Speakers

breval-final_0Mr. Eric R. Breval, CEO of Swiss Federal Social Security Funds – Fonds de compensation AVS/AI/APG – Ausgleichsfonds AHV/IV/EO. Eric Breval started his professional career as an analyst at an M&A firm in Houston, Texas. From there he moved in 1989 to Switzerland to join BCV Group in Lausanne, first as a fund manager, then as CIO of Gerifonds, the mutual fund management company affiliated with the Bank. He was also a Board member of Gerifonds. Since 2003 he is CEO of the Ausgleichsfonds AHV/IV/EO (Swiss Federal Social Security Funds), whose Swiss offices are located in Geneva. Eric has an MBA from Duke University and is both a CFA and a CAIA charter holder.

Pierre Collin-Dufresne, Professor at SFI@EPF. He is known for his important contributions to the study of the evolution of interest rates, and the risks related to companies going out of business. He was one of the first scientists to put forward a generic method of taking account of the phenomena of contagion of assets subject to credit risk. This work is particularly relevant at a time when financial institutions and central banks are trying to develop better models of the evaluation of defaulting risks. It’s worth noting that he worked at Goldman Sachs in New York.

Bart Diris,  Assistant Professor in Financial Econometrics at Erasmus University Rotterdam. He holds a Ph.D. in Finance and Econometrics from Maastricht University. During his PhD he spent semesters abroad at the Stockholm School of Economics and at Harvard University. His research focuses on long-term portfolio choice and the predictability of asset returns. He recently won the Commonfund prize for the best paper on foundation and endowment asset management at the EFA 2011 in Stockholm.

Bastien Drut, Strategist at Amundi Asset Management, Fixed-Income and Forex Strategy (4 years professional experience). Graduate of the ENSAE, Paris School of Economics and of the Ecole Centrale de Lyon. He also defended his PhD thesis in economics (Université Libre de Bruxelles and Paris Ouest University).

Amit Goyal, Professor of Finance at HEC Lausanne. Formerly on the faculty of Emory University (Atlanta, USA), he holds a Ph.D. in Finance from University of California at Los Angeles. He has research interests in empirical asset pricing, predictability of stock returns, portfolio optimization, and pension funds. His papers have been published in a variety of academic journals including the Journal of Finance, the Journal of Financial Economics, and the Review of Financial Studies.

Philippe Ithurbide joined Amundi Asset Management as global head of Research, Analysis and Strategy in July 2010. Since 2006, Philippe Ithurbide has worked at « Caisse de Dépôt et Placement du Québec » (Montréal). A member of the Executive Committee and of the asset allocation committee he was, in turn, Executive Vice President in charge of fixed income, currency and credit from 2007 to 2009, and of multi-asset class overlay strategy subsequently. He was previously in charge of strategic investment in the fixed income and credit division. Prior to that, he worked for Société Générale (SG Corporate and Investment Bank) from 1991 to 2006 as Head of Research in foreign exchange, fixed income and commodities, having joined as Chief Economist. Member of the board of SG’s pension fund N(2000-2006), he was in charge of asset allocation. In 1989 he was appointed Chief Economist at the Manufacturers Hanover Bank after 2 years in the same role at the Banque Française de Commerce Extérieur (BFCE). Philippe Ithurbide started his career as teacher/researcher at the University of Bordeaux, Laboratoire d’Analyse et de Recherche Économiques (part of the Centre national de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)) in 1982. For more than 20 years he taught at several universities, in France (in Bordeaux in particular), and more recently, between 2000 and 2005, at HEC Paris. He gave lectures in Spain, in Columbia, in the US. He published papers on international finance (topics such as “Rational bubbles and gold market”, “Voluntary exports restraints: a general equilibrium model”, Protectionism and exchange rate regime”, “Pension funds: the role for Indexed linked bonds in an Asset-Liabilities Management perspective” …) and books such as “The economic status of gold”, or “French firms and foreign exchange risk: dollar versus EMS”. Born in 1958, Philippe Ithurbide holds a PhD in International Economics and Finance, and Aptitude for Research Direction from the University of Bordeaux.

