Self-Regulatory Organizations; The Options Clearing Corporation; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Related to the Voluntary Termination by Offset and Re-Matching of Matched-Book Positions in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program, 17231-17234 [2016-06862]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 59 / Monday, March 28, 2016 / Notices 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 Web site viewing and printing in the Commission’s Public Reference Room, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549, on official business days between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Copies of the filing also will be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the Exchange. All comments received will be posted without change; the Commission does not edit personal identifying information from submissions. You should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly. All submissions should refer to File Number SR– BatsEDGX–2016–01, and should be submitted on or before April 18,2016. For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, pursuant to delegated authority.46 Brent J. Fields, Secretary. [FR Doc. 2016–06863 Filed 3–25–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8011–01–P SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34–77415; File No. SR–OCC– 2016–006] Self-Regulatory Organizations; The Options Clearing Corporation; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Related to the Voluntary Termination by Offset and Re-Matching of Matched-Book Positions in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program Lhorne on DSK5TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES March 22, 2016. 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 March 15, 2016, The Options Clearing Corporation (‘‘OCC’’) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘‘Commission’’) the proposed rule change as described 46 17 CFR 200.30–3(a)(12). U.S.C. 78s(b)(1). 2 17 CFR 240.19b–4. 1 15 VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:52 Mar 25, 2016 Jkt 238001 17231 in Items I, II, and III below, which Items have been prepared primarily by OCC. OCC filed the proposed rule change pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A)(iii) 3 of the Act and Rule 19b–4(f)(4)(i) 4 thereunder so that the proposal was effective upon filing with the Commission. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the rule change from interested persons. offset and re-matching of such positions without requiring the transfer of securities against the payment of settlement prices as currently required under OCC’s rules. The proposed termination by offset and re-matching of stock loan and borrow positions is designed to leave the affected Clearing Members with the same net position in such stock loan and borrow positions as prior to the adjustment. I. Clearing Agency’s Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change The purpose of this proposed rule change is to enhance the overall resilience of OCC’s Stock Loan/Hedge Program 5 by allowing OCC to close out the Matched-Book Positions (as defined herein) of Hedge Clearing Members requesting an orderly wind down of Matched-Book Positions through the termination by offset and ‘‘re-matching’’ of such positions without requiring the transfer of securities against the payment of settlement prices as currently required under OCC’s rules. All capitalized terms not defined herein have the same meaning as in OCC’s ByLaws and Rules.6 Background In the Stock Loan/Hedge Program, OCC acts as a central counterparty (‘‘CCP’’) for Hedge Loans that are directly negotiated by Hedge Clearing Members and sent to OCC for clearance and settlement. A prospective Lending Clearing Member and a prospective Borrowing Clearing Member identify each other (independent of OCC) and agree on the terms of the stock loan. The Hedge Clearing Members then send the details of the stock loan to The Depository Trust Company (‘‘Depository’’) with a certain ‘‘reason code,’’ 7 which designates the stock loan as a Hedge Loan for guaranty and clearance at OCC. The Lending Clearing Member instructs the Depository to transfer a specified number of shares of Eligible Stock to the account of the Borrowing Clearing Member, and the Borrowing Clearing Member instructs the Depository to transfer the appropriate amount of cash collateral to the account of the Lending Clearing Member.8 The Depository then sends the Hedge Loan information to OCC via an end-of-day report.9 After OCC receives the report from the Depository, OCC validates and novates the stock loan transaction and becomes the lender to the Borrowing Clearing Member and the borrower to the Lending Clearing Member.10 After novation, as part of the guaranty, OCC makes Mark-to-Market Payments for all Hedge Loans on a daily basis to collateralize all loans to the negotiated levels.11 As the CCP, OCC guarantees the return of the full value of cash collateral to a Borrowing Clearing Member and the Loaned Stock, or value of that Loaned Stock, to the Lending II. Clearing Agency’s Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change In its filing with the Commission, OCC 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. OCC has prepared summaries, set forth in sections (A), (B), and (C) below, of the most significant aspects of these statements. (A) Clearing Agency’s Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change 1. Purpose OCC proposes amendments to its ByLaws and Rules designed to enhance the overall resilience of OCC’s Stock Loan/ Hedge Program by allowing OCC to close out the Matched-Book Positions of a Hedge Clearing Member requesting an orderly wind down of Matched-Book Positions through the termination by 3 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A)(iii). CFR 240.19b–4(f)(4)(i). 5 See Article XXI of OCC’s By-Laws and Chapter XXII of OCC’s Rules. It is also noted that no changes are being proposed to Article XXIA of OCC’s ByLaws or Chapter XXIIA of OCC’s Rules, which address OCC’s Market Loan Program. 6 Staff has inserted this sentence based on OCC’s request to clarify the use of capitalized terms by OCC in these statements prepared by OCC. 4 17 PO 00000 Frm 00099 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 7 Unique reason codes were created by the Depository for Clearing Members to designate stock loan transactions intended to be sent to OCC for novation and guarantee. 8 See OCC Rule 2202(a). 9 See OCC Rule 2202(b). 