Upon Written Request Copies Available From: Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of Investor Education and Advocacy, Washington, DC 20549-0213.
Rule 17g-4; SEC File No. 270-566; OMB Control No. 3235-0627.
Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.) (“PRA”), the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) is soliciting comments on the existing collection of information provided for in Rule 17g-4 (17 CFR 240.17g-4) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. 78a et seq.) (“Exchange Act”). The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) for extension and approval.
The Credit Rating Agency Reform Act of 2006 added a new section 15E, “Registration of Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organizations,” 
to the Exchange Act. Pursuant to the authority granted under section 15E of the Exchange Act, the Commission adopted Rule 17g-4, which requires that a nationally recognized statistical rating organization (“NRSRO”) establish, maintain, and enforce written policies and procedures to prevent the misuse of material nonpublic information, including policies and procedures reasonably designed to prevent: (a) The inappropriate dissemination of material nonpublic information obtained in connection with the performance of credit rating services; (b) a person within the NRSRO from trading on material nonpublic information; and (c) the inappropriate dissemination of a pending credit rating action.
There are 10 credit rating agencies registered with the Commission as NRSROs under section 15E of the Exchange Act, which have already established the policies and procedures required by Rule 17g-4. Based on staff experience, an NRSRO is estimated to spend an average of approximately 10 hours per year reviewing its policies and procedures regarding material nonpublic information and updating them (if necessary), resulting in an average industry-wide annual hour burden of approximately 100 hours.
Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Commission's estimates of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information on respondents; 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.
The Commission may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the PRA that does not display a valid OMB control number.
Please direct your written comments to: Thomas Bayer, Director/Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, c/o Remi Pavlik-Simon, 6432 General Green Way, Alexandria, Virginia 22312 or send an email to: PRA_Mailbox@sec.gov.
Dated: December 17, 2012.
Kevin M. O'Neill,
[FR Doc. 2012-30789 Filed 12-20-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8011-01-P