Self-Regulatory Organizations; Boston Stock Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Extend Until June 5, 2007, a Pilot Program for Listing Options on Selected Stocks Trading Below $20 at One-Point Intervals, 30973-30975 [E6-8322]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 104 / Wednesday, May 31, 2006 / Notices Chicago Board Options Exchange (‘‘CBOE’’) Rule 6.8A11 and the Philadelphia Stock Exchange (‘‘Phlx’’) Rule 1080(i).12 Both of these rules had prohibited the entry of electronically generated orders. The Commission believes that the proposed rule change, as amended, raises no new regulatory issues and that a full notice and comment period is not necessary. For the reasons set forth above, the Commission finds good cause to accelerate approval of the proposed rule change, as amended, pursuant to section 19(b)(2) of the Act. V. Conclusion It is therefore ordered, pursuant to section 19(b)(2) of the Act, that the proposed rule change (SR–Amex–2006– 46), as amended, is hereby approved on an accelerated basis. For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, pursuant to delegated authority.13 Nancy M. Morris, Secretary. [FR Doc. E6–8321 Filed 5–30–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8010–01–P SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34–53855; File No. SR–BSE– 2006–19] Self-Regulatory Organizations; Boston Stock Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Extend Until June 5, 2007, a Pilot Program for Listing Options on Selected Stocks Trading Below $20 at One-Point Intervals May 24, 2006. jlentini on PROD1PC65 with NOTICES Pursuant to section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (‘‘Act’’) 1 and Rule 19b–4 thereunder,2 notice is hereby given that on May 22, 2006, the Boston Stock Exchange, Inc. (‘‘BSE’’ or ‘‘Exchange’’) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘‘Commission’’) the proposed rule change as described in Items I and II below, which Items have been prepared by the BSE. The BSE filed the proposal pursuant to section 19(b)(3)(A) of the 11 See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 51030 (January 12, 2005), 70 FR 3404 (January 24, 2005) (SR–CBOE–2004–91). 12 See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 48648 (October 16, 2003), 68 FR 60762 (October 23, 2003) (SR–Phlx–2003–37). 13 17 CFR 200.30–3(a)(12). 1 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1). 2 17 CFR 240.19b–4. VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:52 May 30, 2006 Jkt 208001 Act,3 and Rule 19b–4(f)(6) thereunder,4 which renders the proposal effective upon filing with the Commission. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons. I. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change The BSE proposes to amend Supplementary Material .02 to Chapter IV, Section 6, ‘‘Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading,’’ of the rules of the Boston Options Exchange (‘‘BOX’’) to extend until June 5, 2007, the pilot program for listing options series on selected stocks trading below $20 at one-point intervals (‘‘Pilot Program’’). The text of the proposed rule change is available on the BSE’s Web site (http://www.bostonstock.com), at the BSE’s principal office, and at the Commission’s Public Reference Room. II. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change In its filing with the Commission, the BSE included statements concerning the purpose of and basis for the proposed rule change and discussed any comments it received on the proposed rule change. The text of these statements may be examined at the places specified in Item IV below. The BSE has prepared summaries, set forth in Sections A, B, and C below, of the most significant aspects of such statements. A. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change 1. Purpose The purpose of the proposed rule change is to extend the Pilot Program 5 under the BOX Rules for an additional year, until June 5, 2007. The Pilot Program allows the Boston Options Exchange Regulation, LLC (‘‘BOXR’’), the wholly owned subsidiary of the BSE with the delegated regulatory authority 3 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A). CFR 240.19b–4(f)(6). 5 The BSE implemented the Pilot Program in February 2004 and extended it twice through June 5, 2006. See Securities Exchange Act Release Nos. 49292 (February 20, 2004), 69 FR 8993 (February 26, 2004) (notice of filing and immediate effectiveness of File No. SR–BSE–2004–01) (establishing the Pilot Program); 49806 (June 4, 2004), 69 FR 32640 (June 10, 2004) (notice of filing and immediate effectiveness of File No. SR–BSE– 2004–22) (extending the Pilot Program through June 5, 2005); and 51778 (June 2, 2005), 70 FR 33562 (June 8, 2005) (notice of filing and immediate effectiveness of File No. SR–BSE–2005–18) (extending the Pilot Program through June 5, 2006). 