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Notice

Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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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 0-2; OMB Control No. 3235-0636, SEC File No. 270-572.

Notice is hereby given that, pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) is soliciting comments on the collections of information summarized below. The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget for extension and approval.

Several sections of the Investment Company Act of 1940 (“Act” or “Investment Company Act”) [1] give the Commission the authority to issue orders granting exemptions from the Act's provisions. The section that grants broadest authority is section 6(c), which provides the Commission with authority to conditionally or unconditionally exempt persons, securities or transactions from any provision of the Investment Company Act, or the rules or regulations thereunder, 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.[2]

Rule 0-2 under the Investment Company Act,[3] entitled “General Requirements of Papers and Applications,” prescribes general instructions for filing an application seeking exemptive relief with the Commission for which a form is not specifically prescribed. Rule 0-2 requires that each application filed with the commission have (a) a statement of authorization to file and sign the application on behalf of the applicant, (b) a verification of application and statements of fact, (c) a brief statement of the grounds for application, and (d) the name and address of each applicant and of any person to whom questions should be directed. The Commission uses the information required by rule 0-2 to decide whether the applicant should be deemed to be entitled to the action requested by the application.

Applicants for orders can include registered investment companies, affiliated persons of registered investment companies, and issuers seeking to avoid investment company status, among other entities. Commission staff estimates that it receives approximately 110 applications per year under the Act. Although each application typically is submitted on behalf of multiple entities, the entities in the vast majority of cases are related companies and are treated as a single respondent for purposes of this analysis.

The time to prepare an application depends on the complexity and/or novelty of the issues covered by the application. We estimate that the Commission receives 15 of the most time-consuming applications annually, 75 applications of medium difficulty, and 20 of the least difficult applications. Based on conversations with applicants, we estimate that in-house counsel would spend from ten to fifty hours helping to draft and review an application. We estimate a total annual hour burden to all respondents of 3,200 hours [(50 hours × 15 applications) + (30 hours × 75 applications) + (10 hours × 20 applications)].

Much of the work of preparing an application is performed by outside counsel. The cost outside counsel charges applicants depends on the complexity of the issues covered by the application and the time required for preparation. Based on conversations with attorneys who serve as outside counsel, the cost ranges from approximately $10,000 for preparing a well-precedented, routine application to approximately $150,000 to prepare a complex and/or novel application. This distribution gives a total estimated annual cost burden to applicants of filing all applications of $8,450,000 [(15 × $150,000) + (75 × $80,000) + (20 × $10,000)].

We request written comment on: (a) Whether the collections of information are necessary for the proper Start Printed Page 25325performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information has practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Commission's estimate of the burdens of the collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information 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 Thomas Bayer, Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, C/O Remi Pavlik-Simon, 6432 General Green Way, Alexandria, VA 22312; or send an email to: PRA_Mailbox@sec.gov.

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Dated: April 24, 2013.

Kevin M. O'Neill,

Deputy Secretary.

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Footnotes

[FR Doc. 2013-10147 Filed 4-29-13; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8011-01-P