Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ BX, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend BX Rules at Chapter IV, Section 6, 36046-36049 [2017-16271]

Download as PDF 36046 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 147 / Wednesday, August 2, 2017 / Notices In approving the proposed rule change, the Commission also has considered the impact of the proposed rule change, as modified by Amendment No. 1, on efficiency, competition, and capital formation.140 The Commission does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose any burden on competition not necessary or appropriate in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. The Commission believes the proposed rule change would apply equally to all municipal securities brokers and municipal securities dealers and may reduce inefficiencies that stem from uncertainty and confusion associated with existing Rule G–26. The Commission believes that the clarifications and revisions included in the proposed rule change will likely result in dealers processing of customer account transfers by dealer in a manner that more closely reflects the securities industry standard, which may, in turn, reduce operational risk to dealers and investors. Furthermore, the Commission believes that the proposed rule change will likely make the transfer of customer municipal securities account assets more flexible, less burdensome, and more efficient, while reducing confusion and risk to investors and allowing them to more efficiently and effectively transfer their municipal securities to their dealer of choice. As noted above, the Commission received two comment letters on the filing. The Commission believes that the MSRB, through its responses and through Amendment No. 1, has addressed commenters’ concerns. For the reasons noted above, the Commission believes that the proposed rule change, as modified by Amendment No. 1, is consistent with the Act. V. Solicitation of Comments on Amendment No. 1 Interested persons are invited to submit written data, views, and arguments concerning the foregoing, including whether Amendment No. 1 to the proposed rule change is consistent with the Act. Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods: sradovich on DSKBCFCHB2PROD with NOTICES Electronic Comments • Use of 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– MSRB–2017–03 on the subject line. 140 15 U.S.C. 78c(f). VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:43 Aug 01, 2017 Jkt 241001 Paper Comments • Send paper comments in triplicate to Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549. All submissions should refer to File Number SR–MSRB–2017–03. 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 the filing also will be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the MSRB. 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–MSRB– 2017–03 and should be submitted on or before August 23, 2017. VI. Accelerated Approval of Proposed Rule Change, as Modified by Amendment No. 1 The Commission finds good cause for approving the proposed rule change, as amended by Amendment No. 1, prior to the 30th day after the date of publication of notice of Amendment No. 1 in the Federal Register. As discussed above, Amendment No. 1 modifies the proposed rule change by proposing a longer implementation period of six months rather than the previously proposed three months. The MSRB has proposed the revisions included in Amendment No. 1 to provide a sufficient amount of time for dealers to effect any changes necessary to achieve compliance with the proposed rule change. As noted by the MSRB, Amendment No. 1 does not alter the substance of the original proposed rule change and only provides a lengthier PO 00000 Frm 00121 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 implementation period to address a commenter’s concern and ease the limited burden of the proposed rule change on dealers. For the foregoing reasons, the Commission finds good cause for approving the proposed rule change, as modified by Amendment No. 1, on an accelerated basis, pursuant to Section 19(b)(2) of the Act. VIII. Conclusion It is therefore ordered, pursuant to Section 19(b)(2) of the Act,141 that the proposed rule change (SR–MSRB–2017– 03) be, and hereby is, approved. For the Commission, pursuant to delegated authority.142 Eduardo A. Aleman, Assistant Secretary. [FR Doc. 2017–16213 Filed 8–1–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8011–01–P SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34–81251; File No. SR–BX– 2017–034] Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ BX, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend BX Rules at Chapter IV, Section 6 July 28, 2017. Pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the ‘‘Act’’),1 and Rule 19b–4 thereunder,2 notice is hereby given that on July 27, 2017, NASDAQ BX, Inc. (‘‘BX’’ or ‘‘Exchange’’) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the ‘‘Commission’’) the proposed rule change as described in Items I and II below, which Items have been prepared by the Exchange. 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 the Substance of the Proposed Rule Change The Exchange proposes to amend BX Rules at Chapter IV, Section 6, entitled ‘‘Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading.’’ The text of the proposed rule change is set forth below. Proposed new language is italicized; deleted text is in brackets. * * * * * 141 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(2). CFR 200.30–3(a)(12). 1 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1). 2 17 CFR 240.19b-4. 