| WASHINGTON, July 21
WASHINGTON, July 21 The U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission on Monday announced it has tapped a
University of Florida professor to serve as the agency's new
Mark Flannery, a finance professor with the school's
Warrington School of Business Administration, will also serve as
the director of the SEC's Division of Economic and Risk
Analysis, a unit that studies the impact of SEC rules and
provides data analysis to help the enforcement and examination
Flannery previously taught at several other universities,
including the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and
the University of Pennsylvania.
He has also published a variety of research papers on
corporate finance, capital markets and banking, and systemic
"Professor Flannery is a widely respected economist with
extensive experience in many areas relevant to the SEC's
mission, including the regulation of financial institutions,
corporate finance, private funds, and credit ratings agencies,"
said SEC Chair Mary Jo White in a statement.
Since 2011, Flannery has been serving as a senior adviser to
the Office of Financial Research (OFR), a research arm of the
U.S. Treasury Department tasked with studying the market for
emerging potential systemic risks.
The OFR and the SEC have had a somewhat rocky relationship,
after the OFR in 2013 issued a controversial report warning that
the activities of large asset managers could pose risks.
The SEC, which regulates asset managers, took issue with
many claims in a draft of the report, saying it contained
The OFR made some changes the SEC requested, but the SEC was
still dissatisfied with the final product and later invited the
public to comment on the study's findings.
That prompted the industry and lawmakers from both political
parties on Capitol Hill to flood the regulators with a deluge of
comments that were highly critical of the report.
OFR has defended the report's findings, but the industry has
continued to criticize it, saying it contains flaws.
In addition to serving as an adviser to the OFR, Flannery
also has served on the Federal Reserve's Model Validation
Council since May 2012 and was a resident scholar for the New
York Fed's research department from 2009-2010.
He holds an undergraduate degree from Princeton University,
and a master's and doctorate from Yale University.
Flannery replaces former SEC Chief Economist Craig Lewis,
who departed the agency earlier this year to return to his
academic post at Vanderbilt University.
The SEC said Flannery will start his new job in September.
SEC Republican Commissioner Mike Piwowar, who is also an
economist, lauded the agency's announcement about Flannery's
He added that Flannery is "particularly well-suited" to help
the SEC as it continues working to modernize its disclosure
requirements, including rules for banks that have not been
updated since 1986.
(Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Editing by Bernard Orr)