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Tim Quast
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April 1, 2000

Big Board's Proposal Gives Buy-Side Voice

By staff Reports

The New York Stock Exchange is considering a proposal that would open the exchange's allocation panel to buy-side firms.

The measure could give buy-side pros a more direct say in the allocation of stocks to specialists. That's because panel members sit on the allocation committee that recommends specialist firms to newly-listed companies.

The Big Board's plan, if enacted, would replace one floor broker member with one buy-side representative, on the nine-person allocation committee. The exchange also plans to add nine buy-side pros to the allocation panel. The panel is charged with creating committees when a new firm lists at the Big Board.

Protecting Franchise

The effort by the Big Board is hardly groundbreaking. But it does demonstrate the exchange's interest in catering to the buyside in the face of heated competition. The Big Board is pulling out the stops to protect its franchise against electronic communications networks and archrival Nasdaq, which are lusting for its order flow.

A final amendment on the Big Board proposal was filed by the exchange with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The allocation committee changes are expected to go into effect within the next few months, pending regulatory approval. A spokesperson for the NYSE did not return a call seeking comment.