10 Id. 11 Mark-to-Market Payments are based on the value of the loaned securities and made between Clearing Members using OCC’s cash settlement system. The percentage of the value of the loaned securities, either 100% or 102%, is dependent upon the agreement between the two Hedge Clearing Members party to the transaction. E:\FR\FM\28MRN1.SGM 28MRN1 Lhorne on DSK5TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 17232 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 59 / Monday, March 28, 2016 / Notices Clearing Member. Settlements generally are combined and netted against other OCC settlement obligations in a Hedge Clearing Member’s account, including trade premiums and margin deficits. A Hedge Clearing Member’s open positions in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program are factored into the Hedge Clearing Member’s overall Margin 12 and Clearing Fund contribution requirements.13 A significant portion of the activity in OCC’s stock lending programs relates to what is often referred to as matchedbook activity where a Hedge Clearing Member maintains in an account a stock loan position for a specified number of shares of an Eligible Stock reflecting a stock lending transaction with one Hedge Clearing Member (the Borrowing Clearing Member) and also maintains in that same account a stock borrow position for the same number, or lesser number, of shares of the same Eligible Stock with another Hedge Clearing Member (the Lending Clearing Member) (such positions being ‘‘Matched-Book Positions’’). From a daily mark-tomarket settlement perspective, there are typically no obligations related to Matched-Book Positions because the member is simultaneously borrowing and lending the same securities (and quantity), which are marked to the same price. OCC’s margin process recognizes this and currently nets loans and borrows in the same security prior to calculating exposure, resulting in no margin on a perfectly matched position. Currently, in order for a Hedge Clearing Member to close out its stock loan positions, including Matched-Book Positions, the Hedge Clearing Member is required to terminate its loans through instructions issued to the Depository to transfer a specified quantity of the loaned stock against payment of the settlement price in accordance with the process prescribed in Rule 2208. Borrowing and Lending Clearing Member counterparties to the MatchedBook Positions that wish to maintain equivalent stock loan positions at OCC would then be required to initiate new stock loans, through the process described above, in accordance with Rule 2202. Throughout this process of terminating and reestablishing stock loan positions, a number of operational steps are required to effectuate and settle those transactions, which introduce the potential for market disruption. For example, because OCC maintains stock loan inventory on a bilateral basis (i.e., maintains the borrower and lender to a transaction) 12 See 13 See OCC Rules 601 and 2203. OCC Rule 1001. VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:52 Mar 25, 2016 Jkt 238001 and guarantees the return of cash collateral and the Loaned Stock, or price of the Loaned Stock, if a Hedge Clearing Member with Matched-Book Positions fails to fulfill its obligations for the recall of loans and return of borrowed shares, there would be a temporary imbalance of the previously ‘‘matchedbook’’ position. In addition, the successful initiation of new replacement stock loans for the Borrowing or Lending Clearing Members could be subject to disruption by operational or execution risks, with the result that one ‘‘leg’’ of the initiating transaction would fail. Moreover, the Borrowing and Lending Clearing Members lose the protections afforded by OCC’s guaranty of their stock loan positions until the newly initiated stock loan positions have been accepted, novated, and guaranteed by OCC. The proposed rule change would permit a Hedge Clearing Member to request the orderly wind down of Matched-Book Positions, subject to the agreement of all affected Borrowing and Lending Clearing Members, without requiring the transfer of securities against the payment of settlement prices as currently required under OCC Rules 2202, 2208 and 2209. OCC believes the proposed rule change would eliminate the potential risks described above associated with the transfer of securities and funds and provide the overall marketplace with more stability with respect to the process of voluntarily closing out Matched-Book Positions in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program. Voluntary Termination by Offset and Re-Matching OCC proposes to amend its By-Laws and Rules to permit a Hedge Clearing Member to request an orderly wind down of its Matched-Book Positions, contingent upon the explicit agreement of the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, its counterparty Borrowing Clearing Member, and counterparty Lending Clearing Member, and at the sole discretion of OCC, without requiring the transfer of securities against the payment of settlement prices as currently required under OCC’s rules. First, OCC proposes to amend Article I of its By-Laws to add new defined terms ‘‘Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member,’’ which would mean, with respect to any Matched-Book Positions, the Hedge Clearing Member that borrows Eligible Stock from a Hedge Clearing Member maintaining MatchedBook Positions in that Eligible Stock and ‘‘Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member,’’ which would mean, with respect to any Matched-Book Positions, the Hedge Clearing Member that lends PO 00000 Frm 00100 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Eligible Stock to a Hedge Clearing Member maintaining Matched-Book Positions in that Eligible Stock. OCC also proposes to add a new definition for ‘‘Matched-Book Positions,’’ which would be defined as Hedge Loan positions in which a single Hedge Clearing Member borrows Eligible Stock from its Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member and lends an equal or lesser amount of the same Eligible Stock to its Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member. In addition, OCC proposes to amend Rule 2208 to adopt new rules for the voluntary termination by offset and rematching of Matched-Book Positions. Specifically, OCC proposes to adopt new Rule 2208(e)(1), which would provide that a Hedge Clearing Member may submit a written request to OCC to effect one or more position adjustments to terminate by offset all or some of its Matched-Book Positions if the following conditions are met. First, the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, its MatchedBook Lending Clearing Member, and its Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member have furnished to the Corporation their written agreement to (i) the termination by offset of such Matched-Book Positions maintained in the requesting Hedge Clearing Member’s account and (ii) the Corporation’s rematching the stock borrow position for the same number of shares in the same Eligible Stock maintained in a designated account of the Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member against the stock loan position for the same number of shares in the same Eligible Stock maintained in a designated account of the Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member. Second, the written agreement furnished by the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member, and the Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member