142 17 E:\FR\FM\02AUN1.SGM 02AUN1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 147 / Wednesday, August 2, 2017 / Notices Rules of NASDAQ BX * * * * * * * Options Rules * * * Chapter IV Securities Traded on BX Options * * * * * Sec. 6 Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading (a)–(g) No change. Supplementary Material to Section 6 .01 (a) and (b) No change. (c) Notwithstanding any other provision regarding the interval of strike prices of series of options on ExchangeTraded Fund Shares in this rule, the interval of strike prices on SPDR® S&P 500® ETF (‘‘SPY’’), iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (‘‘IVV’’), and the SPDR® Dow Jones® Industrial Average ETF (‘‘DIA’’) options will be $1 or greater. (d)–(f) No change. .02–.09 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 Exchange 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 Exchange 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 sradovich on DSKBCFCHB2PROD with NOTICES 1. Purpose The Exchange proposes to amend NOM [sic] Rules at Chapter IV, Section 6, entitled ‘‘Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading’’ by modifying the strike setting regime for the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (‘‘IVV’’) options. Specifically, the Exchange proposes to modify the interval setting regime for IVV options to allow $1 strike price intervals above $200. The Exchange believes that the proposed rule change would make IVV options easier for investors and traders to use and more tailored to their investment needs. Additionally, the interval setting regime the Exchange VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:43 Aug 01, 2017 Jkt 241001 proposes to apply to IVV options is currently applied to options on units of the Standard & Poor’s Depository Receipts Trust (‘‘SPY’’),3 which is an exchange-traded fund (‘‘ETF’’) that is identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF. The SPY and IVV ETFs are identical in all material respects. The SPY and IVV ETFs are designed to roughly track the performance of the S&P 500 Index with the price of SPY and IVV designed to roughly approximate 1/10th of the price of the S&P 500 Index. Accordingly, SPY and IVV strike prices—having a multiplier of $100— reflect a value roughly equal to 1/10th of the value of the S&P 500 Index. For example, if the S&P 500 Index is at 1972.56, SPY and IVV options might have a value of approximately 197.26 with a notional value of $19,726. In general, SPY and IVV options provide retail investors and traders with the benefit of trading the broad market in a manageably sized contract. As options with an ETP underlying, SPY and IVV options are listed in the same manner as equity options under the Rules. However, pursuant to current Supplementary Material .01 to Chapter IV, Section 6, the interval between strike prices in series of options on ETPs, including IVV options will be $1 or greater where the strike price is $200 or less and $5.00 or greater where the strike price is greater than $200. In addition, pursuant to Supplementary Material .07(e) to Chapter IV, Section 6, The interval between strike prices on Short Term Option Series may be (i) $0.50 or greater where the strike price is less than $100, and $1 or greater where the strike price is between $100 and $150 for all classes that participate in the Short Term Options Series Program; (ii) $0.50 for classes that trade in one dollar increments in Related non-Short Term Options and that participate in the Short Term Option Series Program; or (iii) $2.50 or greater where the strike price is above $150. Related non-Short Term Option series shall be opened during the month prior to expiration of such Related non-Short Term Option series in the same manner as permitted in Supplementary Material to Section 6 at .07 and in the same strike price intervals that are permitted in Supplementary Material to Section 6 at .07. The Exchange’s proposal seeks to narrow the strike price intervals to $1 for IVV options above $200, in effect matching the strike setting regime for strike intervals in IVV options below $200 and matching the strike setting 3 See Supplementary Material .01(c) to Chapter IV, Section 6. See also Securities Exchange Act Release No. 80913 (June 13, 2017), 82 FR 27907 (June 19, 2017) (SR–CBOE–2017–048) (Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change Related to Rule 5.5). PO 00000 Frm 00122 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 36047 regime applied to SPY options. Currently, the S&P 500 Index is above 2000. The S&P 500 Index is widely regarded as the best single gauge of large cap U.S. equities and is widely quoted as an indicator of stock prices and investor confidence in the securities market. As a result, individual investors often use S&P 500 Index-related products to diversify their portfolios and benefit from market trends. Accordingly, the Exchange believes that offering a wide range of S&P 500 Indexbased options affords traders and investors important hedging and trading opportunities. The Exchange believes that not having the proposed $1 strike price intervals above $200 in IVV significantly constricts investors’ hedging and trading possibilities. The Exchange proposes to amend Supplementary Material .01(c) of Chapter IV, Section 6 to allow IVV options to trade in $1 increments above a strike price of $200. Specifically, the Exchange proposes to amend Supplementary Material .01(c) of Chapter IV, Section 6 to state that notwithstanding other provisions limiting the ability of the Exchange to list $1 increment strike prices on equity and ETF options above $200, the interval between strike prices of series of options on Units of IVV will be $1 or greater. The Exchange believes that by having smaller strike intervals in IVV, investors would have more efficient hedging and trading opportunities due to the lower $1 interval ascension. The proposed $1 intervals, particularly above the $200 strike price, will result in having at-the-money series based upon the underlying IVV moving less than 1%. The Exchange believes that the proposed strike setting regime is in line with the slower movements of broadbased indices. Furthermore, the proposed $1 intervals would allow option trading strategies (such as, for example, risk reduction/hedging strategies using IVV weekly options), to remain viable. Considering the fact that $1 intervals already exist below the $200 price point and that IVV is above the $200 level, the Exchange believes that continuing to maintain the artificial $200 level (above which intervals increase by $5), would have a negative effect on investing, trading and hedging opportunities, and volume. The Exchange believes that the investing, trading, and hedging opportunities available with IVV options far outweighs any potential negative impact of allowing IVV options to trade in more finely tailored intervals above the $200 price point. The proposed strike setting regime would E:\FR\FM\02AUN1.SGM 02AUN1 36048 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 147 / Wednesday, August 2, 