Mengxin Zhao

Financial Economist
Office of Corporate Finance

Education Summary

  • Ph.D. Finance, University of Pittsburgh
  • M.A. Economics, State University of New York, Albany
  • B.A. Economics, Beijing University

Fields of Interest

  • Corporate governance
  • Mergers, acquisitions and restructuring
  • Law and Finance
  • Financial Economist
    Division of Economic and Risk Analysis
    U.S. Security Exchange Commission
    August 2016 - present

  • Associate Professor of Finance (with tenure)
    University of Alberta
    2014 – 2016

  • Assistant Professor of Finance
    University of Alberta
    2010 – 2014

  • Assistant Professor of Finance
    Bentley University
    Waltham, MA

  • Mariassunta Giannetti and Mengxi Zhao, "Board Ancestral Diversity and Fime Performance Volatility" Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis.

  • R. David McLean and Mengxin Zhao, "Cash Savings and Capital Markets" Journal of Empirical Finance.

  • Joseph P.H. Fan, Jun Huang, Felix Oberholzer-Gee, and Mengxin Zhao, Bureaucrats as Managers and Their Roles in Corporate Diversification, Journal of Corporate Finance, Forthcoming.

  • Hassan Tehranian, Mengxin Zhao, and Julie L. Zhu, 2014, Can Analysts Analyze Mergers?,  Management Science , 60 (4): 959-979.

  • R. David McLean and Mengxin Zhao, 2014, The Business Cycle, Investor Sentiment and Costly External Finance, Journal of Finance 69: 1377-1409.

  • Franklin Allen, Chenyu Shan, Jun Qian (Q.J), and Mengxin Zhao, 2014, The IPO of Industrial & Commercial Bank of China and the 'Chinese Model' of Privatizing Large Financial Institutions,  European Journal of Finance, 20: 7-9.

  • R. David McLean, Tianyu Zhang, and Mengxin Zhao, 2012,  Why Does the Law Matter? Investor Protection and its Effects on Investment, Finance, and Growth,  Journal of Finance, 67: 313-350.

  • Kristina Minnick and Mnegxin Zhao, 2009, Director Incentives and Option Backdating: Money or Reputation? Journal of Financial Research,  4: 449-477.

  • Kenneth Lehn, Sukesh Patro, and Mengxin Zhao, 2009, Determinants of the Size and Structure of Corporate Boards: 1935-2000, Financial Management 38.

  • Joseph PH Fan, Felix Oberholzer-Gee, Jun Huang, Troy D. Smith, and Mengxin Zhao, 2008, Diversification of Chinese Companies – An International Comparison, China Management Studies.

  • Kenneth Lehn, Sukesh Patro, Mengxin Zhao, 2007, Corporate Governance Indexes and Valuation: Which Causes Which?, Journal of Corporate Finance, December.

  • Joseph P.H. Fan, Oliver Rui and Mengxin Zhao, 2008, Public Governance and Corporate Finance: Evidence from Corruption Cases, Journal of Comparative Economics 36.

  • Kenneth Lehn and Mengxin Zhao, 2006, CEO Turnovers After Acquisitions: Are Bad Bidders Fired?, Journal of Finance 61(4): 1759-1811.


  • R. David McLean and Mengxin Zhao, Precautionary Cash Savings and Finance: Global Evidence.

  • The Cultural Foundations of Investor Protection: Evidence from Corporate

  • Governance Practices across the US" with Vladimir Gatchev and Christo Pirinsky

  • Mariassunta Giannetti and Mengxin Zhao, Board Diversity and Firm Performance Volatility.

  • R. David McLean, Jeffrey Pontiff and Mengxin Zhao, Equity Market Liberalization in Emerging Markets: A Contrarian View.


  • Paper presentation, 2016, RFS Cavalcade Annual Conference, Toronto. 
  • Paper presentation, 2016, ASSA, San Francisco.
  • Paper presentation, 2014, Asian FMA, Tokyo.
  • Paper presentation, 2013, Paris December 2013 Finance Meeting.
  • Paper presentation, 2013, European Finance Association Meeting, Cambridge, England.
  • Paper presentation, 2012, Financial Intermediation Society Annual Conference.


  • University of Delaware, 2017
  • University of Maryland, Accounting Department, 2017
  • ​Federal Reserve Board, 2016
  • ​Federal Reserve Board, 2016
  • ​Federal Reserve Board, 2016
  • University of Central Florida, 2016
  • U.S. Securities and Exchange Commision, 2016
  • DePaul University, 2016
  • Auburn University, 2014
  • University of Florida, 2014
  • Hitotsubashi University, Tokyo Japan, 2014
  • Simon Fraser University, 2014

Previous SEC Positions: