Message on Short Sales
The SEC using its powers under 12(k)(2) of the Exchange Act has prohibited any person from effecting any short sale, as defined by Rule 200 of Regulation SHO, in the publicly traded securities of the financial institutions specified in the Order ("Included Financial Firm"). The Included Financial Firms are a significantly larger group than those included in the initial July 15, 2008 Emergency Order found at Exchange Act Release 58166 and subsequently amended and extended by subsequent Orders. (See Exchange Act Releases 58190 and 58572).
There are limited exceptions from the prohibition provided for bona fide market makers and block positioners in the securities as well as short sales that occur as a result of automatic exercise or assignment of an equity option held prior to the effectiveness of the Order due to expiration of the option. Option Market Makers are exempted from the prohibition completely until 11:59 PM September 19, 2008 in order to accommodate the expirations of options on September 20, 2008.
The Order is effective as of 12:01 EDT September 19, 2008 and extends to October 2, 2008 unless extended by the Commission. A copy of the Order with the list of Included Financial Firms is attached.