4 17 PO 00000 Frm 00117 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 30973 over BOX, to list options on a pilot basis on up to five selected underlying equities trading below $20 at $1 strike price intervals, as provided under the terms of the Pilot Program. The Pilot Program also allows BOX to list $1 strike prices on any equity option included in the $1 strike price pilot program of any other options exchange until June 5, 2006. The proposed rule change retains the text of Supplementary Material .02 to Section 6 of Chapter IV of the BOX Rules, as currently established on a pilot basis, and seeks to extend the operation of the Pilot Program for another year. Chapter IV, Section 6 of the Box Rules establishes guidelines regarding the addition of options series for trading on BOX. Under the Pilot Program, to be eligible for selection into the Pilot Program, the underlying stock must close below $20 on its primary market on the previous trading day. If selected for the Pilot Program, BOX may list strike prices at $1 intervals from $3 to $20, but no $1 strike price may be listed that is greater than $5 from the underlying stock’s closing price on its primary market on the previous day. BOX also may list $1 strikes on any other options class designated by another options exchange that employs a similar pilot program under its rules. BOX may not list long-term option series (‘‘LEAPS’’) at $1 strike price intervals for any class selected for the Pilot Program. BOX also is restricted from listing any series that would result in strike prices being $0.50 apart. The Pilot Program initially was proposed in reaction to the general decrease in stock prices and the proliferation of stocks trading below $20, including some of the most widely held and actively traded equity securities listed on the New York Stock Exchange, the American Stock Exchange, and Nasdaq. The BSE notes that many of these stocks are still trading below $20, including, for example, Oracle, Micron Technology, EMC Corp, and Motorola. When a stock underlying an option trades at a lower price, it requires a larger percentage gain in the price of the stock for an option to become in-themoney. For example, if a stock trades at $10, an investor that wants to purchase a slightly out-of-the-money call option would have to buy the $12.50 call. At these levels, the stock price would need to increase by 25% to reach in-themoney status. The BSE notes that a 25% or higher gain in the price of the underlying stock is especially large given the lessened degree of volatility that recently has accompanied many stocks and options. According to the E:\FR\FM\31MYN1.SGM 31MYN1 30974 Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 104 / Wednesday, May 31, 2006 / Notices BSE, listing additional strike prices on these classes has allowed BOX Participants to provide their customers with greater trading flexibility in achieving their investment strategies. In further support of this proposed rule change, the Exchange submitted to the Commission a Pilot Program Report, attached as Exhibit 3, offering detailed data from and analysis of the Pilot Program. 2. Statutory Basis The Exchange believes that the data demonstrates that there is sufficient investor interest and demand to extend the Pilot Program for another year, without adversely effecting systems capacity. The proposed rule change is designed to provide investors with greater trading opportunities, and the flexibility and ability to more closely tailor their investment strategies and decisions to the movement of the underlying security. Accordingly, the Exchange believes that the proposal is consistent with the requirements of section 6(b) of the Act,6 in general, and of section 6(b)(5) of the Act,7 in particular, in that it is designed to foster cooperation and coordination with persons engaged in regulating, clearing, settling, processing information with respect to, and facilitating transactions in securities, to remove impediments to and perfect the mechanism of a free and open market and a national market system, and, in general, to protect investors and the public interest. B. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement on Burden on Competition The BSE does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose any burden on competition that is not necessary or appropriate in the furtherance of the purposes of the Act. C. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change Received From Members, Participants, or Others The BSE has neither solicited nor received comments on the proposed rule change. jlentini on PROD1PC65 with NOTICES III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action The BSE has filed the proposed rule change pursuant to section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act 8 and subparagraph (f)(6) of Rule 19b–4 thereunder.9 Because the foregoing proposed rule change: (1) 6 15 U.S.C. 78f(b). U.S.C. 78f(b)(5). 8 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A). 9 17 CFR 240.19b–4(f)(6). 7 15 VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:52 May 30, 2006 Jkt 208001 Does not significantly affect the protection of investors or the public interest; (2) does not impose any significant burden on competition; and (3) by its terms does not become operative for 30 days after the date of this filing, or such shorter time as the Commission may designate if consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest, the proposed rule change has become effective pursuant to section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act and Rule 19b–4(f)(6) thereunder. As required under Rule 19b–4(f)(6)(iii), the BSE provided the Commission with written notice of its intention to file the proposed rule change at least five business days prior to filing the proposal with the Commission or such shorter period as designated by the Commission. A proposed rule change filed under Rule 19b–4(f)(6) normally does not become operative for 30 days after the date of filing. However, Rule 19b– 4(f)(6)(iii) permits the Commission to designate a shorter time if such action is consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest. The BSE has asked the Commission to waive the 30-day operative delay to allow the Pilot Program to continue to operate without interruption. The Commission believes that waiving the 30-day operative delay is consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest because it will allow the Pilot Program to continue without interruption through June 5, 2007.10 For this reason, the Commission designates that the proposal become operative on June 5, 2006.11 10 For purposes only of waiving the 30-day operative delay, the Commission has considered the proposed rule’s impact on efficiency, competition, and capital formation. 