must be in the form specified by OCC. Third, the written request to terminate by offset and to re-match stock loan and borrow positions may be for less than the total number of shares of the Eligible Stock that is the subject of the stock loan and borrow positions maintained, as applicable, by the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member, and Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member, but must be for an equal number of shares. Additionally, proposed Rule 2208(e)(2) would provide that, if OCC in its sole discretion approves the requested termination by offset and rematching of positions, the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the MatchedBook Borrowing Clearing Member, and Matched-Book Lending Clearing E:\FR\FM\28MRN1.SGM 28MRN1 Lhorne on DSK5TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 59 / Monday, March 28, 2016 / Notices Member would not be required to issue instructions to the Depository to terminate such stock loans and stock borrow positions maintained in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program or to initiate new stock lending transactions for inclusion in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program as currently required under Rules 2202(a) and 2208(a). Proposed Rules 2208(e)(3) and (4) would provide that, from and after the time OCC has completed the requested position adjustments to terminate by offset and re-match the specified stock loan and borrow positions, the requesting Hedge Clearing Member would have no further obligation under the By-Laws and Rules with respect to such positions; however, the Borrowing Clearing Member with re-matched stock borrow positions remains obligated as a Borrowing Clearing Member and the Lending Clearing Member with rematched stock loan positions remains obligated as a Lending Clearing Member with respect to the re-matched positions as specified in the By-Laws and Rules applicable to the Stock Loan/Hedge Program. Proposed Rule 2208(e)(5) would require the requesting Hedge Clearing Member and re-matched Borrowing Clearing Member and Lending Clearing Member to make any necessary bookkeeping entries at the Depository necessitated by the termination by offset and re-matching upon notification that the termination by offset and rematching has been completed as set forth in proposed Rule 2209(h). In addition, OCC proposes to adopt new Rule 2209(h) to specify that, in the event of a termination by offset and rematching of a stock loan under proposed Rule 2208(e), such termination by offset and re-match shall be complete upon OCC completing all position adjustments in the accounts of the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member, and the Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member in accordance with Rule 2208(e) and the earlier of (i) communicating confirmation of the transaction in the form of direct written communications with the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the MatchedBook Borrowing Clearing Member, and the Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member or (ii) when systems reports are produced and provided to the Clearing Members reflecting the transaction. OCC also proposes conforming and clean-up changes to Article XXI, Sections 2, 3 and 4 of its By-Laws. Article XXI, Section 2 would be revised to (i) account for the netting of stock loan and stock borrow positions during the voluntary termination by offset and VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:52 Mar 25, 2016 Jkt 238001 17233 re-matching of Matched-Book Positions in accordance with proposed Rule 2208(e) and (ii) make clean-up changes to ensure the consistent use of the defined term ‘‘Eligible Stock.’’ Additionally, Article XXI, Sections 3 and 4 would be revised to state that the voluntary termination by offset of Matched-Book Positions in accordance with proposed Rule 2208(e) would be excluded from the requirement to pay the settlement price against delivery of the Loaned Stock as currently required for all terminations under OCC’s existing rules. Positions while ensuring the MatchedBook Borrowing and Matched-Book Lending Clearing Members’ positions are continuously protected by OCC’s guaranty. OCC therefore believes the proposed rule change is designed to promote the prompt and accurate clearance of settlement of securities transactions, the safeguarding of securities and funds in the custody or control of OCC or for which it is responsible and, in general, to protect investors and the public interest in accordance with Section 17A(b)(3)(F) of the Act.15 2. Statutory Basis OCC believes the proposed rule change is consistent with Section 17A(b)(3)(F) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the ‘‘Act’’),14 and the rules thereunder applicable to OCC. The proposed rule change would allow OCC to close out the MatchedBook Positions of Hedge Clearing Members, which could include distressed Hedge Clearing Members or Hedge Clearing Members otherwise wishing to wind down their MatchedBook Positions in an orderly manner, through the termination by offset and rematching of such positions. As described above, under OCC’s existing rules, the close out of Matched-Book Positions requires the transfer of securities against the payment of settlement prices. Moreover, to the extent Borrowing and Lending Clearing Member counterparties to the MatchedBook Positions wish to continue to maintain equivalent stock loan positions at OCC, those members would be required to initiate new stock loans to replace the closed out positions. Throughout this process of terminating and reestablishing stock loan positions, a number of operational steps are required to effectuate and settle those transactions, which introduce the potential for execution and operational risks and thereby pose risks to the prompt and accurate clearance and settlement of securities transactions and the safeguarding of securities and funds associated therewith. The proposed rule change would eliminate these risks by allowing OCC and its Hedge Clearing Members to close out Matched-Book Positions through a process of termination by offset and rematching without requiring the transfer of securities and funds. Moreover, due to the nature of Matched-Book Positions, the proposed position adjustments would enable the requesting Hedge Clearing Member to orderly wind down its Matched-Book (B) Clearing Agency’s Statement on Burden on Competition OCC does not believe that the proposed rule change would have any impact or impose any burden on competition.16 The proposed rules would be equally applicable to all Hedge Clearing Members at OCC. The proposed rule change is designed to allow for the termination by offset and re-matching of Matched-Book Positions without requiring the transfer of securities and funds between Hedge Clearing Members and exposing OCC’s members to the risks attendant to such transfers (as described in detail above). Accordingly, OCC does not believe that the proposed rule change would have any impact or impose any burden on competition. 