2017 / Notices sradovich on DSKBCFCHB2PROD with NOTICES permit strikes to be set to more closely reflect values in the underlying S&P 500 Index and allow investors and traders to roll open positions from a lower strike to a higher strike in conjunction with the price movement of the underlying. Pursuant to Chapter IV, Section 6, where the next higher available series would be $5 away above a $200 strike price, the ability to roll such positions is effectively negated. Accordingly, to move a position from a $200 strike to a $205 strike pursuant to the current rule, an investor would need for the underlying product to move 2.5%, and would not be able to execute a roll up until such a large movement occurred. With the proposed rule change, however, the investor would be in a significantly safer position of being able to roll his open options position from a $200 to a $201 strike price, which is only a 0.5% move for the underlying. The proposed rule change will allow the Exchange to better respond to customer demand for IVV strike prices more precisely aligned with current S&P 500 Index values. The Exchange believes that the proposed rule change, like the other strike price programs currently offered by the Exchange, will benefit investors by providing investors the flexibility to more closely tailor their investment and hedging decisions using IVV options. By allowing series of IVV options to be listed in $1 intervals between strike prices over $200, the proposal will moderately augment the potential total number of options series available on the Exchange. However, the Exchange believes it and the Options Price Reporting Authority (‘‘OPRA’’) have the necessary systems capacity to handle any potential additional traffic associated with this proposed rule change. The Exchange also believes that Participants will not have a capacity issue due to the proposed rule change. In addition, the Exchange represents that it does not believe that this expansion will cause fragmentation of liquidity. In addition, the interval setting regime the Exchange proposes to apply to IVV options is currently applied to options on SPY,4 which is an ETF that is identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF. 2. Statutory Basis The Exchange believes that its proposal is consistent with Section 6(b) of the Act,5 in general, and furthers the objectives of Section 6(b)(5) of the Act,6 in particular.7 Specifically, the 4 See note 4 above [sic]. U.S.C. 78f(b). 6 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(5). 7 15 U.S.C. 78f(b). Exchange believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Section 6(b)(5) 8 requirements that the rules of an exchange be 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, 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. Additionally, the Exchange believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Section 6(b)(5) 9 requirement that the rules of an exchange not be designed to permit unfair discrimination between customers, issuers, brokers, or dealers. In particular, the proposed rule change will allow investors to more easily use IVV options. Moreover, the proposed rule change would allow investors to better trade and hedge positions in IVV options where the strike price is greater than $200, and ensure that IVV options investors are not at a disadvantage simply because of the strike price. The Exchange also believes the proposed rule change is consistent with Section 6(b)(1) of the Act, which provides that the Exchange be organized and have the capacity to be able to carry out the purposes of the Act and the rules and regulations thereunder, and the rules of the Exchange. The rule change proposal allows the Exchange to respond to customer demand to allow IVV options to trade in $1 intervals above a $200 strike price. The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule would create additional capacity issues or affect market functionality. As noted above, ETF options trade in wider $5 intervals above a $200 strike price, whereas options at or below a $200 strike price trade in $1 intervals. This creates a situation where contracts on the same option class effectively may not be able to execute certain strategies such as, for example, rolling to a higher strike price, simply because of the arbitrary $200 strike price above which options intervals increase by $5. This proposal remedies the situation by establishing an exception to the current ETF interval regime for IVV options to allow such options to trade in $1 or greater intervals at all strike prices. The Exchange believes that the proposed rule change, like other strike price programs currently offered by the 5 15 VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:43 Aug 01, 2017 8 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(5). 9 Id. Jkt 241001 PO 00000 Frm 00123 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Exchange, will benefit investors by giving them increased flexibility to more closely tailor their investment and hedging decisions. Moreover, the proposed rule change is consistent with a prior rule change on NASDAQ PHLX LLC.10 With regard to the impact of this proposal on system capacity, the Exchange believes it and OPRA have the necessary systems capacity to handle any potential additional traffic associated with this proposed rule change. The Exchange believes that its members will not have a capacity issue as a result of this proposal. In addition, the interval setting regime the Exchange proposes to apply to IVV options is currently applied to options on SPY,11 which is an ETF that is identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF. B. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement on Burden on Competition The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose any burden on competition not necessary or appropriate in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. Rather, the Exchange believes that the proposed rule change will result in additional investment options and opportunities to achieve the investment and trading objectives of market participants seeking efficient trading and hedging vehicles, to the benefit of investors, market participants, and the marketplace in general. Specifically, the Exchange believes that IVV options investors and traders will significantly benefit from the availability of finer strike price intervals above a $200 price point. In addition, the interval setting regime the Exchange proposes to apply to IVV options is currently applied to options on SPY,12 which is an ETF that is identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF. Thus, applying the same strike setting regime to SPY and IVV options will help level the playing field for options on similar, competing ETFs. C. Self-Regulatory Organization’s Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change Received From Members, Participants, or Others No written comments were either solicited or received. 