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Order Audit Trail System (OATS)
Compliant Time Stamping with DocuClock

Did you know that as of July 1, 1999 NASD has specific requirements (OATS) for accuracy of time stamps on order tickets
  • All trades for NASD must show the complete date and time to the second.
  • The time is set to Eastern Standard Time and must be corrected to the NIST atomic clock. Computer clocks must be set within 3 seconds of the atomic clock.
  • Dealers must keep a log or record of each time a clock receives a time sync from NIST and each time it sends out a correction to the trade clocks, and the trades clocks must indicate if it received this signal before the Market opens.
  • Paper order tickets must be also stamped with the exact time in seconds.
  • FINRA (formerly NASD) audits approximately 2500 of its members every year.

Beagle Software has time synchronization solutions that keep a Windows desktop computer or an entire network synchronized to the atomic clock while maintaining a detailed log of all clock setting activity. DocuClock will...

DocuClock synchronizes your computer to the atomic clock and prints the date and the exact time to the second.

Date/time stamping                                        FEB 01, 2001 AM 9:00:39 

OATS requires that paper trades are stamped with the exact time. DocuClock's included ClockWatch software maintains your Windows PC at NIST atomic clock time, and whenever a time stamp request is made, the DocuClock date/time stamper prints this exact time on your order ticket.

Diagram of the DocuClock solution

time stamping solution, a network view
DocuClock fits the way your office works today

In the diagram, DocuClock is acting as a central time stamping facility in a client/server environment. With our ClockWatch Client/Server software, your server computer services time requests from workstations running ClockWatch Client. ClockWatch Server software keeps the computer it is running on set to the correct time by accessing external timeservers over the Internet or through a directly-dialed connection. The trader's applications use the correct time maintained by ClockWatch software while the DocuClock time stamper provides a printed record of the exact time.

Keeping logs
OATS rules require that logs are kept to show that time settings are made during trading hours. DocuClock keeps detailed logs of every time setting and every time stamp. These logs are kept automatically and are available for review or archival at any time.

Maintaining the correct time
Since DocuClock gets the time from the host computer, that computer must be maintained at the exact time. Beagle Software offers both standalone and networked software editions for maintaining the host computer at standard time. Your computer's clock can also be locked down to prevent unauthorized users from changing the date or time.

Desktop solutions
For standalone computers, Beagle Software offers several software products that synchronize the computer to the atomic clock.  More on ClockWatch desktop solutions...

Networked solutions
For dealers handling electronic transactions in a networked environment, Beagle Software's Client/Server software is a simple yet powerful pair of applications that use the hardware and system software you currently run. The software f
eatures a time synchronization program that keeps the computer it is running on (the server) set to the correct time. It also handles requests for the correct time from the other PCs on the network (the clients). 

The ClockWatch host server's job is to keep the time accurate on the host and to process requests and send appropriate responses. The ClockWatch client's job is to send requests to the ClockWatch server to maintain the correct time. All interaction with external time servers is done by the host server. The communication link with the clients must be a network (ethernet) connection.

Beagle Software's systems offer you an easy way to implement OATS compliance to every Windows PC on your LAN.

More on networking the DocuClock time stamper...

More on ClockWatch Client/Server in an OATS compliant environment...

Why use Beagle Software?

As a Beagle Software customer, you can be secure in the knowledge that you are working with a vendor who specializes in installing time synchronization solutions for the securities industry.

For more information or field engineering support contact

Frequently Asked Questions about OATS
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Last reviewed August 18, 2009