14 15 PO 00000 U.S.C. 78q–1(b)(3)(F). Frm 00101 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 (C) Clearing Agency’s Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change Received From Members, Participants or Others Written comments on the proposed rule change were not and are not intended to be solicited with respect to the proposed rule change and none have been received. III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action The foregoing rule change has become effective upon filing 17 pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A)(iii) of the Act 18 and Rule 19b–4(f)(4)(i) thereunder 19 as it effects a change in an existing service of a registered clearing agency that (1) does not adversely affect the safeguarding of securities or funds in the custody or control of the clearing agency or for which it is responsible and (2) does not significantly affect the respective rights 15 Id. 16 15 U.S.C. 78q–1(b)(3)(I). its immediate effectiveness, implementation of this rule change will be delayed until this change is deemed certified under CFTC Regulation § 40.6. 18 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A)(iii). 19 17 CFR 240.19b–4(f)(4)(i). 17 Notwithstanding E:\FR\FM\28MRN1.SGM 28MRN1 17234 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 59 / Monday, March 28, 2016 / Notices or obligations of the clearing agency or persons using the service. At any time within 60 days of the filing of the proposed rule change, the Commission summarily may temporarily suspend 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: Lhorne on DSK5TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Electronic Comments • Use the Commission’s Internet comment form (http://www.sec.gov/ rules/sro.shtml); or • Send an email to rule-comments@ sec.gov. Please include File Number SR– OCC–2016–006 on the subject line. Paper Comments • Send paper comments in triplicate to Brent J. Fields, Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549–1090. All submissions should refer to File Number SR–OCC–2016–006. This file number should be included on the subject line if email 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 Web site viewing and printing in the Commission’s Public Reference Room, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549, on official business days between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Copies of such filing also will be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of OCC and on OCC’s Web site at http://www.theocc.com/components/ docs/legal/rules_and_bylaws/sr_occ_16_ 006.pdf. All comments received will be posted without change; the Commission does VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:52 Mar 25, 2016 Jkt 238001 not edit personal identifying information from submissions. You should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly. All submissions should refer to File Number SR–OCC–2016–006 and should be submitted on or before April 18, 2016. For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, pursuant to delegated authority.20 Brent J. Fields, Secretary. [FR Doc. 2016–06862 Filed 3–25–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8011–01–P SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION [License No. 04/04–0325] Plexus Fund QP III, L.P.; Notice Seeking Exemption Under Section 312 of the Small Business Investment Act, Conflicts of Interest Notice is hereby given that Plexus Fund QP III, L.P., 200 Providence Road, Suite 210, Charlotte, NC 28207, a Federal Licensee under the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, as amended (‘‘the Act’’), in connection with the financing of Mission Critical Electronics, Inc., 2911 West Garry Avenue, Santa Ana, CA 92704, has sought an exemption under Section 312 of the Act and 13 CFR 107.730 financings which constitute conflicts of interest of the Small Business Administration (‘‘SBA’’) Rules and Regulations. Plexus Fund QP III, L.P. proposes to provide debt financing to Mission Critical Electronics, Inc., that will be used to discharge an obligation to Plexus Fund II, L.P., an associate. Therefore this transaction is considered a conflict of interest requiring SBA’s prior written exemption. Notice is hereby given that any interested person may submit written comments on the transaction, within fifteen days of the date of this publication, to the Associate Administrator for Investment, U.S. Small Business Administration, 409 Third Street SW., Washington, DC 20416. Mark Walsh, Associate Administrator for Office of Investment and Innovation. [FR Doc. 2016–06879 Filed 3–25–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P 20 17 PO 00000 CFR 200.30–3(a)(12). Frm 00102 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION [License No. 04/04–0324] Plexus Fund III, L.P.; Notice Seeking Exemption Under Section 312 of the Small Business Investment Act, Conflicts of Interest Notice is hereby given that Plexus Fund III, L.P., 200 Providence Road, Suite 210, Charlotte, NC 28207, a Federal Licensee under the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, as amended (‘‘the Act’’), in connection with the financing of Mission Critical Electronics, Inc., 2911 West Garry Avenue, Santa Ana, CA 92704, has sought an exemption under Section 312 of the Act and 13 CFR 107.730 financings which constitute conflicts of interest of the Small Business Administration (‘‘SBA’’) Rules and Regulations. Plexus Fund III, L.P. proposes to provide debt financing to Mission Critical Electronics, Inc., that will be used to discharge an obligation to Plexus Fund II, L.P., an associate. Therefore this transaction is considered a conflict of interest requiring SBA’s prior written exemption. Notice is hereby given that any interested person may submit written comments on the transaction, within fifteen days of the date of this publication, to the Associate Administrator for Investment, U.S. Small Business Administration, 409 Third Street SW., Washington, DC 20416. Mark Walsh, Associate Administrator for Office of Investment and Innovation. [FR Doc. 2016–06878 Filed 3–25–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION [Disaster Declaration #14675 and #14676] Texas Disaster #TX–00465 U.S. Small Business Administration. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: This is a Notice of the Presidential declaration of a major disaster for the State of Texas (FEMA– 4266–DR), dated 03/19/2016. Incident: Severe Storms, Tornadoes, and Flooding. Incident Period: 03/07/2016 and continuing. Effective Date: 03/19/2016. Physical Loan Application Deadline Date: 05/18/2016. Economic Injury (EIDL) Loan Application Deadline Date: 12/19/2016. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\28MRN1.SGM 28MRN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 59 (Monday, March 28, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 17231-17234]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-06862]


