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Jeffrey Harris, Chief Economist and Director of the SEC’s Division of Economic and Risk Analysis, to Leave the Agency


Washington D.C., May 29, 2018 —

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that Dr. Jeffrey H. Harris, the Chief Economist and Director of the Division of Economic and Risk Analysis (DERA) and a Professor of Finance at American University’s Kogod School of Business, will leave the agency at the end of May to return to academia full time. 

Dr. Harris joined the SEC in September 2017 and has led DERA’s team of economists and analysts working on a wide range of activities including agency policy, rulemaking, enforcement and examinations, and risk analysis.  As Director and Chief Economist, Dr. Harris focused on data driven projects —including the recently proposed transaction fee pilot for National Market System (NMS) stocks—as well as increasing the opportunities for DERA staff to engage in research in areas that support the Commission’s mission. 

“DERA’s work is essential to, and substantially benefits, a wide range of Commission activity, including rulemaking, surveillance and enforcement, and Dr. Harris has brought rigor and experience to these efforts,” said Chairman Jay Clayton.  “I am grateful to Jeff for his willingness to serve the Commission and will miss him personally and professionally.”

“I would like to thank Chairman Clayton and Commissioners Stein, Piwowar, Peirce, and Jackson for the opportunity to serve the agency and investors,” said Dr. Harris. “It has been a particular honor to have worked alongside Commissioner Piwowar who has been steadfastly supportive of the DERA staff as well as a relentless champion for expanding the use of economic analysis throughout Commission decision making.”  Dr. Harris added, “It has also been a pleasure and privilege to work alongside the talented and dedicated staff in DERA and throughout the SEC on important issues for Main Street investors and many other participants in our markets.” 

Dr. Harris has an extensive background in market microstructure and regulatory issues.  He has served as Chief Economist at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and as a Visiting Academic at both the Nasdaq Stock Market and the SEC. He has previously held faculty appointments as the Dean’s Chair in Finance at the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University, as the Collins Chair of Finance in the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University (visiting), and at the University of Delaware, the University of Notre Dame, and The Ohio State University.

Dr. Harris received his undergraduate degree and MBA from the University of Iowa and earned his Ph.D. in Finance from The Ohio State University.


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