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The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC)’s Economics and Risk Analysis and Economic and Policy Analysis Divisions within the Supervision and Risk Analysis Department offer unique opportunities for research economists, financial economists, statisticians, mathematicians, financial analysts, and research analysts.

About the Economics and Risk Analysis Division

Economics and Risk Analysis (E&RA) staff advance the OCC’s mission by applying their skills and expertise in economic theory, quantitative methodology, and econometrics. Economics and Risk Analysis frequently engage with lawyers, bankers, examiners, and policy specialists to provide a quantitative perspective on important issues to support bank examinations; identify emerging risks; and help shape rules, regulations, and supervisory guidance. The Economics and Risk Analysis Division also has access to many commercial data services and datasets, regulatory data, and high-performing computing infrastructure to meet its modeling and analytical needs.

Financial research economists are located within the Economic and Risk Analysis Division’s four business units. Financial research economists within the four business units, Commercial Credit, Compliance, Market, Retail Credit, specialize and focus on a specific risk area or topic.

Financial research economists typically have doctorates that represent an exceptionally diverse range of interests and expertise that include, but not limited to

  • consumer welfare,
  • community development and investment,
  • discrimination,
  • household finance,
  • consumer credit risk,
  • capital markets, and commercial credit,
  • operational risk,
  • securitization,
  • asset management

The primary responsibility of financial research economists is to review and assess a bank’s model risk that may be used for

  • underwriting,
  • originating,
  • pricing,
  • account management,
  • loss forecasting for reserves,
  • counterparty credit risk,
  • asset management,
  • net revenue modeling,
  • securitization,
  • capital,
  • BSA/AML compliance,
  • OFAC compliance,
  • monitoring, and
  • stress testing purposes.

In addition, economists apply their quantitative expertise to identify emerging risks, support agency initiatives and priorities, and inform policies, rules, and regulations. Finally, financial research economists conduct empirical research on a range of topics to support the OCC mission.

Economists are encouraged to present their work at academic, industry, and regulatory conferences such as the annual meetings of the American Economic Association, the annual meetings of the American Finance Association, and the National Bureau of Economic Research Summer Institute as well as publish their work in academic journals such as the Journal of Banking and Finance, the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analyses, and Journal of Urban Economics.

Research assistants, financial analysts, and financial economists within the Economics and Risk Analysis apply their quantitative, data analysis, and programming skills to carry out assignments in support of the financial research economists in their research, supervisory, and policy projects.

These analysts are expected to have knowledge of standard statistical software packages and to be able to develop statistical programs and codes for data analysis.

At the entry level, analysts are responsible for

  • summarizing the relevant literature,
  • identifying relevant datasets,
  • summarize data, and
  • preparing, validating, and aggregating data used for analysis, publications, or examinations.

At the more senior level, analysts

  • develop tools to help identify and monitor risks and trends,
  • produce analyses and insights to the data,
  • merge and manipulate large and complex datasets, and

have developed expertise in programming languages, relevant data and subject areas to answer questions posed internally and externally on bank/consumer behavior or current economic conditions.

About the Economic and Policy Analysis Division

Economic and Policy Analysis (E&PA) staff advance the OCC’s mission by combining applied business economic skills with banking industry expertise to support and inform

  • OCC domestic and international supervision efforts,
  • policy formulation and rules assessments, and
  • banker and public outreach.

Economic and Policy Analysis Financial Economists are located within the group’s three business units– Economic and Banking Condition, Policy Analysis, and International Risk Supervision.

Collectively, E&PA staff identifies risks and connections between macroeconomic and financial market trends, regulatory and policy conditions, and the U.S. banking industry. This work

  • supports effective bank supervision,
  • enhances policy design,
  • determines the economic cost of rules, and
  • connects the influence of longer-run historical, secular economic and banking industry trends with present and future developments.

Considering international and domestic dimensions, staff members assess how the economic operating environment influences banks’ business decisions, strategies, and risk management and how banking industry trends in turn affect sectoral, regional, and macroeconomic performance.

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