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Notice

Self-Regulatory Organizations; C2 Options Exchange, Incorporated; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change Relating To Order Routing Rules

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October 9, 2012.

Pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Act”),[1] and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,[2] notice is hereby given that on October 4, 2012, C2 Options Exchange, Incorporated (the “Exchange” or “C2”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) the proposed rule change as described in Items I, II, and III below, which Items have been prepared by the Exchange. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons.

I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change

The Exchange proposes to amend its order routing rules. The text of the proposed rule change is available on the Exchange's Web site (http://www.c2exchange.com/Legal/), at the Exchange's Office of the Secretary, 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 the Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change

1. Purpose

Rule 6.36 governs the Exchange's process for routing sweep orders to other markets pursuant to intermarket linkage rules and states that the Exchange may contract with one or more routing brokers that are not affiliated with the Exchange to route sweep orders to other exchanges. The Rule imposes certain obligations on the Exchange and routing brokers. In particular, Rule 6.36(e) provides that the Exchange will determine the logic that provides when, how and where orders are routed away to other exchanges. Additionally, Rule 6.36(f) provides that a routing broker cannot change the terms of an order or the routing instructions, nor does the routing broker have any discretion about where to route an order.

The proposed rule change adds Interpretation and Policy .01 to Rule 6.36 to clarify that the Rule does not prohibit a routing broker from designating a preferred market-maker (or equivalent market participant) at the other exchange to which an outbound sweep order is being routed. The proposed rule change has no impact on customer orders, which receive the same level of order protection and trade at the best market prices regardless of whether the routing broker designates a preferred market-maker recipient at the destination exchange. The Exchange still makes the sole determination as to which exchange an order will be routed, as well as when and how the order will be routed. Additionally, routing brokers are still prohibited from changing the terms of an order or the Exchange's routing instructions and still have no discretion about to which exchange an order will be routed.

The proposed rule change merely clarifies that a routing broker may indicate which market-maker at the away exchange may trade against the routed order in accordance with the order terms and the Exchange's routing instructions. In other words, if a routing broker preferences a customer order that is to be routed to another exchange, the order is not handled any differently by the routing broker than if the routing broker did not preference the order.[3] Further, the order is executed at the same exchange and at the same price and in accordance with the same order terms as it would if the routing broker did not preference the order. Therefore, the proposed rule change does not disadvantage customers in any way. The Exchange believes that other exchanges allow this practice and that its routing brokers should be able to do the same.

2. Statutory Basis

The Exchange believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Act and the rules and regulations thereunder applicable to the Exchange and, in particular, the requirements of Section 6(b) of the Act.[4] Specifically, the Exchange believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Section 6(b)(5) [5] requirements that the rules of an exchange be designed to promote just and equitable principles of trade, to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts, to remove impediments to and to perfect the mechanism for a free and open market and a national market system, and, in general, to protect investors and the public interest.

In particular, the proposed rule change helps remove impediments to and perfect the mechanism for a free and open market and a national market system because it still provides customer order protection and facilitates trading at away exchanges so that customer orders trade at the best market prices. Additionally, customer orders still trade in compliance with the Exchange's routing instructions in accordance with the Options Order Protection and Locked/Crossed Market Plan. The proposed rule change also protects investors and the public interest because it clarifies in the rules an existing practice of the Exchange's routing brokers, which the Exchange believes other exchanges allow their routing brokers to do as well. Finally, codifying this practice in the Rules provides additional transparency to Trading Permit Holders regarding routing of their orders to away exchanges.

B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition

C2 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 proposed rule change.

III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action

Because the foregoing proposed rule change does not:

A. significantly affect the protection of investors or the public interest;

B. impose any significant burden on competition; and

C. become operative for 30 days from the date on which it was filed, or such shorter time as the Commission may designate, it has become effective pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A) [6] of the Act and Rule 19b-4(f)(6) [7] thereunder.[8]

At any time within 60 days of the filing of this proposed rule change, the Commission summarily may temporarily suspend such rule change if it appears to the Commission that such action is necessary or appropriate in the public interest, for the protection of investors, or otherwise in furtherance of the purposes of the Act.

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:

Electronic Comments

Paper Comments

  • Send paper comments in triplicate to Elizabeth M. Murphy, Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549-1090.

All submissions should refer to File Number SR-C2-2012-035. This file number should be included on the subject line if email 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 Web site viewing and printing in the Commission's Public Reference Room, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549 on official business days between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Copies of such filing also will be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the Exchange. 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-C2-2012-035 and should be submitted on or before November 6, 2012.

For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, pursuant to delegated authority.[9]

Kevin M. O'Neill,

Deputy Secretary.

Footnotes

3.  The Exchange notes that orders that may be routed to other exchanges under Rule 6.36 are all immediate-or-cancel orders. Therefore, routed orders would not be subject to any automated price improvement mechanisms that may exist under other exchanges' rules.

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8.  In addition, Rule 19b-4(f)(6)(iii) requires a self-regulatory organization to provide the Commission with written notice of its intent to file the proposed rule change, along with a brief description and text of the proposed rule change, at least five business days prior to the date of filing of the proposed rule change, or such shorter time as designated by the Commission. The Exchange has satisfied this requirement.

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[FR Doc. 2012-25332 Filed 10-15-12; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8011-01-P