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SEC Expects Few Or No Brokers Shut for Y2K Failure By JUDITH BURNS

(This story was originally published late Friday.)

WASHINGTON -- Few if any U.S. brokerage firms will be shut down by the so-called millennium bug, according to a senior Securities and Exchange Commission official.

"We're on the watch for them," Christian Mixter, chief litigation counsel at the SEC's enforcement division, said Friday. "Do I expect many cases? Absolutely not. Do I expect any cases? Maybe."

Year-2000 readiness is under the microscope at the SEC. Under a rule adopted by the Commission earlier this year, broker-dealers and non-bank transfer agents had to inform the agency by Aug. 31 whether their "mission-critical" computer systems are year-2000 compliant.

Firms that weren't ready by August 31 have until Monday, Nov. 15, to whip their systems into shape, or face a court-ordered shutdown by Dec. 1.

Seven small brokerage firms sought the extension to fix their computers, according to SEC spokesman Chris Ullman. Concerns center on systems that use two digits to identify years, which might interpret 2000 as 1900, potentially wreaking havoc on financial transactions.

Mixter said he isn't sure what will happen once the deadline expires on Nov. 15, but is hopeful that no firms will be shut down due to year-2000 computer problems.

"I would be not surprised, and very happy, if the answer were zero," Mixter told a meeting of the American Bar Association here Friday. He stressed that his remarks represent his own views, not those of the SEC, as did other SEC officials who spoke to the same audience.


Y2K Worries Abate For European Investors By SILVIA ASCARELLI and CRAIG KARMIN Staff Reporters of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

After all the hand-wringing, year 2000 may turn out to be not that big a deal for European financial markets.

A growing minority of investors claim they will keep trading until year end rather than calling a halt at the end of November, as they intended just two or three months ago. With firms more confident their computer systems are cured of any year-2000 bugs, "there's a marked change in selected investors indicating they are getting more comfortable with trading later into December," says Scott Field-Marsham, risk manager for portfolio trading at Morgan Stanley Dean Witter in London.

The latest Merrill Lynch/Gallup poll of fund managers found only 14% of continental European fund managers and 18% of United Kingdom fund managers believe Y2K problems are a significant issue in picking stocks, down from 37% and 30%, respectively, in September.


BIS Says Mechanisms In Place To Handle Y2K Liquidity Risk

MELBOURNE -- The risks of the Y2K computer problem causing significant problems to world banking at the turn of the year are small, and mechanisms are in place to ensure there is sufficient liquidity in the system, the general manager of the Bank for International Settlements, Andrew Crockett, said Monday.

"On January 1, I don't expect things to happen that are life threatening to any financial institution," Crockett told reporters ahead of a lecture he is scheduled to give at the University of Melbourne later this afternoon.

"The risks of anything going wrong at the turn of the year are pretty small," he said, adding that the need for households and businesses to take special financial precautions is "more or less zero."

-- drac (greenspanisgod@frb.giov), November 15, 1999


Firms that weren't ready by August 31 have until Monday, Nov. 15, to whip their systems into shape, or face a court-ordered shutdown by Dec. 1.
... so - when will we know ?

-- Dan G (, November 15, 1999.

Forget it Dan.

People meet deadlines. Computers and embedded chips could care less.

-- Tommy Rogers (Been there@Just a, November 15, 1999.

DAN: SIMPLE. They'll tell us AFTER Jan.1/00 (could be 1900 or 2000).

-- profit of doom (, November 15, 1999.

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