PracticeConsultingWashington appoints interim SEC chief

Washington appoints interim SEC chief

US President George W Bush has appointed Laura Unger as acting chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission following the resignation of Arthur Levitt.

Unger, a Republican, joins Democrats Isaac Hunt and Paul Carey on the three-member panel.

The appointment of the 40-year-old as an interim chairman was expected while Bush seeks a permanent replacement whose appointment must be ratified by the US Senate.

Unger has served as a commissioner of the SEC since 1997 and is best-known for championing the role of technology in the financial markets.

Levitt, 69, was the longest-serving chairman in the history of the SEC having been appointed by President Clinton in July 1993 and re-appointed for a second term in 1998. His term was due to end in 2003.

Last year he was at the forefront of accounting news, following his crusade for a new set of regulations ensuring auditor independence to safeguard investor confidence in financial reporting.

Likely contenders for the position full-time include Washington-based lawyer James Doty, Pfizer chairman William Steere and Republican congressman Christopher Cox. The process of choosing the 26th SEC chairman is expected to last several months.

Links

Arthur Levitt to resign from SEC

SEC Analysis – SEC wins audit war

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