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Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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

Existing Collection in Use Without an OMB Number: Rule 8c-1; SEC File No. 270-455; OMB Control No. 3235-0514.

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 (“Commission”) is soliciting comments on the collection of information summarized below. The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget for Approval.

Rule 8c-1 (17 CFR 240.8c-1) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. 78a et seq.) generally prohibits a broker-dealer from using its customers' securities as collateral to finance its own trading, speculating, or underwriting transactions. More specifically, the rule states three main principles: first, that a broker-dealer is prohibited from commingling the securities of different customers as collateral for a loan without the consent of each customer; second, that a broker-dealer cannot commingle customers' securities with its own securities under the same pledge; and third, that a broker-dealer can only pledge its customers' securities to the extent that customers are in debt to the broker-dealer. See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 2690 (November 15, 1940); Securities Exchange Act Release No. 9428 (December 29, 1971). Pursuant to Rule 8c-1, respondents must collect information necessary to prevent the hypothecation of customer accounts in contravention of the rule, issue and retain copies of notices to the pledgee of hypothecation of customer accounts in accordance with the rule, and collect written consents from customers in accordance with the rule. The information is necessary to ensure compliance with the rule, and to advise customers of the rule's protections.

There are approximately 111 respondents per year (i.e., broker-dealers that conducted business with the public, filed Part II of the FOCUS Report, did not claim an exemption from the Reserve Formula computation, and reported that they had a bank loan during at least one quarter of the current year) that require an aggregate total of 2,498 hours to comply with the rule. Each of these approximately 111 Start Printed Page 66806registered broker-dealers makes an estimated 45 annual responses, for an aggregate total of 4,995 responses per year. Each response takes approximately 0.5 hours to complete. Thus, the total compliance burden per year is 2,498 burden hours. The approximate cost per hour is $59, resulting in a total cost of compliance for the respondents of approximately $147,382 (2,498 hours @ $59 per hour).

Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be 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: Jeffrey Heslop, Acting Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, c/o Remi Pavlik-Simon, 6432 General Green Way, Alexandria, Virginia 22312 or send an e-mail to:

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Dated: October 25, 2010.

Florence E. Harmon,

Deputy Secretary.

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[FR Doc. 2010-27366 Filed 10-28-10; 8:45 am]