10 See Securities and Exchange Act Release 34– 72664 (July 24, 2014), 79 FR 44231 (July 30, 2014) (Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change, as Modified by Amendment No. 1, Relating to SPY and DIA Options) (SR–Phlx–2014–046). 11 See note 4 above [sic]. 12 See note 4 above [sic]. E:\FR\FM\02AUN1.SGM 02AUN1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 147 / Wednesday, August 2, 2017 / Notices III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action The Exchange has designated this rule filing as non-controversial under Section 19(b)(3)(A) 13 of the Act and Rule 19b–4(f)(6) 14 thereunder. Because the proposed rule change does not: (i) Significantly affect the protection of investors or the public interest; (ii) impose any significant burden on competition; and (iii) become operative for 30 days from the date on which it was filed, or such shorter time as the Commission may designate if consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest, it has become effective pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act and Rule 19b–4(f)(6) thereunder.15 A proposed rule change filed under Rule 19b–4(f)(6) 16 normally does not become operative prior to 30 days after the date of the filing. However, pursuant to Rule 19b–4(f)(6)(iii),17 the Commission may designate a shorter time if such action is consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest. The Exchange has asked the Commission to waive the 30-day operative delay because this proposal permits listing IVV options in a manner permitted by the Chicago Board Options Exchange, Incorporated,18 and will provide investors with an alternative venue for trading IVV options. The Commission believes that waiver of the operative delay is consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest. Therefore, the Commission hereby waives the operative delay and designates the proposed rule change operative upon filing.19 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. If the 13 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A). CFR 240.19b–4(f)(6). 15 17 CFR 240.19b–4(f)(6). In addition, Rule 19b– 4(f)(6) requires a self-regulatory organization to give the Commission written notice of its intent to file the proposed rule change at least five business days prior to the date of filing of the proposed rule change, or such shorter time as designated by the Commission. The Exchange has satisfied this requirement. 16 17 CFR 240.19b–4(f)(6). 17 17 CFR 240.19b–4(f)(6)(iii). 18 See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 80913 (June 13, 2017), 82 FR 27907 (June 19, 2017) (SR– CBOE–2017–048). 19 For purposes only of waiving the 30-day operative delay, the Commission has also considered the proposed rule’s impact on efficiency, competition, and capital formation. See 15 U.S.C. 78c(f). sradovich on DSKBCFCHB2PROD with NOTICES 14 17 VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:43 Aug 01, 2017 Jkt 241001 Commission takes such action, the Commission shall institute proceedings under Section 19(b)(2)(B) 20 of the Act to determine whether the proposed rule change should be approved or disapproved. IV. Solicitation of Comments 36049 2017–034, and should be submitted on or before August 23, 2017. For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, pursuant to delegated authority.21 Eduardo A. Aleman, Assistant Secretary. 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: [FR Doc. 2017–16271 Filed 8–1–17; 8:45 am] Electronic Comments [Release No. 34–81248; File Nos. SR–DTC– 2017–013; SR–NSCC–2017–012; SR–FICC– 2017–016] • 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– BX–2017–034 on the subject line. Paper Comments • Send paper comments in triplicate to Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549–1090. All submissions should refer to File Number SR–BX–2017–034. 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 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–BX– BILLING CODE 8011–01–P SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION Self-Regulatory Organizations; The Depository Trust Company; National Securities Clearing Corporation; Fixed Income Clearing Corporation; Notice of Filings of Proposed Rule Changes To Adopt the Clearing Agency Risk Management Framework July 28, 2017. 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 July 14, 2017, The Depository Trust Company (‘‘DTC’’), National Securities Clearing Corporation (‘‘NSCC’’), and Fixed Income Clearing Corporation (‘‘FICC,’’ and together with DTC and NSCC, the ‘‘Clearing Agencies’’), filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘‘Commission’’) the proposed rule changes as described in Items I, II and III below, which Items have been prepared primarily by the Clearing Agencies. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule changes from interested persons. I. Clearing Agencies’ Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Changes The proposed rule changes would adopt the Clearing Agency Risk Management Framework (‘‘Framework’’) of the Clearing Agencies, described below. The Framework would apply to both of FICC’s divisions, the Government Securities Division (‘‘GSD’’) and the Mortgage-Backed Securities Division (‘‘MBSD’’). The Framework would be maintained by the Clearing Agencies to support their compliance with Rules 17Ad–22(e)(1), 21 17 CFR 200.30–3(a)(12). U.S.C. 78s(b)(1). 2 17 CFR 240.19b–4. 1 15 20 15 PO 00000 U.S.C. 78s(b)(2)(B). Frm 00124 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\02AUN1.SGM 02AUN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 147 (Wednesday, August 2, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 36046-36049]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-16271]