15 U.S.C. 78c(f). 11 In the event that the BSE proposes to: (1) Extend the Pilot Program beyond June 5, 2007; (2) expand the number of options eligible for inclusion in the Pilot Program; or (3) seek permanent approval of the Pilot Program, the BSE will submit a Pilot Program report to the Commission along with the filing of its proposal to extend, expand, or seek permanent approval of the Pilot Program. The BSE will file any such proposal and the Pilot Program report with the Commission at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the Pilot Program. The Pilot Program report will cover the entire time the Pilot Program was in effect and will include: (1) Data and written analysis on the open interest and trading volume for options (at all strike price intervals) selected for the Pilot Program; (2) delisted options series (for all strike price intervals) for all options selected for the Pilot Program; (3) an assessment of the appropriateness of $1 strike price intervals for the options the BSE selected for the Pilot Program; (4) an assessment of the impact of the Pilot Program on the capacity of the BSE’s, the Options Price Reporting Authority’s, and vendors’ automated systems; (5) any capacity problems or other problems that arose during the operation of the Pilot Program and how the BSE addressed them; PO 00000 Frm 00118 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 At any time within 60 days of the filing of the proposed rule change, the Commission may summarily abrogate such rule change if it appears to the Commission that such action is necessary or appropriate in the public interest, for the protection of investors, or otherwise in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. IV. Solicitation of Comments Interested persons are invited to submit written data, views, and arguments concerning the foregoing, including whether the proposed rule change is consistent with the Act. Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods: Electronic Comments: • Use the Commission’s Internet comment form (http://www.sec.gov/ rules/sro.shtml); or • Send an e-mail to rulecomments@sec.gov. Please include File No. SR–BSE–2006–19 on the subject line. Paper Comments • Send paper comments in triplicate to Nancy M. Morris, Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, Station Place, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549–1090. All submissions should refer to File No. SR–BSE–2006–19. This file number should be included on the subject line if e-mail is used. To help the Commission process and review your comments more efficiently, please use only one method. The Commission will post all comments on the Commission’s Internet Web site (http://www.sec.gov/ rules/sro.shtml). Copies of the submission, all subsequent amendments, all written statements with respect to the proposed rule change that are filed with the Commission, and all written communications relating to the proposed rule change between the Commission and any person, other than those that may be withheld from the public in accordance with the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 552, will be available for inspection and copying in the Commission’s Public Reference Room. Copies of such filing will also be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the BSE. All comments received will be posted without change; the Commission does not edit personal identifying information from submissions. You (6) any complaints that the BSE received during the operation of the Pilot Program and how the BSE addressed them; and (7) any additional information that would help to assess the operation of the Pilot Program. E:\FR\FM\31MYN1.SGM 31MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 104 / Wednesday, May 31, 2006 / Notices should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly. All submissions should refer to File No. SR–BSE–2006–19 and should be submitted on or before June 21, 2006. Rules of the Boston Options Exchange Facility For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, pursuant to delegated authority.12 Nancy M. Morris, Secretary. [FR Doc. E6–8322 Filed 5–30–06; 8:45 am] Sec. 17 Customer Orders and Order Flow Providers (a) through (c) No Change. Supplementary Material to Section 17 BILLING CODE 8010–01–P SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34–53854; File No. SR–BSE– 2006–23] Self-Regulatory Organizations; Boston Stock Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Relating To Decreasing the Exposure Period for Crossing Orders Under Chapter V, Section 17, Supplementary Material .02 and .03 May 24, 2006. Pursuant to section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (‘‘Act’’),1 and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,2 notice is hereby given that on May 11, 2006, the Boston Stock Exchange, Inc. (‘‘BSE’’) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘‘Commission’’) the proposed rule change as described in Items I and II below, which Items have been prepared by the BSE. The BSE filed the proposed rule change as a ‘‘non-controversial’’ rule change pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act 3 and Rule 19b-4(f)(6) thereunder,4 which renders the proposal effective upon filing with the Commission. