Past version: effective from Feb 11 2011 - Feb 3 2013.
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(a) Authority for Initiating a Trading and Quotation Halt
In circumstances in which it is necessary to protect investors and the public interest, FINRA may direct members, pursuant to the procedures set forth in paragraph (b), to halt trading and quotations in OTC Equity Securities (as such term is defined in Rule 6420
(1) the OTC Equity Security or the security underlying an American Depository Receipt ("ADR") that is an OTC Equity Security ("OTC ADR") is listed on or registered with a foreign securities exchange or market, and the foreign securities exchange, market, or regulatory authority overseeing such issuer, exchange, or market, halts trading in such security for regulatory reasons because of public interest concerns ("Foreign Regulatory Halt"); provided, however, that FINRA will not impose a trading and quotation halt if the Foreign Regulatory Halt was imposed solely for material news, a regulatory filing deficiency, or operational reasons;
(2) the OTC Equity Security or the security underlying an OTC ADR is a derivative or component of a security listed on or registered with a national securities exchange or foreign securities exchange or market ("listed security") and the national securities exchange, or foreign securities exchange or market imposes a trading halt in the listed security; or
(3) FINRA determines that an extraordinary event has occurred or is ongoing that has had a material effect on the market for the OTC Equity Security or has caused or has the potential to cause major disruption to the marketplace and/or significant uncertainty in the settlement and clearance process.
(b) Procedure for Initiating a Trading and Quotation Halt
(1) When a halt is initiated under paragraph (a)(1) of this Rule, upon receipt of information from a foreign securities exchange or market on which the OTC Equity Security or the security underlying the OTC ADR is listed or registered, or from a regulatory authority overseeing such issuer, exchange, or market, FINRA will promptly evaluate the information and determine whether a trading and quotation halt in the OTC Equity Security is appropriate.
(2) Should FINRA determine that a basis exists under this Rule for initiating a trading and quotation halt, the commencement of the trading and quotation halt will be effective simultaneous with the issuance of appropriate public notice.
(3) Trading and quotations in the OTC market may resume when FINRA determines that the basis for the halt no longer exists, or when ten business days have elapsed from the date FINRA initiated the trading and quotation halt in the security, whichever occurs first. FINRA shall disseminate appropriate public notice that the trading and quotation halt is no longer in effect.
(c) Violation of OTC Trading and Quotation Halt Rule
If a security is subject to a trading and quotation halt initiated pursuant to this Rule, it shall be deemed conduct inconsistent with just and equitable principles of trade and a violation of Rule 2010
for a member:
(1) to effect, directly or indirectly, a trade in such security; or
(2) to publish a quotation, a priced bid and/or offer, an unpriced indication of interest (including "bid wanted" and "offer wanted" indications), or a bid or offer accompanied by a modifier to reflect unsolicited customer interest, in any quotation medium. For purposes of this Rule, "quotation medium" shall mean any: system of general circulation to brokers or dealers that regularly disseminates quotations of identified brokers or dealers; or publication, alternative trading system or other device that is used by brokers or dealers to disseminate quotations to others.
• • • Supplementary Material: --------------
.01 FINRA may impose a trading and quotation halt in an OTC Equity Security pursuant to Rule 6440(a)(3) where FINRA determines, in its discretion, based on the facts and circumstances of the particular event, that halting trading in the security is the appropriate mechanism to protect investors and ensure a fair and orderly marketplace. As a general matter, FINRA does not favor imposing a trading and quotation halt in an OTC Equity Security and will exercise this authority in very limited circumstances.
.02 In determining whether to impose a trading halt under Rule 6440(a)(3), FINRA will consider several factors in making its determination, including but not limited to: (1) the material nature of the event; (2) the material facts surrounding the event are undisputed and not in conflict; (3) the event has caused widespread confusion in the trading of the security; (4) there has been a material negative effect on the market for the subject security; (5) the potential exists for a major disruption to the marketplace; (6) there is significant uncertainty in the settlement and clearance process for the security; and/or (7) such other factors as FINRA deems relevant in making its determination. FINRA may review all or some of these factors as it determines appropriate.