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SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

[Release No. 34-77415; File No. SR-OCC-2016-006]


Self-Regulatory Organizations; The Options Clearing Corporation; 
Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change 
Related to the Voluntary Termination by Offset and Re-Matching of 
Matched-Book Positions in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program

March 22, 2016.
    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 March 15, 2016, The Options Clearing Corporation (``OCC'') filed 
with the Securities and Exchange Commission (``Commission'') the 
proposed rule change as described in Items I, II, and III below, which 
Items have been prepared primarily by OCC. OCC filed the proposed rule 
change pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A)(iii) \3\ of the Act and Rule 
19b-4(f)(4)(i) \4\ thereunder so that the proposal was effective upon 
filing with the Commission. The Commission is publishing this notice to 
solicit comments on the rule change from interested persons.
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    \1\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1).
    \2\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4.
    \3\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A)(iii).
    \4\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(4)(i).
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I. Clearing Agency's Statement of the Terms of Substance of the 
Proposed Rule Change

    The purpose of this proposed rule change is to enhance the overall 
resilience of OCC's Stock Loan/Hedge Program \5\ by allowing OCC to 
close out the Matched-Book Positions (as defined herein) of Hedge 
Clearing Members requesting an orderly wind down of Matched-Book 
Positions through the termination by offset and ``re-matching'' of such 
positions without requiring the transfer of securities against the 
payment of settlement prices as currently required under OCC's rules. 
All capitalized terms not defined herein have the same meaning as in 
OCC's By-Laws and Rules.\6\
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    \5\ See Article XXI of OCC's By-Laws and Chapter XXII of OCC's 
Rules. It is also noted that no changes are being proposed to 
Article XXIA of OCC's By-Laws or Chapter XXIIA of OCC's Rules, which 
address OCC's Market Loan Program.
    \6\ Staff has inserted this sentence based on OCC's request to 
clarify the use of capitalized terms by OCC in these statements 
prepared by OCC.
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II. Clearing Agency's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis 
for, the Proposed Rule Change

    In its filing with the Commission, OCC 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. OCC has prepared summaries, set forth in sections (A), 
(B), and (C) below, of the most significant aspects of these 
statements.

(A) Clearing Agency's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis 
for, the Proposed Rule Change

1. Purpose
    OCC proposes amendments to its By-Laws and Rules designed to 
enhance the overall resilience of OCC's Stock Loan/Hedge Program by 
allowing OCC to close out the Matched-Book Positions of a Hedge 
Clearing Member requesting an orderly wind down of Matched-Book 
Positions through the termination by offset and re-matching of such 
positions without requiring the transfer of securities against the 
payment of settlement prices as currently required under OCC's rules. 
The proposed termination by offset and re-matching of stock loan and 
borrow positions is designed to leave the affected Clearing Members 
with the same net position in such stock loan and borrow positions as 
prior to the adjustment.
Background
    In the Stock Loan/Hedge Program, OCC acts as a central counterparty 
(``CCP'') for Hedge Loans that are directly negotiated by Hedge 
Clearing Members and sent to OCC for clearance and settlement. A 
prospective Lending Clearing Member and a prospective Borrowing 
Clearing Member identify each other (independent of OCC) and agree on 
the terms of the stock loan. The Hedge Clearing Members then send the 
details of the stock loan to The Depository Trust Company 
(``Depository'') with a certain ``reason code,'' \7\ which designates 
the stock loan as a Hedge Loan for guaranty and clearance at OCC. The 
Lending Clearing Member instructs the Depository to transfer a 
specified number of shares of Eligible Stock to the account of the 
Borrowing Clearing Member, and the Borrowing Clearing Member instructs 
the Depository to transfer the appropriate amount of cash collateral to 
the account of the Lending Clearing Member.\8\ The Depository then 
sends the Hedge Loan information to OCC via an end-of-day report.\9\ 
After OCC receives the report from the Depository, OCC validates and 
novates the stock loan transaction and becomes the lender to the 
Borrowing Clearing Member and the borrower to the Lending Clearing 
Member.\10\
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    \7\ Unique reason codes were created by the Depository for 
Clearing Members to designate stock loan transactions intended to be 
sent to OCC for novation and guarantee.
    \8\ See OCC Rule 2202(a).
    \9\ See OCC Rule 2202(b).
    \10\ Id.
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    After novation, as part of the guaranty, OCC makes Mark-to-Market 
Payments for all Hedge Loans on a daily basis to collateralize all 
loans to the negotiated levels.\11\ As the CCP, OCC guarantees the 
return of the full value of cash collateral to a Borrowing Clearing 
Member and the Loaned Stock, or value of that Loaned Stock, to the 
Lending