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons. jlentini on PROD1PC65 with NOTICES I. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change The BSE proposes to decrease the exposure period for crossing orders under Chapter V, Section 17, Supplementary Material .02 and .03 of the Boston Options Exchange (‘‘BOX’’) rules from 30 seconds to 3 seconds. The text of the proposed rule amendment is provided below. * * * * * (Additions are italicized; deletions are [bracketed], unless otherwise indicated) CFR 200.30–3(a)(12). U.S.C. 78s(b)(1). 2 17 CFR 240.19b–4. 3 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A). 4 17 CFR 240.19b–4(f)(6). CHAPTER V. DOING BUSINESS ON BOX .01 No Change. .02 If an Options Participant fails to expose its Customer Order[s] 5 on BOX, it will be a violation of this Section 17 for an Options Participant to cause the execution of an order it represents as agent on BOX through the use of orders it solicited from Options Participants and/or non-Participant broker-dealers to transact with such orders, whether such solicited orders are entered into the BOX market directly by the Options Participant or by the solicited party (either directly or through another Participant), unless the agency order is first exposed to the BOX Book for at least [thirty (30)]three (3) seconds. .03 An OFP may not execute as principal an order it represents as agent unless, (i) the agency order is first exposed to the BOX Book for at least [thirty (30)]three (3) seconds, or (ii) the OFP has been bidding or offering on BOX for a least [thirty (30)]three (3) seconds prior to receiving an agency order that is executable against such bid or offer; or (iii) the OFP sends the agency order to the Price Improvement Period process pursuant to Section 18 of this Chapter V. .04 No Change. * * * * * II. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change In its filing with the Commission, the BSE included statements concerning the purpose of and basis for the proposed rule change and discussed any comments it received on the proposed rule change. The text of these statements may be examined at the places specified in Item IV below. The BSE has prepared summaries, set forth in Sections A, B, and C below, of the most significant aspects of such statements. 12 17 1 15 VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:52 May 30, 2006 5 The ‘‘s’’ and surrounding brackets appear in the current rule text, and are not intended to be deletions under the proposed rule change. Jkt 208001 PO 00000 Frm 00119 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 30975 A. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change 1. Purpose An Options Participant (‘‘Participant’’) may not execute an order it represents as agent with a facilitation or a solicited order (referred to herein as ‘‘crossing orders’’) unless it complies with the order exposure requirements contained in Chapter V, Section 17, Supplementary Material .03 and .02 respectively. Specifically, when a Participant is not submitting an order to the Price Improvement Period process, it may not execute a facilitation cross unless (i) the agency order is first exposed to the BOX Book for at least 30 seconds; or (ii) the Participant has been bidding or offering on BOX for at least 30 seconds prior to receiving the agency order that is executable against such bid or offer. Similarly, a Participant may not execute a solicitation cross unless the agency order is first exposed to the BOX Book for 30 seconds. The BSE proposes to shorten the duration of the exposure period contained in the rules governing such transactions from 30 seconds to 3 seconds. This shortened exposure period is fully consistent with the electronic nature of the BOX’s market. Market participants on the BOX market have implemented systems that monitor any updates to the BOX market, including any changes resulting from orders being entered into the market, and can automatically respond based on pre-set parameters. Thus, an exposure period of 3 seconds will permit exposure of orders on BOX in a manner consistent with its electronic market. By reducing the exposure time to 3 seconds, the BSE believes that Participants will be able to provide liquidity to their customers’ orders on a timelier basis, thus providing investors with more speedy executions. Timely and accurate executions are consistent with the principles under which the BOX’s electronic market was developed. 2. Statutory Basis The BSE believes that the proposal is consistent with the requirements of section 6(b) of the Act,6 in general, and Section 6(b)(5) of the Act,7 in particular, in that it is designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices, to promote just and equitable principles of trade, to foster cooperation and coordination with persons engaged in regulating, clearing, settling, 6 15 7 15 U.S.C. 78f(b). U.S.C. 78f(b)(5). E:\FR\FM\31MYN1.SGM 31MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 104 (Wednesday, May 31, 2006)]
[Notices]
[Pages 30973-30975]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-8322]


