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Notice

Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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U pon Written Request, Copies Available From: Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of FOIA Services, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549-2736

Extension: Rule 15g-9

SEC File No. 270-325, OMB Control No. 3235-0385

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 comment on the collection of information described below. The Commission plans to submit this existing collection of information to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for extension and approval.

Section 15(c)(2) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S. C. 78a et seq.) (the “Exchange Act”) authorizes the Commission to promulgate rules that prescribe means reasonably designed to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, or manipulative practices in connection with over-the-counter (“OTC”) securities transactions. Pursuant to this authority, the Commission in 1989 adopted Rule 15a-6, which was subsequently redesignated as Rule 15g-9, 17 CFR 240.15g-9 (the “Rule”). The Rule requires broker-dealers to produce a written suitability determination for, and to obtain a written customer agreement to, certain recommended transactions in penny stocks that are not registered on a national securities exchange, and whose issuers do not meet certain minimum financial standards. The Rule is intended to prevent the indiscriminate use by broker-dealers of fraudulent, high pressure telephone sales campaigns to sell penny stocks to unsophisticated customers.

The Commission staff estimates that there are approximately 198 broker-dealers subject to the Rule. The burden of the Rule on a respondent varies widely depending on the frequency with which new customers are solicited. On the average for all respondents, the staff has estimated that respondents process three new customers per week, or approximately 156 new customer suitability determinations per year. We also estimate that a broker-dealer would expend approximately one-half hour per new customer in obtaining, reviewing, and processing (including transmitting to the customer) the information required by Rule 15g-9, and each respondent would consequently spend 78 hours annually (156 customers × .5 hours) obtaining the information required in the rule. We determined, based on the estimate of 198 broker-dealer respondents, that the current annual burden of Rule 15g-9 is 15,444 hours (198 respondents × 78 hours).

Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed 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 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 Start Printed Page 32222other forms of information technology. Consideration will be given to comments and suggestions submitted in writing within 60 days of this publication.

An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information under the PRA unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

Please direct your written comments to: Pamela Dyson, Director/Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, c/o Remi Pavlik-Simon, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549; or comments may be sent by email to: PRA_Mailbox@sec.gov.

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Dated: July 6, 2017.

Eduardo A. Aleman,

Assistant Secretary.

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[FR Doc. 2017-14567 Filed 7-11-17; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8011-01-P