Marielle de Jong heads the fixed-income quantitative research team at Amundi Asset Management in Paris. Before joining Amundi in 2011, she was vice-president of the financial engineering team at Sinopia (Paris-based HSBC subsidiary). She started her working career in London in 1994 as a research analyst with BARRA and equity fund manager with Quaestor (Yasuda subsidiary). She holds a graduate degree in econometrics from the Erasmus University in Rotterdam, an MSc from Cambridge (UK), and a PhD in finance from the University of Aix-Marseille.

Vera Kupper Staub,  starting 2012 Vera Kupper Staub is vice-president of the newly founded Swiss pension fund regulator «Commission de haute surveillance de la prévoyance professionelle». From 2000 to 2010 she was with the City of Zurich Pension Fund, first as Deputy CIO, starting 2005 as Chief Investment Officer. The fund’s assets under management amount to approx. CHF 12 bn, all externally managed. Vera holds a PhD in finance from the University of Zurich. She started her professional carrier 1992 at a Swiss pension fund consulting firm (ECOFIN). 1997 she changed side and joined the institutional asset management of UBS where she worked in the area of asset allocation and currency. From 2006 to 2011 Vera was member of the board of ASIP, the Swiss Pension Fund Association, and president of its committee covering investment issues.

Frédéric Lelièvre heads the Economics & Finance Section of «Le Temps». Based in Geneva, Le Temps is the main national swiss newspaper in french of Switzerland, with a readership above 130000 readers and a daily circulation of 45000 units. Le Temps puts a strong emphasis on the economic field, and earned a recognized expertise in the energy area. Frédéric Lelièvre joined Le Temps in 2001 to cover the investment fund industry, and then was nominated vice head of the Economic section from 2003 to 2008. He also enhanced http://www.letemps.ch/economie_finance. French citizen, he got a master degree in Financial economics at Sciences Po Paris in 1995. Before joining Le Temps, he worked 4 years in the weekly Paris based magazine «Problèmes économiques».

Didier Maillard is Senior Advisor to Amundi on Research. He started his academic career in 2001 as Professor at the Conservatoire national des arts et métiers, holding the Chair of Banking. Previously, he has been an economist at the French Ministry of Finance and at the OECD (1980-1992) – economic forecasts, economic policy, public finance, tax studies, financial sector – and has occupied various positions at Paribas (and then BNP Paribas) from 1992 to 2001: chief economist, head of asset management, risk advisory. He is a graduate from Ecole polytechnique (Paris) and Ecole nationale d’administration. His main research fields are portfolio optimization, asset management, wealth management and tax incidence (in particular on investment return).

Jacques-André Monnier, CEO and co–founder of Synopsis Asset Management SA (2010), a company active in the areas of asset management and investment guidance for Swiss pension funds. Jacques-André was also the founder and director of the “Client Relationship” department at IAM Asset Management SA. Prior to that, he was in charge of the institutional investment division of UBS Lausanne. Jacques-André holds an EMBA in management and finance from HEC Lausanne (2007) as well as a master degree in finance, and is a Certified International Investment Analyst CIIA. A familiar face to many pension fund administrators, Jacques André has been providing various platforms for discussion, the most recent of which was a think tank around the pertinence of ALM studies and the mechanisms behind the occurrence of financial crises.

Michael Rockinger, Professor of Finance at HEC, the Business School of the University of Lausanne. His domain of research could be defined as financial econometrics and computational finance. What he likes are models that work in practice as opposed to mathematical beauties that have closed form solutions but that do not work as the markets would predict.
His most recent research focuses on portfolio allocation in the long run. In that research he shows that a long run investor would be willing to invest much more in risky assets than in a static buy and hold portfolio. Interestingly, even though it is very difficult to predict asset returns, it turns out that in the long run this little predictability has significant impact. Other research has to do with: aggregating risks for very large portfolios; detecting jumps in high-frequency data using an explicit microstructure model; portfolio allocation when asset returns are non-Gaussian.