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SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

[Release No. 34-53855; File No. SR-BSE-2006-19]


Self-Regulatory Organizations; Boston Stock Exchange, Inc.; 
Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change 
To Extend Until June 5, 2007, a Pilot Program for Listing Options on 
Selected Stocks Trading Below $20 at One-Point Intervals

May 24, 2006.
    Pursuant to section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 
(``Act'') \1\ and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,\2\ notice is hereby given that 
on May 22, 2006, the Boston Stock Exchange, Inc. (``BSE'' or 
``Exchange'') filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission 
(``Commission'') the proposed rule change as described in Items I and 
II below, which Items have been prepared by the BSE. The BSE filed the 
proposal pursuant to section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act,\3\ and Rule 19b-
4(f)(6) thereunder,\4\ which renders the proposal effective upon filing 
with the Commission. The Commission is publishing this notice to 
solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1).
    \2\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4..
    \3\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A).
    \4\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6).
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I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of Substance 
of the Proposed Rule Change

    The BSE proposes to amend Supplementary Material .02 to Chapter IV, 
Section 6, ``Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading,'' of the 
rules of the Boston Options Exchange (``BOX'') to extend until June 5, 
2007, the pilot program for listing options series on selected stocks 
trading below $20 at one-point intervals (``Pilot Program''). The text 
of the proposed rule change is available on the BSE's Web site (http://
www.bostonstock.com), at the BSE's principal office, and at the 
Commission's Public Reference Room.

II. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and 
Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change

    In its filing with the Commission, the BSE included statements 
concerning the purpose of and basis for the proposed rule change and 
discussed any comments it received on the proposed rule change. The 
text of these statements may be examined at the places specified in 
Item IV below. The BSE has prepared summaries, set forth in Sections A, 
B, and C below, of the most significant aspects of such statements.

A. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and 
Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change

