PCAOB chairman up for SEC top job

The head of the US accounting watchdog could be in line to take over the top job at America’s financial regulator after its current chairman unexpectedly stepped down yesterday.

Link: Is the SEC a ‘gorilla with a machine gun’?

Securities and Exchange Commission chairman William Donaldson is to step down from his role at the end of the month, two years before his term was due to end, to spend more time with his family and to return to a career in the private sector.

William McDonough, current chairman of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board – the body created by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act to watch over the accounting profession – is one of the names being mentioned as Donaldson’s replacement, according to The Times.

However, his chances may suffer due to his friendship with the current incumbent, who has not made himself popular on Wall Street or with Republicans.

Also in the frame for the job is Cynthia Glassman, one of the current Republican commissioners, and John Reed, former chairman of Citigroup and the New York Stock Exchange.

Donaldson was key in implementing much of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, with US companies filing reports on internal controls for the first time under his stewardship. Donaldson was also responsible for granting extensions to non-US companies that fall under the legislation, who now do not have to make internal control reports until 15 July 2006.

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