[[Page 17232]]

Clearing Member. Settlements generally are combined and netted against 
other OCC settlement obligations in a Hedge Clearing Member's account, 
including trade premiums and margin deficits. A Hedge Clearing Member's 
open positions in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program are factored into the 
Hedge Clearing Member's overall Margin \12\ and Clearing Fund 
contribution requirements.\13\
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    \11\ Mark-to-Market Payments are based on the value of the 
loaned securities and made between Clearing Members using OCC's cash 
settlement system. The percentage of the value of the loaned 
securities, either 100% or 102%, is dependent upon the agreement 
between the two Hedge Clearing Members party to the transaction.
    \12\ See OCC Rules 601 and 2203.
    \13\ See OCC Rule 1001.
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    A significant portion of the activity in OCC's stock lending 
programs relates to what is often referred to as matched-book activity 
where a Hedge Clearing Member maintains in an account a stock loan 
position for a specified number of shares of an Eligible Stock 
reflecting a stock lending transaction with one Hedge Clearing Member 
(the Borrowing Clearing Member) and also maintains in that same account 
a stock borrow position for the same number, or lesser number, of 
shares of the same Eligible Stock with another Hedge Clearing Member 
(the Lending Clearing Member) (such positions being ``Matched-Book 
Positions''). From a daily mark-to-market settlement perspective, there 
are typically no obligations related to Matched-Book Positions because 
the member is simultaneously borrowing and lending the same securities 
(and quantity), which are marked to the same price. OCC's margin 
process recognizes this and currently nets loans and borrows in the 
same security prior to calculating exposure, resulting in no margin on 
a perfectly matched position.
    Currently, in order for a Hedge Clearing Member to close out its 
stock loan positions, including Matched-Book Positions, the Hedge 
Clearing Member is required to terminate its loans through instructions 
issued to the Depository to transfer a specified quantity of the loaned 
stock against payment of the settlement price in accordance with the 
process prescribed in Rule 2208. Borrowing and Lending Clearing Member 
counterparties to the Matched-Book Positions that wish to maintain 
equivalent stock loan positions at OCC would then be required to 
initiate new stock loans, through the process described above, in 
accordance with Rule 2202. Throughout this process of terminating and 
reestablishing stock loan positions, a number of operational steps are 
required to effectuate and settle those transactions, which introduce 
the potential for market disruption. For example, because OCC maintains 
stock loan inventory on a bilateral basis (i.e., maintains the borrower 
and lender to a transaction) and guarantees the return of cash 
collateral and the Loaned Stock, or price of the Loaned Stock, if a 
Hedge Clearing Member with Matched-Book Positions fails to fulfill its 
obligations for the recall of loans and return of borrowed shares, 
there would be a temporary imbalance of the previously ``matched-book'' 
position. In addition, the successful initiation of new replacement 
stock loans for the Borrowing or Lending Clearing Members could be 
subject to disruption by operational or execution risks, with the 
result that one ``leg'' of the initiating transaction would fail. 
Moreover, the Borrowing and Lending Clearing Members lose the 
protections afforded by OCC's guaranty of their stock loan positions 
until the newly initiated stock loan positions have been accepted, 
novated, and guaranteed by OCC.
    The proposed rule change would permit a Hedge Clearing Member to 
request the orderly wind down of Matched-Book Positions, subject to the 
agreement of all affected Borrowing and Lending Clearing Members, 
without requiring the transfer of securities against the payment of 
settlement prices as currently required under OCC Rules 2202, 2208 and 
2209. OCC believes the proposed rule change would eliminate the 
potential risks described above associated with the transfer of 
securities and funds and provide the overall marketplace with more 
stability with respect to the process of voluntarily closing out 
Matched-Book Positions in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program.
Voluntary Termination by Offset and Re-Matching
    OCC proposes to amend its By-Laws and Rules to permit a Hedge 
Clearing Member to request an orderly wind down of its Matched-Book 
Positions, contingent upon the explicit agreement of the requesting 
Hedge Clearing Member, its counterparty Borrowing Clearing Member, and 
counterparty Lending Clearing Member, and at the sole discretion of 
OCC, without requiring the transfer of securities against the payment 
of settlement prices as currently required under OCC's rules. First, 
OCC proposes to amend Article I of its By-Laws to add new defined terms 
``Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member,'' which would mean, with 
respect to any Matched-Book Positions, the Hedge Clearing Member that 
borrows Eligible Stock from a Hedge Clearing Member maintaining 
Matched-Book Positions in that Eligible Stock and ``Matched-Book 
Lending Clearing Member,'' which would mean, with respect to any 
Matched-Book Positions, the Hedge Clearing Member that lends Eligible 
Stock to a Hedge Clearing Member maintaining Matched-Book Positions in 
that Eligible Stock. OCC also proposes to add a new definition for 
``Matched-Book Positions,'' which would be defined as Hedge Loan 
positions in which a single Hedge Clearing Member borrows Eligible 
Stock from its Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member and lends an equal 
or lesser amount of the same Eligible Stock to its Matched-Book 
Borrowing Clearing Member.
    In addition, OCC proposes to amend Rule 2208 to adopt new rules for 
the voluntary termination by offset and re-matching of Matched-Book 
Positions. Specifically, OCC proposes to adopt new Rule 2208(e)(1), 
which would provide that a Hedge Clearing Member may submit a written 
request to OCC to effect one or more position adjustments to terminate 
by offset all or some of its Matched-Book Positions if the following 
conditions are met. First, the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, its 
Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member, and its Matched-Book Borrowing 
Clearing Member have furnished to the Corporation their written 
agreement to (i) the termination by offset of such Matched-Book 
Positions maintained in the requesting Hedge Clearing Member's account 
and (ii) the Corporation's re-matching the stock borrow position for 
the same number of shares in the same Eligible Stock maintained in a 
designated account of the Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member 
against the stock loan position for the same number of shares in the 
same Eligible Stock maintained in a designated account of the Matched-
Book Lending Clearing Member. Second, the written agreement furnished 
by the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the Matched-Book Borrowing 
Clearing Member, and the Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member must be 
in the form specified by OCC. Third, the written request to terminate 
by offset and to re-match stock loan and borrow positions may be for 
less than the total number of shares of the Eligible Stock that is the 
subject of the stock loan and borrow positions maintained, as 
applicable, by the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the Matched-Book 
Borrowing Clearing Member, and Matched-Book Lending Clearing Member, 
but must be for an equal number of shares.
    Additionally, proposed Rule 2208(e)(2) would provide that, if OCC 
in its sole discretion approves the requested termination by offset and 
re-matching of positions, the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the 
Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member, and Matched-Book Lending 
Clearing