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SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

[Release No. 34-81251; File No. SR-BX-2017-034]


Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ BX, Inc.; Notice of Filing 
and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend BX Rules 
at Chapter IV, Section 6

July 28, 2017.
    Pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 
(the ``Act''),\1\ and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,\2\ notice is hereby given 
that on July 27, 2017, NASDAQ BX, Inc. (``BX'' or ``Exchange'') filed 
with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the ``Commission'') the 
proposed rule change as described in Items I and II below, which Items 
have been prepared by the Exchange. 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.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of the 
Substance of the Proposed Rule Change

    The Exchange proposes to amend BX Rules at Chapter IV, Section 6, 
entitled ``Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading.''
    The text of the proposed rule change is set forth below. Proposed 
new language is italicized; deleted text is in brackets.
* * * * *

[[Page 36047]]

Rules of NASDAQ BX

* * * * *

Options Rules

* * * * *

Chapter IV Securities Traded on BX Options

* * * * *

Sec. 6 Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading

    (a)-(g) No change.

Supplementary Material to Section 6

    .01
    (a) and (b) No change.
    (c) Notwithstanding any other provision regarding the interval of 
strike prices of series of options on Exchange-Traded Fund Shares in 
this rule, the interval of strike prices on SPDR[supreg] S&P 
500[supreg] ETF (``SPY''), iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (``IVV''), and the 
SPDR[supreg] Dow Jones[supreg] Industrial Average ETF (``DIA'') options 
will be $1 or greater.
    (d)-(f) No change.
    .02-.09 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 Exchange 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 Exchange 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 Exchange proposes to amend NOM [sic] Rules at Chapter IV, 
Section 6, entitled ``Series of Options Contracts Open for Trading'' by 
modifying the strike setting regime for the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF 
(``IVV'') options. Specifically, the Exchange proposes to modify the 
interval setting regime for IVV options to allow $1 strike price 
intervals above $200.
    The Exchange believes that the proposed rule change would make IVV 
options easier for investors and traders to use and more tailored to 
their investment needs. Additionally, the interval setting regime the 
Exchange proposes to apply to IVV options is currently applied to 
options on units of the Standard & Poor's Depository Receipts Trust 
(``SPY''),\3\ which is an exchange-traded fund (``ETF'') that is 
identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ See Supplementary Material .01(c) to Chapter IV, Section 6. 
See also Securities Exchange Act Release No. 80913 (June 13, 2017), 
82 FR 27907 (June 19, 2017) (SR-CBOE-2017-048) (Notice of Filing and 
Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change Related to Rule 
5.5).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The SPY and IVV ETFs are identical in all material respects. The 
SPY and IVV ETFs are designed to roughly track the performance of the 
S&P 500 Index with the price of SPY and IVV designed to roughly 
approximate 1/10th of the price of the S&P 500 Index. Accordingly, SPY 
and IVV strike prices--having a multiplier of $100--reflect a value 
roughly equal to 1/10th of the value of the S&P 500 Index. For example, 
if the S&P 500 Index is at 1972.56, SPY and IVV options might have a 
value of approximately 197.26 with a notional value of $19,726. In 
general, SPY and IVV options provide retail investors and traders with 
the benefit of trading the broad market in a manageably sized contract. 
As options with an ETP underlying, SPY and IVV options are listed in 
