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Submission for OMB Review; 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 31a-1; SEC File No. 270-173; OMB Control No. 3235-0178.

Notice is hereby given that, pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget a request for extension of the previously approved collection of information discussed below.

Rule 31a-1 (17 CFR 270.31a-1) under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (the “Act”) (15 U.S.C. 80a) is entitled “Records to be maintained by registered investment companies, certain majority-owned subsidiaries thereof, and other persons having transactions with registered investment companies.” Rule 31a-1 requires registered investment companies (“funds”), and every underwriter, broker, dealer, or investment adviser that is a majority-owned subsidiary of a fund, to maintain and keep current accounts, books, and other documents which constitute the record forming the basis for financial statements required to be filed pursuant to section 31 of the Act (15 U.S.C. 80a-30) and of the auditor's certificates relating thereto. The rule lists specific records to be maintained by funds. The rule also requires certain underwriters, brokers, dealers, depositors, and Start Printed Page 58548investment advisers to maintain the records that they are required to maintain under federal securities laws. The Commission periodically inspects the operations of funds to insure their compliance with the provisions of the Act and the rules thereunder. The books and records required to be maintained by rule 31a-1 constitute a major focus of the Commission's inspection program.

There are approximately 4218 investment companies registered with the Commission, all of which are required to comply with rule 31a-1. For purposes of determining the burden imposed by rule 31a-1, the Commission staff estimates that each fund is divided into approximately four series, on average, and that each series is required to comply with the recordkeeping requirements of rule 31a-1. Based on conversations with fund representatives, it is estimated that rule 31a-1 imposes an average burden of approximately 1750 hours annually per series for a total of 7000 annual hours per fund. The estimated total annual burden for all 4218 investment companies subject to the rule therefore is approximately 29,526,000 hours. Based on conversations with fund representatives, however, the Commission staff estimates that even absent the requirements of rule 31a-1, 90 percent of the records created pursuant to the rule are the type that generally would be created as a matter of normal business practice and to prepare financial statements, estimated to be approximately 26,573,400 annual hours. Thus, the Commission staff estimates that the total annual burden associated with rule 31a-1 is 2,952,600 hours.

The estimate of average burden hours is made solely for the purposes of the Paperwork Reduction Act, and is not derived from a comprehensive or even a representative survey or study. The collection of information required by rule 31a-1 is mandatory. Responses will not be kept confidential. The records required by rule 31a-1 are required to be preserved pursuant to rule 31a-2 under the Investment Company Act (17 CFR 270.31a-2). Rule 31a-2 requires that certain of these records be preserved permanently, and that others be preserved six years from the end of the fiscal year in which any transaction occurred. In both cases, the records should be kept in an easily accessible place for the first two years. 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.

The public may view the background documentation for this information collection at the following Web site, http://www.reginfo.gov. Comments should be directed to: (i) Desk Officer for the Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Room 10102, New Executive Office Building, Washington, DC 20503, or by sending an e-mail to: Shagufta_Ahmed@omb.eop.gov ; and (ii) Thomas Bayer, Director/Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, c/o Remi Pavlik-Simon, 6432 General Green Way, Alexandria, VA 22312 or send an e-mail to: PRA_Mailbox@sec.gov. Comments must be submitted to OMB within 30 days of this notice.

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September 15, 2011.

Elizabeth M. Murphy,

Secretary.

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[FR Doc. 2011-24177 Filed 9-20-11; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8011-01-P