Peter Schotman, Professor of Empirical Finance at Maastricht University. He studied econometrics at Erasmus University Rotterdam, where he also finished his PhD dissertation Empirical Studies on the Behaviour of Interest Rates and Exchange Rates. He held visiting positions at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University, the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, GREQAM in Marseille, the Stockholm School of Economics and the Swedish Institute for Financial Research (SIFR).
He has published on a wide variety of topics in financial econometrics including models for the term structure of interest rates and interest rate derivatives, exchange rate dynamics and volatility, the international integration of financial markets, price discovery on financial markets and measurement of risk preferences. His current research interests focus on pension finance, long-term investment decisions and portfolio management. He is the coordinator of the research theme Balance Sheet Management for Pension Funds and Insurance Companies of Netspar, a Dutch network for research on aging and pensions.

Chester L. Spatt, Pamela R. and Kenneth B. Dunn Professor of Finance at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University and Director of its Center for Financial Markets, where he has taught since 1979. He served as Chief Economist of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Director of its Office of Economic Analysis from July 2004 through July 2007. He earned his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Pennsylvania and received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University.
Professor Spatt has analyzed extensively market structure, pricing and valuation, and the impact of information in the marketplace.  His co-authored 2004 paper in the Journal of Finance on asset location won TIAA-CREF’s Paul Samuelson Award for the Best Publication on Lifelong Financial Security. He has served as Executive Editor and one of the founding editors of the Review of Financial Studies, President and a member of the Founding Committee of the Society for Financial Studies, President of the Western Finance Association, and is currently an Associate Editor of several finance journals. He also is currently a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, Senior Economic Adviser to Kalorama Partners, a Member of the Shadow Financial Regulatory Committee as well as the Financial Economists Roundtable and a Fellow of the TIAA—CREF Institute.

Luis M. Viceira, George E. Bates Professor at the Harvard Business School, where he does research and teaches in the areas of investment management and capital markets. He holds a bachelor degree from the Universidad Autónoma in Madrid, and a M.A. degree and a Ph.D. degree from Harvard University. He has developed research and case studies on the design of asset allocation strategies for long-term investorsand the management and organization of large institutional investors. He has also developed research in asset pricing, with particular emphasis on the study of the term structure of interest rates, and in international finance, with particular emphasis on currency hedging and capital market integration. He is the author of multiple articles published in leading academic and practitioner-oriented finance and economic journals, including the Journal of Finance, the Journal of Financial Economics, the Review of Financial Studies, the Review of Finance, the American Economic Review, the Quarterly Journal of Economics, or the Financial Analysts Journal. He is also the author of the book “Strategic Asset Allocation,” with J. Y. Campbell. His research has received several awards recognizing its contributions to the theory and practice of asset management, including the TIAA-CREF Paul Samuelson Award, the 2005 Graham and Dodd Award by the CFA Institute, and the 2004 Prize for Financial Innovation of the Q-Group, Inquire Europe, and Inquire U.K.

Bas Werker is a professor of Econometrics and Finance at Tilburg University. He is also affiliated to the Duisenberg School of Finance. His research interests cover various fields in asset pricing and asymptotic statistics. He has published work in journals as the Annals of Statistics, the Journal of Econometrics, the Journal of Finance, the JRSS-B, and the Review of Financial Studies. He has been involved in the supervision of several PhD projects. In the past he has been affiliated to Université de Sciences Sociales in Toulouse and, from 1997-2000 the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ECARES). He has taught courses in econometrics, investment analysis, and statistics at both the undergraduate and graduate level in various schools around the world. He is a board member of the Tilburg Center of Finance, senior researcher at the CentER for Applied Research, research fellow of Netspar, and chairman of the Department of Econometrics and Operations Research since February 2008.