SR-NASD-2002-004

Amendments to the Taping Rule

NASD Regulation, Inc., has filed with the SEC a proposed rule change to amend NASD Rule 3010(b)(2), also known as the "Taping Rule," and NASD IM-8310-2. The proposed amendments to the Taping Rule generally would: (1) permit firms that become subject to the Taping Rule a one time opportunity to adjust their staffing levels to fall below the prescribed threshold levels and thus avoid application of the Rule; (2) revise the criteria by which firms become subject to the Taping Rule by not including certain short-term employees of disciplined firms into the calculations of the Taping Rule threshold levels; (3) expand the compliance deadline from 30 to 60 days for firms subject to the Taping Rule to install taping systems; (4) clarify the staff’s authority to grant exemptions from the Rule pursuant to the Rule 9600 Series only in exceptional cases; and (5) extend the taping requirements from two years to three years to eliminate conflicting time periods in the Taping Rule. In addition, NASD Regulation proposes amendments to NASD IM-8310-2 to permit, upon request, public disclosure of whether a particular firm is subject to the Taping Rule.