1. Purpose
    The purpose of the proposed rule change is to extend the Pilot 
Program \5\ under the BOX Rules for an additional year, until June 5, 
2007. The Pilot Program allows the Boston Options Exchange Regulation, 
LLC (``BOXR''), the wholly owned subsidiary of the BSE with the 
delegated regulatory authority over BOX, to list options on a pilot 
basis on up to five selected underlying equities trading below $20 at 
$1 strike price intervals, as provided under the terms of the Pilot 
Program. The Pilot Program also allows BOX to list $1 strike prices on 
any equity option included in the $1 strike price pilot program of any 
other options exchange until June 5, 2006. The proposed rule change 
retains the text of Supplementary Material .02 to Section 6 of Chapter 
IV of the BOX Rules, as currently established on a pilot basis, and 
seeks to extend the operation of the Pilot Program for another year.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ The BSE implemented the Pilot Program in February 2004 and 
extended it twice through June 5, 2006. See Securities Exchange Act 
Release Nos. 49292 (February 20, 2004), 69 FR 8993 (February 26, 
2004) (notice of filing and immediate effectiveness of File No. SR-
BSE-2004-01) (establishing the Pilot Program); 49806 (June 4, 2004), 
69 FR 32640 (June 10, 2004) (notice of filing and immediate 
effectiveness of File No. SR-BSE-2004-22) (extending the Pilot 
Program through June 5, 2005); and 51778 (June 2, 2005), 70 FR 33562 
(June 8, 2005) (notice of filing and immediate effectiveness of File 
No. SR-BSE-2005-18) (extending the Pilot Program through June 5, 
2006).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Chapter IV, Section 6 of the Box Rules establishes guidelines 
regarding the addition of options series for trading on BOX. Under the 
Pilot Program, to be eligible for selection into the Pilot Program, the 
underlying stock must close below $20 on its primary market on the 
previous trading day. If selected for the Pilot Program, BOX may list 
strike prices at $1 intervals from $3 to $20, but no $1 strike price 
may be listed that is greater than $5 from the underlying stock's 
closing price on its primary market on the previous day. BOX also may 
list $1 strikes on any other options class designated by another 
options exchange that employs a similar pilot program under its rules. 
BOX may not list long-term option series (``LEAPS''[supreg]) at $1 
strike price intervals for any class selected for the Pilot Program. 
BOX also is restricted from listing any series that would result in 
strike prices being $0.50 apart.
    The Pilot Program initially was proposed in reaction to the general 
decrease in stock prices and the proliferation of stocks trading below 
$20, including some of the most widely held and actively traded equity 
securities listed on the New York Stock Exchange, the American Stock 
Exchange, and Nasdaq. The BSE notes that many of these stocks are still 
trading below $20, including, for example, Oracle, Micron Technology, 
EMC Corp, and Motorola.
    When a stock underlying an option trades at a lower price, it 
requires a larger percentage gain in the price of the stock for an 
option to become in-the-money. For example, if a stock trades at $10, 
an investor that wants to purchase a slightly out-of-the-money call 
option would have to buy the $12.50 call. At these levels, the stock 
price would need to increase by 25% to reach in-the-money status. The 
BSE notes that a 25% or higher gain in the price of the underlying 
stock is especially large given the lessened degree of volatility that 
recently has accompanied many stocks and options. According to the

[[Page 30974]]

BSE, listing additional strike prices on these classes has allowed BOX 
Participants to provide their customers with greater trading 
flexibility in achieving their investment strategies. In further 
support of this proposed rule change, the Exchange submitted to the 
Commission a Pilot Program Report, attached as Exhibit 3, offering 
detailed data from and analysis of the Pilot Program.
2. Statutory Basis
    The Exchange believes that the data demonstrates that there is 
sufficient investor interest and demand to extend the Pilot Program for 
another year, without adversely effecting systems capacity. The 
proposed rule change is designed to provide investors with greater 
trading opportunities, and the flexibility and ability to more closely 
tailor their investment strategies and decisions to the movement of the 
underlying security. Accordingly, the Exchange believes that the 
proposal is consistent with the requirements of section 6(b) of the 
Act,\6\ in general, and of section 6(b)(5) of the Act,\7\ in 
particular, in that it is designed to foster cooperation and 
coordination with persons engaged in regulating, clearing, settling, 
processing information with respect to, and facilitating transactions 
in securities, to remove impediments to and perfect the mechanism of a 
free and open market and a national market system, and, in general, to 
protect investors and the public interest.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ 15 U.S.C. 78f(b).
    \7\ 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(5).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition

    The BSE does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose 
any burden on competition that is not necessary or appropriate in the 
furtherance of the purposes of the Act.

C. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Comments on the Proposed 
Rule Change Received From Members, Participants, or Others

    The BSE has neither solicited nor received comments on the proposed 
rule change.

