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August 31, 1998

OptiMark Faces Stiff Resistance From Big Board Over ITS

By Staff reports

The New York Stock Exchange is upping the ante in its effort to foil Jersey City-based OptiMark Technologies' plan to go live this fall with its OptiMark Trading System.

The Big Board claims parts of the OptiMark plan contravene core principals of the National Market System (NMS).

At issue are amendments to the Intermarket Trading System (ITS), proposed in July by the Securities and Exchange Commission, that would allow OptiMark to operate as a facility of the Pacific Exchange (PCX).

In a comment letter, the Big Board said several concerns must still be resolved.

The NYSE questions how the PCX and OptiMark platform will "reasonably probe" the PCX for unmatched orders before submitting the orders to the ITS.

In addition, the Big Board asks if a ceiling should be placed over PCX and OptiMark-generated orders, given that the planned platform, if unchecked, could become a system for routing orders to the Big Board and other exchanges.