cost to the Fund of purchasing such Deposit Securities.

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5.  If Shares are listed on Nasdaq or a similar electronic Listing Market (including NYSE Arca), one or more member firms of that Listing Market will act as market maker (“Market Maker”) and maintain a market for Shares trading on the Listing Market. On Nasdaq, no particular Market Maker would be contractually obligated to make a market in Shares. However, the listing requirements on Nasdaq, for example, stipulate that at least two Market Makers must be registered in Shares to maintain a listing. In addition, on Nasdaq and NYSE Arca, registered Market Makers are required to make a continuous two-sided market or subject themselves to regulatory sanctions. No Market Maker or Exchange Specialist will be an affiliated person, or an affiliated person of an affiliated person, of the Funds, except within section 2(a)(3)(A) or (C) of the Act due to ownership of Shares.

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6.  Shares will be registered in book-entry form only. DTC or its nominee will be the registered owner of all outstanding Shares. DTC or DTC Participants will maintain records reflecting owners of Shares (“Beneficial Owners”).

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7.  Funds that invest in fixed income securities (“Fixed Income Funds”) may substitute a cash-in-lieu amount to replace any Deposit Security or Redemption Security that is a to-be-announced transaction (“TBA Transaction”). A TBA transaction is a method of trading mortgage-backed securities. In a TBA Transaction, the buyer and seller agree upon general trade parameters such as agency, settlement date, par amount and price. The actual pools delivered generally are determined two days prior to the settlement date. The amount of substituted cash in the case of TBA Transactions will be equivalent to the value of the TBA Transaction listed as a Deposit Security or Redemption Security.

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8.  In accepting Deposit Securities and satisfying redemptions with Redemption Securities that are restricted securities eligible for resale pursuant to rule 144A under the Securities Act, the relevant Funds will comply with the conditions of rule 144A, including in satisfying redemptions with such rule 144A eligible restricted Redemption Securities. The Prospectus will also state that an Authorized Participant that is not a “Qualified Institutional Buyer” as defined in rule 144A under the Securities Act will not be able to receive, as part of a redemption, restricted securities eligible for resale under rule 144A.

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9.  Under accounting procedures followed by the Funds, trades made on the prior Business Day (“T”) will be booked and reflected in NAV on the current Business Day (“T+1”). Accordingly, the Funds will be able to disclose at the beginning of the Business Day the portfolio that will form the basis for the NAV calculation at the end of the Business Day.

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10.  Applicants acknowledge that no relief obtained from the requirements of section 22(e) will affect any obligations that it may otherwise have under rule 15c6-1 under the Exchange Act. Rule 15c6-1 requires that most securities transactions be settled within three business days of the trade date.

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11.  An “Acquiring Fund Affiliate” is defined as the Acquiring Fund Advisor, Acquiring Fund Sub-Advisor(s), any Sponsor, promoter or principal underwriter of an Acquiring Fund and any person controlling, controlled by or under common control with any of these entities.

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12.  A “Fund Affiliate” is defined as an investment adviser, promoter or principal underwriter of a Fund and any person controlling, controlled by or under common control with any of these entities.

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13.  Any references to NASD Conduct Rule 2830 include any successor or replacement rule that may be adopted by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

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14.  To the extent that purchases and sales of Shares occur in the secondary market and not through principal transactions directly between an Acquiring Fund and a Fund, relief from section 17(a) would not be necessary. However, the requested relief would apply to direct sales of Shares in Creation Units by a Fund to an Acquiring Fund and redemptions of those Shares. The requested relief is intended to cover the in-kind transactions that would accompany such sales and redemptions.

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15.  Applicants acknowledge that the receipt of compensation by (a) an affiliated person of an Acquiring Fund, or an affiliated person of such person, for the purchase by the Acquiring Fund of Shares or (b) an affiliated person of a Fund, or an affiliated person of such person, for the sale by the Fund of its Shares to an Acquiring Fund, may be prohibited by section 17(e)(1) of the Act. The Acquiring Fund Agreement also will include this acknowledgment.

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16.  All representations and conditions contained in the application that require a Fund to disclose particular information in the Fund's Prospectus and/or annual report shall be effective with respect to the Fund until the time that the Fund complies with the disclosure requirements adopted by the Commission in Investment Company Act Release No. 28584 (Jan. 13, 2009).

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[FR Doc. 2010-11252 Filed 5-11-10; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8010-01-P