the same manner as equity options under the Rules.
    However, pursuant to current Supplementary Material .01 to Chapter 
IV, Section 6, the interval between strike prices in series of options 
on ETPs, including IVV options will be $1 or greater where the strike 
price is $200 or less and $5.00 or greater where the strike price is 
greater than $200. In addition, pursuant to Supplementary Material 
.07(e) to Chapter IV, Section 6,

    The interval between strike prices on Short Term Option Series 
may be (i) $0.50 or greater where the strike price is less than 
$100, and $1 or greater where the strike price is between $100 and 
$150 for all classes that participate in the Short Term Options 
Series Program; (ii) $0.50 for classes that trade in one dollar 
increments in Related non-Short Term Options and that participate in 
the Short Term Option Series Program; or (iii) $2.50 or greater 
where the strike price is above $150. Related non-Short Term Option 
series shall be opened during the month prior to expiration of such 
Related non-Short Term Option series in the same manner as permitted 
in Supplementary Material to Section 6 at .07 and in the same strike 
price intervals that are permitted in Supplementary Material to 
Section 6 at .07.

    The Exchange's proposal seeks to narrow the strike price intervals 
to $1 for IVV options above $200, in effect matching the strike setting 
regime for strike intervals in IVV options below $200 and matching the 
strike setting regime applied to SPY options. Currently, the S&P 500 
Index is above 2000. The S&P 500 Index is widely regarded as the best 
single gauge of large cap U.S. equities and is widely quoted as an 
indicator of stock prices and investor confidence in the securities 
market. As a result, individual investors often use S&P 500 Index-
related products to diversify their portfolios and benefit from market 
trends. Accordingly, the Exchange believes that offering a wide range 
of S&P 500 Index-based options affords traders and investors important 
hedging and trading opportunities. The Exchange believes that not 
having the proposed $1 strike price intervals above $200 in IVV 
significantly constricts investors' hedging and trading possibilities.
    The Exchange proposes to amend Supplementary Material .01(c) of 
Chapter IV, Section 6 to allow IVV options to trade in $1 increments 
above a strike price of $200. Specifically, the Exchange proposes to 
amend Supplementary Material .01(c) of Chapter IV, Section 6 to state 
that notwithstanding other provisions limiting the ability of the 
Exchange to list $1 increment strike prices on equity and ETF options 
above $200, the interval between strike prices of series of options on 
Units of IVV will be $1 or greater. The Exchange believes that by 
having smaller strike intervals in IVV, investors would have more 
efficient hedging and trading opportunities due to the lower $1 
interval ascension. The proposed $1 intervals, particularly above the 
$200 strike price, will result in having at-the-money series based upon 
the underlying IVV moving less than 1%.
    The Exchange believes that the proposed strike setting regime is in 
line with the slower movements of broad-based indices. Furthermore, the 
proposed $1 intervals would allow option trading strategies (such as, 
for example, risk reduction/hedging strategies using IVV weekly 
options), to remain viable. Considering the fact that $1 intervals 
already exist below the $200 price point and that IVV is above the $200 
level, the Exchange believes that continuing to maintain the artificial 
$200 level (above which intervals increase by $5), would have a 
negative effect on investing, trading and hedging opportunities, and 
volume.
    The Exchange believes that the investing, trading, and hedging 
opportunities available with IVV options far outweighs any potential 
negative impact of allowing IVV options to trade in more finely 
tailored intervals above the $200 price point. The proposed strike 
setting regime would

