WASHINGTON - The American Bankers Association is warning that the use of Cusip identification numbers as part of the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board's EMMA system violates the ABA's intellectual property and contractual rights and that EMMA should not move forward until these legal hurdles are resolved.

The ABA's warnings come in a two-page comment letter filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission late last week, in which the banking group demands that the MSRB pay ABA licensing fees for the use of Cusips and that the board take steps to ensure the security of the numbers by blocking access to EMMA, or Electronic Municipal Market Access, unless users have a password.

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