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SEC Approves Repeal of NYSE Rule 500
Washington, DC, November 6, 2003 - The Institute supports the adoption of an NYSE rule change that will help to create a more level playing field among markets competing to trade NYSE-listed securities.
In September 2003, NYSE proposed to repeal Rule 500, which would remove previous requirements that an issuer seeking to voluntarily delist a security from the NYSE obtain audit committee approval, provide prior written notice to the issuer’s 35 largest record holders, and publish a press release informing shareholders generally of the proposed delisting. The proposal approved by the SEC requires an issuer to furnish NYSE with a certified board resolution evidencing board approval of the delisting only.
In an October 2003 comment letter, the Institute expressed support for the proposal, noting that, in addition to creating a more level playing field, the proposed changes would bring NYSE's requirements in line with the requirements of other exchanges while continuing to provide adequate investor protection if an issuer chooses to delist its shares from the Exchange.
In a related statement, the Institute urged the NYSE and other exchanges to maintain strong listing standards and not engage in a "race to the bottom" in an attempt to maintain and/or increase listings on their respective markets. The Institute encouraged the SEC to monitor the impact of the repeal of Rule 500 on listing standards across all markets, and urged the boards of companies currently listed on the Exchange that consider delisting under the amended requirements to ensure that this decision is in the best interest of investors.
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