[[Page 36048]]

permit strikes to be set to more closely reflect values in the 
underlying S&P 500 Index and allow investors and traders to roll open 
positions from a lower strike to a higher strike in conjunction with 
the price movement of the underlying.
    Pursuant to Chapter IV, Section 6, where the next higher available 
series would be $5 away above a $200 strike price, the ability to roll 
such positions is effectively negated. Accordingly, to move a position 
from a $200 strike to a $205 strike pursuant to the current rule, an 
investor would need for the underlying product to move 2.5%, and would 
not be able to execute a roll up until such a large movement occurred. 
With the proposed rule change, however, the investor would be in a 
significantly safer position of being able to roll his open options 
position from a $200 to a $201 strike price, which is only a 0.5% move 
for the underlying.
    The proposed rule change will allow the Exchange to better respond 
to customer demand for IVV strike prices more precisely aligned with 
current S&P 500 Index values. The Exchange believes that the proposed 
rule change, like the other strike price programs currently offered by 
the Exchange, will benefit investors by providing investors the 
flexibility to more closely tailor their investment and hedging 
decisions using IVV options. By allowing series of IVV options to be 
listed in $1 intervals between strike prices over $200, the proposal 
will moderately augment the potential total number of options series 
available on the Exchange. However, the Exchange believes it and the 
Options Price Reporting Authority (``OPRA'') have the necessary systems 
capacity to handle any potential additional traffic associated with 
this proposed rule change. The Exchange also believes that Participants 
will not have a capacity issue due to the proposed rule change.
    In addition, the Exchange represents that it does not believe that 
this expansion will cause fragmentation of liquidity. In addition, the 
interval setting regime the Exchange proposes to apply to IVV options 
is currently applied to options on SPY,\4\ which is an ETF that is 
identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF.
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    \4\ See note 4 above [sic].
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2. Statutory Basis
    The Exchange believes that its proposal is consistent with Section 
6(b) of the Act,\5\ in general, and furthers the objectives of Section 
6(b)(5) of the Act,\6\ in particular.\7\ Specifically, the Exchange 
believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Section 
6(b)(5) \8\ requirements that the rules of an exchange be 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, 
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. Additionally, the Exchange 
believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Section 
6(b)(5) \9\ requirement that the rules of an exchange not be designed 
to permit unfair discrimination between customers, issuers, brokers, or 
dealers.
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    \5\ 15 U.S.C. 78f(b).
    \6\ 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(5).
    \7\ 15 U.S.C. 78f(b).
    \8\ 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(5).
    \9\ Id.
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    In particular, the proposed rule change will allow investors to 
more easily use IVV options. Moreover, the proposed rule change would 
allow investors to better trade and hedge positions in IVV options 
where the strike price is greater than $200, and ensure that IVV 
options investors are not at a disadvantage simply because of the 
strike price.
    The Exchange also believes the proposed rule change is consistent 
with Section 6(b)(1) of the Act, which provides that the Exchange be 
organized and have the capacity to be able to carry out the purposes of 
the Act and the rules and regulations thereunder, and the rules of the 
Exchange. The rule change proposal allows the Exchange to respond to 
customer demand to allow IVV options to trade in $1 intervals above a 
$200 strike price. The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule 
would create additional capacity issues or affect market functionality.
    As noted above, ETF options trade in wider $5 intervals above a 
$200 strike price, whereas options at or below a $200 strike price 
trade in $1 intervals. This creates a situation where contracts on the 
same option class effectively may not be able to execute certain 
strategies such as, for example, rolling to a higher strike price, 
simply because of the arbitrary $200 strike price above which options 
intervals increase by $5. This proposal remedies the situation by 
establishing an exception to the current ETF interval regime for IVV 
options to allow such options to trade in $1 or greater intervals at 
all strike prices.
    The Exchange believes that the proposed rule change, like other 
strike price programs currently offered by the Exchange, will benefit 
investors by giving them increased flexibility to more closely tailor 
their investment and hedging decisions. Moreover, the proposed rule 
change is consistent with a prior rule change on NASDAQ PHLX LLC.\10\
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    \10\ See Securities and Exchange Act Release 34-72664 (July 24, 
2014), 79 FR 44231 (July 30, 2014) (Notice of Filing of Proposed 
Rule Change, as Modified by Amendment No. 1, Relating to SPY and DIA 
Options) (SR-Phlx-2014-046).
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    With regard to the impact of this proposal on system capacity, the 
Exchange believes it and OPRA have the necessary systems capacity to 
handle any potential additional traffic associated with this proposed 
rule change. The Exchange believes that its members will not have a 
capacity issue as a result of this proposal.
    In addition, the interval setting regime the Exchange proposes to 
apply to IVV options is currently applied to options on SPY,\11\ which 
is an ETF that is identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \11\ See note 4 above [sic].
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B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition

