Mr. Laursen is an expert in financial products and institutions, markets, regulation, and risk management. He has more than 25 years of financial industry experience, which includes over 17 years as a Federal regulator, where he served as a policy-maker, supervisor, and senior examiner.
Mr. Laursen has provided expert testimony and analysis as well as consulting services for numerous public and private clients. He has testified in disputes involving investment and trading strategies, mortgage-backed securities, municipal finance, structured notes, financial institution accounting, and insider trading. He has consulted for the Department of Justice, the State Insurance Commissioner of Connecticut, and the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission.
Mr. Laursen previously served as the Federal Reserve Board’s Manager of Risk Policy and Guidance, where he wrote and interpreted financial regulations and guidance. In 2009, he authored new Federal Reserve guidance requiring large financial institutions to enhance trading book stress testing and value-at-risk modeling. He also worked closely with other U.S. and international financial regulators to craft new rules, including as a member of the Basel Committee’s Trading Book Group.
During the financial crisis, Mr. Laursen reported directly to Chairman Bernanke as well as other Governors and Reserve Bank Presidents on various risk, valuation, and regulatory issues. He led reviews of problem institutions and assisted in the development of special FRB actions to reduce market turmoil and economic damage.
Mr. Laursen has an MBA with a concentration in finance from the Wharton School and holds the Certified Regulatory and Compliance Professional designation from FINRA.
In mid-2007 during a special onsite review, assessed the daily liquidity and solvency position of Countrywide Financial Company. This included determining the values of numerous Countrywide portfolio MBS and mortgage securities whose wholesale market funding sources had dried up. Advised and reported findings to Federal Reserve Governors, Federal Reserve Discount Window Officers, and Federal Reserve Presidents, Yellen and Lacker.
During Fall 2007, worked with a top U.S. financial institution to implement appropriate valuations, risk modeling processes, and regulatory capital charges for a significant book of Super-Senior CDO positions held in the institution’s trading book. Reported directly to Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke on the earnings and regulatory capital impact of the agreed upon approach.
Analyzed the appropriateness of the design and pricing of a specialized municipal finance structure that included related bond remarketing, credit enhancement, and an interest rate swap. Assessed the foreseeability of economic issues that negatively impacted the structure. Provided deposition, submitted report, and testified in Federal Court.
In the context of a dispute regarding the fiduciary duties of a financial institution with respect to ERISA clients, assessed the institution’s investment recommendation process and controls. This included an assessment of the institution’s information walls and related processes, designed to prevent trading on material non-public information and inappropriate conflicts of interest. Report submitted and deposition provided. Judge granted motion for summary judgment for case portion, agreeing with report and deposition submitted.
Evaluated the market and credit risk of various structured notes in the context of the 2007-2009 financial market turmoil. Determined if there was an appropriate and reasonable basis to recommend products to clients. Reported on the foreseeability and impact of the financial crisis on the performance of the debt instruments.
Evaluated the risk management and valuation processes applied by a top-10 U.S. insurance conglomerate to it various asset portfolios. This included an assessment of structured finance holdings (various ABS and MBS) as well as financial derivatives including interest rate swaps and credit default swaps. The assignment involved an assessment of the appropriateness of valuations and impairments assigned to various securities and derivatives during the financial crisis period. Prepared a report and presentation to the State Insurance Commissioner of Connecticut.
As part of a confidential consulting matter, evaluated risk and risk management issues with respect to major international hedge fund
Testifying expert for defendants’ counsel, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP and Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP, in connection with securities impairment determinations made by Thornburg Mortgage, Inc. executives in the company’s 2007 10-K financial report. United States District Court for the District of New Mexico, Case No. 1:12-cv-00257-JB-LFG.
Testifying expert for defendants’ counsel, Vinson and Elkins, in connection with a municipal bond issuance and associated interest rate swap, remarketing agreement, bond insurance, and surety bond. United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana Case No. 2:08-cv-03949-KDE-SS.
Testifying expert for plaintiff’s counsel, Lydecker Diaz, in connection with the insolvency of a Florida-based property insurance conglomerate, and the inability of the conglomerate to raise additional capital in 2005. Circuit Court of the Second Judicial Circuit in and for Leon County – Jury Trial.
Testifying expert for claimant’s counsel, Dentons UKMEA LLP, in connection with alleged damages resulting from a regulator’s failure to supervise a bank in accordance with required standards. Arbitration Proceedings Brought Under the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Rules and the Agreement on Promotion, Protection, and the Guarantee of Investments Among Member States of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference.
Testifying expert for respondent’s counsel, Rogers & Hardin LLP and Ciklin Lubitz Martens & O’Connell, in disputes involving employee conversions of defined benefit plans to defined contribution plans along with risks, disclosures, and potential financial outcomes. Various FINRA Dispute Resolution Arbitrations.
Testifying expert for respondent’s counsel, Bingham McCutchen LLP, in connection with investments in various auction-rate securities. FINRA Dispute Resolution Arbitration No. 11-02075.
Testifying expert for respondent’s counsel, Bressler, Amery & Ross PC, Keesal, Young & Logan, and Ciklin Lubitz Martens & O’Connell, in disputes involving various Lehman Brothers structured note investments and related product, issuer, and market risks, market events, and product disclosures. Various FINRA Dispute Resolution Arbitrations.
Testifying expert for respondent’s counsel, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton and Garrison LLP, in connection with a fiduciary client’s investment in structured investment vehicle (SIV) debt, and related bank information barriers, material non-public information rules, and potential conflicts of interest. United States District Court, Southern District of New York. Civil Action No. 09-00686.
BSA and AML Enforcement Trends and D&O Liability
April 4, 2014
Published in the D&O Diary
The Proposed Volcker Rule Analysis and Panel Discussion
February 14, 2012
Presented at the PRMIA Meeting, New York, NY
Banking Entity Trading Under the Volcker Rule
Published on Advisor Perspectives
Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, MBA
University of Miami, Bachelor of Business Administration