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August 31, 1998

At Deadline - ECN Fees

By John A. Byrne

The Security Traders Association has responded to the resentment expressed by market makers over the bills electronic communications networks (ECNs) send them each time a desk trades a stock on an ECN that is alone at the inside price. On August 28, the STA filed a petition with the Securities and Exchange Commission that would prohibit an ECN from charging the fees.

The STA had previously stated that failure by a trading desk to pay the fees to an ECN could result in the trading desk being denied access to the ECN. Moreover, without access to an ECN which is solely at the inside price, an executing broker dealer could be considered in violation of its best-execution obligations.

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