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Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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


Rule 22e-3, SEC File No. 270-603, OMB Control No. 3235-0658

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

Section 22(e) of the Investment Company Act [15 U.S.C. 80a-22(e)] (“Act”) generally prohibits funds, including money market funds, from suspending the right of redemption, and from postponing the payment or satisfaction upon redemption of any redeemable security for more than seven days. The provision was designed to prevent funds and their investment advisers from interfering with the redemption rights of shareholders for improper purposes, such as the preservation of management fees. Although section 22(e) permits funds to postpone the date of payment or satisfaction upon redemption for up to seven days, it does not permit funds to suspend the right of redemption for any amount of time, absent certain specified circumstances or a Commission order.

Rule 22e-3 under the Act [17 CFR 270.22e-3] exempts money market funds from section 22(e) to permit them to suspend redemptions in order to facilitate an orderly liquidation of the fund. Specifically, rule 22e-3 permits a money market fund to suspend redemptions and postpone the payment of proceeds pending board-approved liquidation proceedings if: (i) The fund's board of directors, including a majority of disinterested directors, determines pursuant to § 270.2a-7(c)(8)(ii)(C) that the extent of the deviation between the fund's amortized cost price per share and its current net asset value per share calculated using available market quotations (or an appropriate substitute that reflects current market conditions) may result in material dilution or other unfair results to investors or existing shareholders; (ii) the fund's board of directors, including a majority of disinterested directors, irrevocably approves the liquidation of the fund; and (iii) the fund, prior to suspending redemptions, notifies the Commission of its decision to liquidate and suspend redemptions. Rule 22e-3 also provides an exemption from section 22(e) for registered investment companies that own shares of a money market fund pursuant to section 12(d)(1)(E) of the Act (“conduit funds”), if the underlying money market fund has suspended redemptions pursuant to the rule. A conduit fund that suspends redemptions in reliance on the exemption provided by rule 22e-3 is required to provide prompt notice of the suspension of redemptions to the Commission. Notices required by the rule must be provided by electronic mail, directed to the attention of the Director of the Division of Investment Management or the Director's designee.[1] Compliance with the notification requirement is mandatory for money market funds and conduit funds that rely on rule 22e-3 to suspend redemptions and postpone payment of proceeds pending a liquidation, and are not kept confidential.

Commission staff estimates that, on average, one money market fund would break the buck and liquidate every six years.[2] In addition, Commission staff estimates that there are an average of two conduit funds that may be invested in a money market fund that breaks the buck.[3] Commission staff further estimates that a money market fund or conduit fund would spend approximately one hour of an in-house attorney's time to prepare and submit the notice required by the rule. Given these estimates, the total annual burden of the notification requirement of rule 22e-3 for all money market funds and Start Printed Page 42958conduit funds would be approximately 30 minutes,[4] at a cost of $201.[5]

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 of the costs of Commission rules and forms.

Compliance with the collection of information requirements of the rule is necessary to obtain the benefit of relying on the rule. 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 control number.

Written comments are invited on: (a) Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information has practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Commission's estimate of the burden 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 after this publication.

Please direct your written comments to Pamela Dyson, Director/Chief Information Officer, Securities and Exchange Commission, C/O Candace Kenner, 100 F Street NE, Washington, DC 20549; or send an email to:

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Dated: August 21, 2018.

Eduardo A. Aleman,

Assistant Secretary.

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1.  See rule 22e-3(a)(3).

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2.  This estimate is based upon the Commission's experience with the frequency with which money market funds have historically required sponsor support. Although the vast majority of money market fund sponsors have supported their money market funds in times of market distress, for purposes of this estimate Commission staff conservatively estimates that one or more sponsors may not provide support.

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3.  Based on a review of filings with the Commission, Commission staff estimates that 2.3 conduit funds are invested in each master fund. However, master funds account for only 5.1% of all money market funds. Solely for the purposes of this information collection, and to avoid underestimating possible burdens, the Commission conservatively assumes that any money market that breaks the buck and liquidates would be a master fund.

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4.  This estimate is based on the following calculations: (1 hour ÷ 6 years) = 10 minutes per year for each fund and conduit fund that is required to provide notice under the rule. 10 minutes per year × 3 (combined number of affected funds and conduit funds) = 30 minutes.

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5.  This estimate is based on the following calculation: $401/hour × 30 minutes = $200.50. The estimated hourly wages used in this PRA analysis were derived from reports prepared by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, modified to account for an 1,800-hour work year and multiplied by 5.35 to account for bonuses, firm size, employee benefits and overhead, and adjusted for inflation.

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[FR Doc. 2018-18360 Filed 8-23-18; 8:45 am]