[[Page 17233]]

Member would not be required to issue instructions to the Depository to 
terminate such stock loans and stock borrow positions maintained in the 
Stock Loan/Hedge Program or to initiate new stock lending transactions 
for inclusion in the Stock Loan/Hedge Program as currently required 
under Rules 2202(a) and 2208(a).
    Proposed Rules 2208(e)(3) and (4) would provide that, from and 
after the time OCC has completed the requested position adjustments to 
terminate by offset and re-match the specified stock loan and borrow 
positions, the requesting Hedge Clearing Member would have no further 
obligation under the By-Laws and Rules with respect to such positions; 
however, the Borrowing Clearing Member with re-matched stock borrow 
positions remains obligated as a Borrowing Clearing Member and the 
Lending Clearing Member with re-matched stock loan positions remains 
obligated as a Lending Clearing Member with respect to the re-matched 
positions as specified in the By-Laws and Rules applicable to the Stock 
Loan/Hedge Program.
    Proposed Rule 2208(e)(5) would require the requesting Hedge 
Clearing Member and re-matched Borrowing Clearing Member and Lending 
Clearing Member to make any necessary bookkeeping entries at the 
Depository necessitated by the termination by offset and re-matching 
upon notification that the termination by offset and re-matching has 
been completed as set forth in proposed Rule 2209(h).
    In addition, OCC proposes to adopt new Rule 2209(h) to specify 
that, in the event of a termination by offset and re-matching of a 
stock loan under proposed Rule 2208(e), such termination by offset and 
re-match shall be complete upon OCC completing all position adjustments 
in the accounts of the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the Matched-
Book Borrowing Clearing Member, and the Matched-Book Lending Clearing 
Member in accordance with Rule 2208(e) and the earlier of (i) 
communicating confirmation of the transaction in the form of direct 
written communications with the requesting Hedge Clearing Member, the 
Matched-Book Borrowing Clearing Member, and the Matched-Book Lending 
Clearing Member or (ii) when systems reports are produced and provided 
to the Clearing Members reflecting the transaction.
    OCC also proposes conforming and clean-up changes to Article XXI, 
Sections 2, 3 and 4 of its By-Laws. Article XXI, Section 2 would be 
revised to (i) account for the netting of stock loan and stock borrow 
positions during the voluntary termination by offset and re-matching of 
Matched-Book Positions in accordance with proposed Rule 2208(e) and 
(ii) make clean-up changes to ensure the consistent use of the defined 
term ``Eligible Stock.'' Additionally, Article XXI, Sections 3 and 4 
would be revised to state that the voluntary termination by offset of 
Matched-Book Positions in accordance with proposed Rule 2208(e) would 
be excluded from the requirement to pay the settlement price against 
delivery of the Loaned Stock as currently required for all terminations 
under OCC's existing rules.
2. Statutory Basis
    OCC believes the proposed rule change is consistent with Section 
17A(b)(3)(F) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the 
``Act''),\14\ and the rules thereunder applicable to OCC. The proposed 
rule change would allow OCC to close out the Matched-Book Positions of 
Hedge Clearing Members, which could include distressed Hedge Clearing 
Members or Hedge Clearing Members otherwise wishing to wind down their 
Matched-Book Positions in an orderly manner, through the termination by 
offset and re-matching of such positions. As described above, under 
OCC's existing rules, the close out of Matched-Book Positions requires 
the transfer of securities against the payment of settlement prices. 
Moreover, to the extent Borrowing and Lending Clearing Member 
counterparties to the Matched-Book Positions wish to continue to 
maintain equivalent stock loan positions at OCC, those members would be 
required to initiate new stock loans to replace the closed out 
positions. Throughout this process of terminating and reestablishing 
stock loan positions, a number of operational steps are required to 
effectuate and settle those transactions, which introduce the potential 
for execution and operational risks and thereby pose risks to the 
prompt and accurate clearance and settlement of securities transactions 
and the safeguarding of securities and funds associated therewith.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \14\ 15 U.S.C. 78q-1(b)(3)(F).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The proposed rule change would eliminate these risks by allowing 
OCC and its Hedge Clearing Members to close out Matched-Book Positions 
through a process of termination by offset and re-matching without 
requiring the transfer of securities and funds. Moreover, due to the 
nature of Matched-Book Positions, the proposed position adjustments 
would enable the requesting Hedge Clearing Member to orderly wind down 
its Matched-Book Positions while ensuring the Matched-Book Borrowing 
and Matched-Book Lending Clearing Members' positions are continuously 
protected by OCC's guaranty. OCC therefore believes the proposed rule 
change is designed to promote the prompt and accurate clearance of 
settlement of securities transactions, the safeguarding of securities 
and funds in the custody or control of OCC or for which it is 
responsible and, in general, to protect investors and the public 
interest in accordance with Section 17A(b)(3)(F) of the Act.\15\
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    \15\ Id.
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(B) Clearing Agency's Statement on Burden on Competition

