Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

Longer Period Designated for Consideration of Unlisted Securities Proposal

On January 9th, the SEC designated March 12, 2015 as the date by which it will approve or disapprove the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s proposal to adopt rules relating to quotation requirements for over-the- counter equity securities and to delete the rules relating to the OTC Bulletin Board Service and thus cease its operation. SEC Release No. 34-74021.

Fixed Income Clearing Corporation

SEC Approves Amendments Regarding Insolvencies

On January 13th, the SEC approved the Fixed Income Clearing Corporation’s proposed amendments to the rulebooks of FICC’s Government Securities Division and FICC’s Mortgage-Backed Securities Division to simplify those rules relating to the insolvency of a member and ceasing to act, in order to simplify certain aspects of FICC’s process in a cease to act situation, and to provide greater legal certainty for FICC and its members, particularly in an intra-day cease to act situation. SEC Release No. 34-74046.


IPO Indicator Service Approved

On January 13th, the SEC approved The NASDAQ Stock Market’s proposal to offer stand-alone access to the Exchange’s IPO Indicator service. SEC Release No. 34-74041.

National Futures Association

Member Obligations Regarding Exempt CPOs and CTAs

On January 15th, the National Futures Association provided guidance on persons who may claim an exemption from CPO or CTA registration by the March 2, 2015 deadline. Because it may be difficult for members to determine if a previously exempt CPO/CTA continues to be eligible for a current exemption, members who take reasonable steps to determine the registration and membership status of previously exempt persons will not be in violation of NFA Bylaw 1101 or Compliance Rule 2-36(d) if, between January 1 and March 31, 2015, they transact customer business with a previously exempt person that fails to either become registered and a member of NFA, file a notice affirming its exemption from CPO registration, or provide a written representation as to why the person is not required to register or file the notice affirming the exemption. NFA Nitce-I-15-02.


NYSE Prohibition on Use of Wireless Handheld Devices

On January 16th, NYSE Regulation reminded members and employees of member organizations that they are prohibited from using or possessing any wireless handheld trading device that may be used to view or enter orders directly into the Equities automated trading systems while on the Options Trading Floor. Members and employees of member organizations are also prohibited from using or possessing any wireless trading device that may be used to view or enter orders directly into the Options automated trading systems while on the Equities Trading Floor. NYSE Regulation Information Memo 15-2.

Longer Period Designated for Consideration of Order Type Proposal

On January 14th, the SEC designated March 4, 2015 as the date by which it will approve, disapprove, or institute disapproval proceedings regarding NYSE’s proposed amendment of Exchange rules governing order types and order modifiers. SEC Release No. 34-74051.

NYSE Conduct Policies

On January 14th, NYSE Regulation reminded members of the policies governing conduct on New York Stock Exchange premises, including the NYSE and NYSE MKT Equities trading floors. These policies include: floor conduct and safety guidelines; gambling policy; prohibition against firearms and weapons; and non  harassment policy. NYSE Regulation Information Memo 15-1.

LLCs May Become Member Firms

On January 12th, the SEC approved NYSE’s and NYSE MKT’s individually submitted proposals to amend their respective rules to add limited liability companies (“LLCs”) to the types of eligible member organizations and delineate the information LLCs must submit to the Exchanges as part of the membership process; eliminate the requirement that a member corporation be created or organized, and maintain its principal place of business, in the United States; and make additional related amendments to update each of their membership rules.