Securities

Montréal – At the request of the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF), the Bureau de décision et de révision en valeurs mobilières (BDRVM) has approved the settlement agreement reached between the AMF and OptionsXpress, Inc., pursuant to section 94 of An Act respecting the Autorité des marchés financiers.

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, OptionsXpress offers on-line securities trading services. The services have been available to investors in Canada since 2001 although the company was not authorized to provide such services by any provincial securities regulators.

Similarly, this agreement has been reached between OptionsXpress and staff of the securities regulators in Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Prince Edward Island.

Under the agreement, OptionsXpress will pay a total of $550,000 to the ten regulators in the provincial jurisdictions where OptionsXpress traded securities without authorization. Moreover, OptionsXpress has undertaken to join the Investment Dealers Association of Canada (IDA) and to register with the ten regulators by December 31, 2005.

The Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec's financial sector.

Created under An Act respecting the Autorité des marchés financiers, the Bureau de décision et de révision en valeurs mobilières is an administrative tribunal that exercises powers prescribed by the Securities Act.

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Information:

Media only:
Philippe Roy (514) 940-2176
Issuers, dealers, advisers and representatives: (877) 525-0337, dial 9 for English, then choose option 1 for industry
Consumers and investors: (877) 525-0337, dial 9 for English, then choose option 2 for consumers