III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for 
Commission Action

    The BSE has filed the proposed rule change pursuant to section 
19(b)(3)(A) of the Act \8\ and subparagraph (f)(6) of Rule 19b-4 
thereunder.\9\ Because the foregoing proposed rule change: (1) Does not 
significantly affect the protection of investors or the public 
interest; (2) does not impose any significant burden on competition; 
and (3) by its terms does not become operative for 30 days after the 
date of this filing, or such shorter time as the Commission may 
designate if consistent with the protection of investors and the public 
interest, the proposed rule change has become effective pursuant to 
section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act and Rule 19b-4(f)(6) thereunder. As 
required under Rule 19b-4(f)(6)(iii), the BSE provided the Commission 
with written notice of its intention to file the proposed rule change 
at least five business days prior to filing the proposal with the 
Commission or such shorter period as designated by the Commission.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \8\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A).
    \9\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A proposed rule change filed under Rule 19b-4(f)(6) normally does 
not become operative for 30 days after the date of filing. However, 
Rule 19b-4(f)(6)(iii) permits the Commission to designate a shorter 
time if such action is consistent with the protection of investors and 
the public interest. The BSE has asked the Commission to waive the 30-
day operative delay to allow the Pilot Program to continue to operate 
without interruption.
    The Commission believes that waiving the 30-day operative delay is 
consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest 
because it will allow the Pilot Program to continue without 
interruption through June 5, 2007.\10\ For this reason, the Commission 
designates that the proposal become operative on June 5, 2006.\11\
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    \10\ For purposes only of waiving the 30-day operative delay, 
the Commission has considered the proposed rule's impact on 
efficiency, competition, and capital formation. 15 U.S.C. 78c(f).
    \11\ In the event that the BSE proposes to: (1) Extend the Pilot 
Program beyond June 5, 2007; (2) expand the number of options 
eligible for inclusion in the Pilot Program; or (3) seek permanent 
approval of the Pilot Program, the BSE will submit a Pilot Program 
report to the Commission along with the filing of its proposal to 
extend, expand, or seek permanent approval of the Pilot Program. The 
BSE will file any such proposal and the Pilot Program report with 
the Commission at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the Pilot 
Program. The Pilot Program report will cover the entire time the 
Pilot Program was in effect and will include: (1) Data and written 
analysis on the open interest and trading volume for options (at all 
strike price intervals) selected for the Pilot Program; (2) delisted 
options series (for all strike price intervals) for all options 
selected for the Pilot Program; (3) an assessment of the 
appropriateness of $1 strike price intervals for the options the BSE 
selected for the Pilot Program; (4) an assessment of the impact of 
the Pilot Program on the capacity of the BSE's, the Options Price 
Reporting Authority's, and vendors' automated systems; (5) any 
capacity problems or other problems that arose during the operation 
of the Pilot Program and how the BSE addressed them; (6) any 
complaints that the BSE received during the operation of the Pilot 
Program and how the BSE addressed them; and (7) any additional 
information that would help to assess the operation of the Pilot 
Program.
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    At any time within 60 days of the filing of the proposed rule 
change, the Commission may summarily abrogate such rule change if it 
appears to the Commission that such action is necessary or appropriate 
in the public interest, for the protection of investors, or otherwise 
in furtherance of the purposes of the Act.

IV. Solicitation of Comments

    Interested persons are invited to submit written data, views, and 
arguments concerning the foregoing, including whether the proposed rule 
change is consistent with the Act. Comments may be submitted by any of 
the following methods:

Electronic Comments:

     Use the Commission's Internet comment form (http://
www.sec.gov/rules/sro.shtml); or
     Send an e-mail to rule-comments@sec.gov. Please include 
File No. SR-BSE-2006-19 on the subject line.

Paper Comments

     Send paper comments in triplicate to Nancy M. Morris, 
Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, Station Place, 100 F 
Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549-1090.

All submissions should refer to File No. SR-BSE-2006-19. This file 
number should be included on the subject line if e-mail is used. To 
help the Commission process and review your comments more efficiently, 
please use only one method. The Commission will post all comments on 
the Commission's Internet Web site (http://www.sec.gov/rules/
sro.shtml). Copies of the submission, all subsequent amendments, all 
written statements with respect to the proposed rule change that are 
filed with the Commission, and all written communications relating to 
the proposed rule change between the Commission and any person, other 
than those that may be withheld from the public in accordance with the 
provisions of 5 U.S.C. 552, will be available for inspection and 
copying in the Commission's Public Reference Room. Copies of such 
filing will also be available for inspection and copying at the 
principal office of the BSE. All comments received will be posted 
without change; the Commission does not edit personal identifying 
information from submissions. You

[[Page 30975]]

should submit only information that you wish to make available 
publicly. All submissions should refer to File No. SR-BSE-2006-19 and 
should be submitted on or before June 21, 2006.

    For the Commission, by the Division of Market Regulation, 
pursuant to delegated authority.\12\
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    \12\ 17 CFR 200.30-3(a)(12).
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Nancy M. Morris,
Secretary.
[FR Doc. E6-8322 Filed 5-30-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8010-01-P