    OCC does not believe that the proposed rule change would have any 
impact or impose any burden on competition.\16\ The proposed rules 
would be equally applicable to all Hedge Clearing Members at OCC. The 
proposed rule change is designed to allow for the termination by offset 
and re-matching of Matched-Book Positions without requiring the 
transfer of securities and funds between Hedge Clearing Members and 
exposing OCC's members to the risks attendant to such transfers (as 
described in detail above). Accordingly, OCC does not believe that the 
proposed rule change would have any impact or impose any burden on 
competition.
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    \16\ 15 U.S.C. 78q-1(b)(3)(I).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

(C) Clearing Agency's Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change 
Received From Members, Participants or Others

    Written comments on the proposed rule change were not and are not 
intended to be solicited with respect to the proposed rule change and 
none have been received.

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

    The foregoing rule change has become effective upon filing \17\ 
pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A)(iii) of the Act \18\ and Rule 19b-
4(f)(4)(i) thereunder \19\ as it effects a change in an existing 
service of a registered clearing agency that (1) does not adversely 
affect the safeguarding of securities or funds in the custody or 
control of the clearing agency or for which it is responsible and (2) 
does not significantly affect the respective rights

[[Page 17234]]

or obligations of the clearing agency or persons using the service. At 
any time within 60 days of the filing of the proposed rule change, the 
Commission summarily may temporarily suspend 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.
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    \17\ Notwithstanding its immediate effectiveness, implementation 
of this rule change will be delayed until this change is deemed 
certified under CFTC Regulation Sec.  40.6.
    \18\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A)(iii).
    \19\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(4)(i).
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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 email to rule-comments@sec.gov. Please include 
File Number SR-OCC-2016-006 on the subject line.

Paper Comments

     Send paper comments in triplicate to Brent J. Fields, 
Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street NE., 
Washington, DC 20549-1090.

All submissions should refer to File Number SR-OCC-2016-006. This file 
number should be included on the subject line if email 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 Web site viewing and 
printing in the Commission's Public Reference Room, 100 F Street NE., 
Washington, DC 20549, on official business days between the hours of 
10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Copies of such filing also will be available 
for inspection and copying at the principal office of OCC and on OCC's 
Web site at http://www.theocc.com/components/docs/legal/rules_and_bylaws/sr_occ_16_006.pdf.
    All comments received will be posted without change; the Commission 
does not edit personal identifying information from submissions. You 
should submit only information that you wish to make available 
publicly. All submissions should refer to File Number SR-OCC-2016-006 
and should be submitted on or before April 18, 2016.
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    \20\ 17 CFR 200.30-3(a)(12).

    For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, 
pursuant to delegated authority.\20\
Brent J. Fields,
Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2016-06862 Filed 3-25-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 8011-01-P