News Release

NASD Issues Guidance, Offers Relief to Firms Affected by Katrina

Washington, D.C. — NASD today issued Notice to Members 05-57 to provide guidance to registered firms with offices located in areas impacted by Hurricane Katrina, outlining procedures to follow to allow customers continued access to their accounts and detailing relief from some regulatory requirements while business operations are disrupted. NASD has also posted a special information and communications Web page for securities firms affected by the disaster.

NASD's New Orleans District Office - whose operations cover the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Tennessee - has been closed indefinitely. That office's 47 employees are being transferred to other district offices, where they and their families are being provided with temporary housing. New Orleans' enforcement caseload will be handled by the assigned attorneys from their relocated offices. New Orleans' examinations plan is being revamped to reflect the postponement of exams of firms in the areas impacted by Katrina.

NASD Dispute Resolution will automatically stay, through Sept. 30, all hearings and other due dates for cases assigned to its New Orleans hearing location. Further stays will be liberally granted on a case-by-case basis. In addition, cases affected by Katrina in other hearing locations will be handled on a case-by-case basis, with stays liberally granted. All inquiries should be directed to Rose Schindler or Jill Wile of NASD DR's Boca Raton office at (561) 416-0277.

NASD Chairman Robert R. Glauber announced Friday that NASD will make a contribution of $500,000 to help the Red Cross's relief efforts and will match, dollar for dollar, all NASD employee contributions to the relief effort.

NASD is the leading private-sector provider of financial regulatory services, dedicated to investor protection and market integrity through effective and efficient regulation and complementary compliance and technology-based services.  NASD touches virtually every aspect of the securities business - from registering and educating all industry participants, to examining securities firms, enforcing both NASD rules and the federal securities laws, and administering the largest dispute resolution forum for investors and member firms.  For more information, please visit our Web site at