    The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule change will 
impose any burden on competition not necessary or appropriate in 
furtherance of the purposes of the Act. Rather, the Exchange believes 
that the proposed rule change will result in additional investment 
options and opportunities to achieve the investment and trading 
objectives of market participants seeking efficient trading and hedging 
vehicles, to the benefit of investors, market participants, and the 
marketplace in general. Specifically, the Exchange believes that IVV 
options investors and traders will significantly benefit from the 
availability of finer strike price intervals above a $200 price point. 
In addition, the interval setting regime the Exchange proposes to apply 
to IVV options is currently applied to options on SPY,\12\ which is an 
ETF that is identical in all material respects to the IVV ETF. Thus, 
applying the same strike setting regime to SPY and IVV options will 
help level the playing field for options on similar, competing ETFs.
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    \12\ See note 4 above [sic].
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C. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Comments on the Proposed 
Rule Change Received From Members, Participants, or Others

    No written comments were either solicited or received.

[[Page 36049]]

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

    The Exchange has designated this rule filing as non-controversial 
under Section 19(b)(3)(A) \13\ of the Act and Rule 19b-4(f)(6) \14\ 
thereunder. Because the proposed rule change does not: (i) 
Significantly affect the protection of investors or the public 
interest; (ii) impose any significant burden on competition; and (iii) 
become operative for 30 days from the date on which it was filed, or 
such shorter time as the Commission may designate if consistent with 
the protection of investors and the public interest, it has become 
effective pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act and Rule 19b-
4(f)(6) thereunder.\15\
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    \13\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A).
    \14\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6).
    \15\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6). In addition, Rule 19b-4(f)(6) 
requires a self-regulatory organization to give the Commission 
written notice of its intent to file the proposed rule change at 
least five business days prior to the date of filing of the proposed 
rule change, or such shorter time as designated by the Commission. 
The Exchange has satisfied this requirement.
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    A proposed rule change filed under Rule 19b-4(f)(6) \16\ normally 
does not become operative prior to 30 days after the date of the 
filing. However, pursuant to Rule 19b-4(f)(6)(iii),\17\ the Commission 
may designate a shorter time if such action is consistent with the 
protection of investors and the public interest. The Exchange has asked 
the Commission to waive the 30-day operative delay because this 
proposal permits listing IVV options in a manner permitted by the 
Chicago Board Options Exchange, Incorporated,\18\ and will provide 
investors with an alternative venue for trading IVV options. The 
Commission believes that waiver of the operative delay is consistent 
with the protection of investors and the public interest. Therefore, 
the Commission hereby waives the operative delay and designates the 
proposed rule change operative upon filing.\19\
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    \16\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6).
    \17\ 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6)(iii).
    \18\ See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 80913 (June 13, 
2017), 82 FR 27907 (June 19, 2017) (SR-CBOE-2017-048).
    \19\ For purposes only of waiving the 30-day operative delay, 
the Commission has also considered the proposed rule's impact on 
efficiency, competition, and capital formation. See 15 U.S.C. 
78c(f).
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    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. If the Commission 
takes such action, the Commission shall institute proceedings under 
Section 19(b)(2)(B) \20\ of the Act to determine whether the proposed 
rule change should be approved or disapproved.
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    \20\ 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(2)(B).
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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-BX-2017-034 on the subject line.

Paper Comments

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

All submissions should refer to File Number SR-BX-2017-034. 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 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-BX-2017-034, and should be 
submitted on or before August 23, 2017.

    For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, 
pursuant to delegated authority.\21\
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    \21\ 17 CFR 200.30-3(a)(12).
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Eduardo A. Aleman,
Assistant Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2017-16271 Filed 8-1-17; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8011-01-P