OATS Technical Specifications

The OATS Reporting Technical Specifications document covers the requirements and procedures for clock synchronization; system access requirements for supplying OATS files to FINRA; order reporting scenarios that describe, from a business perspective, responsibilities for reporting to OATS; details regarding the required layout of OATS files; procedures for providing corrections to OATS data and for receiving feedback from FINRA; and the procedures for registration, self-administration, and testing and certification. It also contains a data dictionary that describes all of the data elements in OATS files; a list of report formats, including field names, data types, and lists of permissible values; examples of order reports; and a glossary. The OATS Reporting Technical Specifications is not intended to provide information about how to develop an electronic system that reports order information; it is only intended to describe what such a system must deliver to FINRA.

FINRA released a new edition of the OATS Reporting Technical Specifications dated January 20, 2017. This edition of the OATS Reporting Technical Specifications contains the following changes:

  • As per FINRA Rule 4590, all computer system clocks and mechanical time stamping devices must be synchronized to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) atomic clock as follows:
    • Within 50 milliseconds for systems that capture time in milliseconds.
    • Within one second for systems that do not capture time in milliseconds.
  • New Destination Code for the MIAX PEARL Exchange:
    • OS- MIAX PEARL Exchange
  • Modifications related to Processing Sequence Number:
    The Processing Sequence Number indicates the Processing Sequence Number assigned to the order event by the ATS's matching engine. The following fields may be used to provide the Processing Sequence Number of the applicable event. Please note that reports representing multiple events must be populated with a processing sequence number for each event.  This change applies only to ATSs receiving orders in NMS stocks.
    • Processing Sequence Number- Receipt or Origination must be populated on all New Order, Cancel/Replace, Combined Order/Route, and Combined Order/Execution Reports.
    • Processing Sequence Number- Route must be populated on all Route and Combined Order/Route Reports.
    • Processing Sequence Number- Execution must be populated on all Execution and Combined Order/Execution Reports.
    • Processing Sequence Number- Desk must be populated on all Desk reports and New Order type reports representing Desk information.
    • Processing Sequence Number- Cancel must be populated on all Cancel reports and New Order type reports representing Cancel information.
    • Processing Sequence Number- Display Modification must be populated on all Order Display Modification Reports

The changes described in this edition are scheduled to be available for testing on March 27, 2017 in the OATS Certificate Test Environment and on April 24, 2017 in the OATS Production Environment

View OATS Reporting Technical Specifications (1/20/2017 edition) (PDF 2.25 MB)

View our archive of past specifications.

If you are having problems accessing these files, please contact FINRA Business and Technology Support Services at 1-800-321-6273.