April 24, 2013
Chairperson White and Commissioners
The SEC has an obligation under the 75' Act amendments
to review proposals for uncessary anti-competitive impacts on investors.
This proposal would fail such a review on several grounds.
First, customer Last sale and bid/offer quotation information are provided by broker/dealers pursuant to a government mandate and combined under the NMS mandate. Historically such information has not been protected under copywrite.
Second, investors,who do not sign a subscriber agreement with the exchanges, are subjected to a delayed access to realtime sale and quotation information. The current information delay is 15 to 20 minutes the same as about 50 years ago.
Even assuming that the SRO cartel is legimate, it is clearly no longer necessary for purposes of the Act to
restrict broker redistribution to customers "Read only" realtime information, derived in large part from those very customers, with out individual subscriber agreements that assert SRO ownership of the information.
No one should be forced to lie, especially to themselves.
Third, market data fees should probably be going down rather than up at some inflation rate as suggested by the Release. Perhaps the market data distribution process should be left to competition and listing fees raised to cover the last sale and quotations services provided by exchanges to issuers under their listing agreements.
After all, in 1970, before fixed minimum commissions began to be eliminated, the commission on a 1000 share trade was between $250 and $350. today it is about $10.
Moreover, it appears that realtime data is more readily available from the internet and TV for some customers than from their own Broker-dealers.
Former SEC Chief Economist (1969-1976) and NASD Chief Economist (1983-1995)