The Securities and Exchange Commission announced Thursday that Chester Spatt, Chief Economist and Director of the Office of Economic Analysis (OEA), will leave the agency to return to academia at the end of July, according to an SEC press release.

Spatt will rejoin Carnegie Mellon University, where he serves as Mellon Bank Professor of Finance and Director of the Center for Financial Markets at the Tepper School of Business. His research and teaching there will focus upon economic issues related to securities regulation as well as asset allocation and taxes.

During his three years at the Commission, Spatt led the staff's economic analysis of key issues including implementation of options expensing through models and markets, mutual fund market timing and late trading, option grant and exercise backdating, executive compensation, Regulation SHO, shareholder voting, credit rating agencies and NRSROs, foreign private issuer deregistration and the economics of penalties and sanctions. In addition, he focused on fostering stronger ties between the SEC and the academic community, encouraging greater participation from academic experts in the rulemaking process.

Spatt has held academic positions at Carnegie Mellon since 1979, along with visiting professorships at Toulouse University, University of British Columbia and Princeton University. He was one of the founders of the Review of Financial Studies, considered among the leading journals in financial economics, and served as its second Executive Editor. He also is a Past President of both the Western Finance Association and the Society for Financial Studies. He received his Ph.D. and Master's degree in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania, and his Bachelor's degree in Economics from Princeton University.

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