Securities and Exchange Commission enforcement director Stephen M. Cutler, whose tenure included investigations of some of the largest financial reporting failures in the nation's history, is leaving the commission next month to return to the private sector, the agency said. The agency has not yet named a successor.

During his tenure as enforcement director, which began in October 2001, Cutler, 43, oversaw the SEC's investigations of mammoth financial reporting failures that included Enron, WorldCom, Adelphia, Qwest, Tyco and HealthSouth, and helped the commission obtain judgments totaling more than $6 billion.

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