Roundtable on Mark-to-Market Accounting
On October 29, 2008 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Securities and Exchange Commission will hold a roundtable to discuss mark-to-market accounting and the recent period of market turmoil. The roundtable will be organized as two panels. The panels will include investors, issuers, auditors, and other parties with experience in mark-to-market accounting. Additionally, representatives from the Financial Accounting Standards Board, the International Accounting Standards Board and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board will be present as observers. The roundtable will be held in the auditorium of SEC headquarters at 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC. The roundtable will be open to the public with seating on a first-come, first-served basis. The roundtable discussions also will be available via Webcast on the SEC's Web site at http://www.sec.gov. The roundtable agenda and other materials related to the roundtable, including a list of participants and moderators, will be accessible at http:// www.sec.gov/spotlight/ fairvalue.htm. The Commission welcomes feedback regarding any of the topics to be addressed at the roundtable.
Resubmission of Comment Letters
A small number of public comments submitted by commenters in connection with certain proposed Commission rules, proposed rule changes by self-regulatory organizations, and other matters were not received by the Commission through the Federal eRulemaking Portal and through the Commission's Web site due to software issues. A list of those matters and the number of comment letters not received is attached as Appendix A. The Commission is providing an opportunity for commenters whose comments were not received to resubmit their comments with respect to the matters identified in Appendix A.
Disclosure of Short Sales and Short Positions by Institutional Investment Managers
The Commission is adopting an interim final temporary rule requiring certain institutional investment managers to file information on Form SH concerning their short sales and positions of section 13(f) securities, other than options. The new rule extends the reporting requirements established by our Emergency Orders dated September 18, 2008, September 21, 2008 and October 2, 2008, with some modifications. The extension will be effective until August 1, 2009. Consistent with the Orders, the rule requires an institutional investment manager that exercises investment discretion with respect to accounts holding section 13(f) securities having an aggregate fair market value of at least $100 million to file Form SH with the Commission following a calendar week in which it effected a short sale in a section 13(f) security, with some exceptions.
Amendments to Regulation SHO
The Securities and Exchange Commission (``Commission'') is adopting an interim final temporary rule under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (``Exchange Act'') to address abusive ``naked'' short selling in all equity securities by requiring that participants of a clearing agency registered with the Commission deliver securities by settlement date, or if the participants have not delivered shares by settlement date, immediately purchase or borrow securities to close out the fail to deliver position by no later than the beginning of regular trading hours on the settlement day following the day the participant incurred the fail to deliver position. Failure to comply with the close-out requirement of the temporary rule is a violation of the temporary rule. In addition, a participant that does not comply with this close-out requirement, and any broker-dealer from which it receives trades for clearance and settlement, will not be able to short sell the security either for itself or for the account of another, unless it has previously arranged to borrow or borrowed the security, until the fail to deliver position is closed out.
Amendments to Regulation SHO
The Securities and Exchange Commission (``Commission'') is adopting amendments to Regulation SHO under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (``Exchange Act''). The amendments are intended to further reduce the number of persistent fails to deliver in certain equity securities by eliminating the options market maker exception to the close-out requirement of Regulation SHO. As a result of the amendments, fails to deliver in threshold securities that result from hedging activities by options market makers will no longer be excepted from Regulation SHO's close-out requirement. The Commission is also providing guidance regarding bona fide market making activities for purposes of the market maker exception to Regulation SHO's locate requirement.
``Naked'' Short Selling Antifraud Rule
The Securities and Exchange Commission (``Commission'') is adopting an antifraud rule under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (``Exchange Act'') to address fails to deliver securities that have been associated with ``naked'' short selling. The rule will further evidence the liability of short sellers, including broker-dealers acting for their own accounts, who deceive specified persons about their intention or ability to deliver securities in time for settlement (including persons that deceive their broker-dealer about their locate source or ownership of shares) and that fail to deliver securities by settlement date.
Indexed Annuities and Certain Other Insurance Contracts
The Securities and Exchange Commission is reopening the period for public comment on new rules that it originally proposed in Securities Act Release No. 8933 (June 25, 2008) [73 FR 37752 (July 1, 2008)]. The Commission proposed a rule that would, if adopted, define the terms ``annuity contract'' and ``optional annuity contract'' under the Securities Act of 1933. The proposed rule is intended to clarify the status under the federal securities laws of indexed annuities. The Commission also proposed to exempt insurance companies from filing reports under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 with respect to indexed annuities and other securities that are registered under the Securities Act, provided that the securities are regulated under state insurance law, the issuing insurance company and its financial condition are subject to supervision and examination by a state insurance regulator, and the securities are not publicly traded.