On September 9, the Securities and Exchange Commission voted to propose amendments to the national market system plan (CAT NMS Plan) governing the Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT).

The proposed amendments would require self-regulatory organizations that are participants in the CAT NMS Plan, such as FINRA and the national securities exchanges (SROs), to file and publish a complete implementation plan for the CAT and quarterly progress reports. Each of the required documents must be approved by the Operating Committee established by the CAT NMS Plan and submitted to the chief executive officer, president or equivalently situated senior officer of each participating self-regulatory organization. In addition, the proposed amendments would include financial accountability provisions that establish target deadlines for four implementation milestones and reduce the amount of fee recovery available to the participating self-regulatory organizations if those target deadlines are missed.

The public comment period will remain open for 45 days following publication of the proposed release in the Federal Register.

In a public statement released in conjunction with the proposed amendments, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton acknowledged that the SROs have not met the CAT NMS Plan deadlines for implementation of the CAT, explained that the proposed amendments are designed to facilitate implementation progress and assured that the protection of sensitive personal information submitted to the CAT would be a priority of the SEC and the SROs.

The SEC press release is available here.

A copy of SEC Chairman Jay Clayton’s statement on the proposed amendments is available here.

The proposed amendments are available here.