Research Economist

US Other Agencies and Independent Organizations - Washington, DC4.5

Full-time | Part-time | Commission
Duties
Summary
The Office of the Chief Economist conducts research on major policy issues facing the Commission; assesses the economic impact of regulatory changes on derivatives & related commodities & financial markets; participates in the development of Commission rulemakings; partners with other CFTC Offices/Divisions to provide quantitative & economic analysis for the Commission; conducts special studies & evaluations; & produces public-facing research targeting the general public & academic audiences.

Responsibilities
Note: Multiple selections will be filled from this announcement in each geographic location (Washington, DC, New York, NY). Multiple referral lists will be issued throughout the course of this vacancy announcement with the first cut-off as follows:

The first list of candidates will be issued September 26, 2019. Applications submitted prior to 11:59 p.m. EST ON September 17, 2019 will receive first consideration for certification. Additional lists of candidates will be issued as needed until the vacancy announcement closes on (November 14, 2019). The closing date of the announcement may be changed to close on an earlier date or extended, as necessary, until vacancies are filled.
As a Research Economist your duties will include the following:

Providing rigorous economic analyses related to derivatives (futures and swaps) markets. Evaluating market structure and trading practices in the futures, options and swaps markets for their impacts on price discovery, liquidity, and risk.

These responsibilities will contribute to the Commission's policy development and enforcement proceedings; the analyses will be used by the Commission's various Divisions. This includes conducting research on topics within the scope of the Commission's policy agenda that can be expected to maintain and enhance the Commission's standing among its peer agencies. In addition, research will serve to inform and educate the general public about markets the Commission regulates through white papers and peer-reviewed research publications.

Among the prospective topics of study are:
  • systemic risk issues related to derivatives, including theoretical and empirical analyses of margin, clearing, liquidity, optimal levels of transparency, and market design;
  • econometric analysis of derivatives data (exchange-traded and over-the-counter);
  • theoretical and econometric analysis of high frequency data, including order book and message data;
  • models of trading activity, intermediation, and market microstructure, including network analyses of derivatives markets;
  • economic and empirical analysis of regulations on markets.
Post Dodd-Frank, the regulatory data available to the Commission includes over-the-counter swap transactions and positions from over 100 registered swap dealers. This rich data augments the traditional message, transaction, and position data for listed futures markets received by the Commission. This data and other data sets will be analyzed in order to provide advice and guidance to the Chief Economist and the Commission. As such, the incumbent is expected to have technical knowledge in (1) econometric analyses of high frequency data, (2) leading edge models of financial market behavior, and (3) experience with large, complex data sets. Experience analyzing unstructured data, coupled with a deep interest in the institutional practices associated with the data, would be beneficial.

Travel Required
Occasional travel - 15% or less

Supervisory status
No

Promotion Potential
14

Job family (Series)
0110 Economist

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Requirements

Requirements
Conditions of Employment
U.S. Citizenship.
Background/Security Investigation.
Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered for Selective Service
A one-year probationary period may be required
You will be rated on the following Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs):

Economics and Accounting
Research
Oral Communication
Written Communication
Writing samples of a Job Market Research Paper will be required at time of interview.

Qualifications
Basic Requirement

Applicants must possess one of the following-

A) Successful completion of a full 4-year course of study in an accredited college or university leading to a bachelor's or higher degree in economics that included at least 21 semester hours in economics and 3 semester hours in statistics, accounting, or calculus. (Transcripts MUST be submitted) –OR

B) Possession of courses equivalent to a major as shown in A above plus additional education or appropriate experience. (Transcripts MUST be submitted)

In addition to the basic requirements for this position:
To qualify for this position at the CT-12 level, applicants must have at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the CT/GS-11 level in the Federal service or comparable pay band system.

Specialized experience is defined as: Work that provides the usage of applied economic analysis by showing evidence of contributions to research projects in economic and finance that have led to a completed white papers, working papers, or publications. Able to convey research results both verbally and in writing by showing samples of past writings and/or formal presentations. Applicant must know how to use SAS, SQL, Python, or R for the statistical analysis of large data sets by showing completed analyses of data sets containing at least 1 million rows of data. In addition, applicant must be familiar with derivatives and derivatives markets (contingent cash flows, institutional details, exchanges vs. over-the-counter markets, commodity and financial products), shown by relevant education and work experience.

To qualify for this position at the CT-13 level, applicants must have at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the CT/GS-12 level in the Federal service or comparable pay band system.

Specialized experience is defined as: Experience conducting rigorous applied economic analysis by showing evidence of publications in peer-reviewed economic or finance journals. Conveying research results both verbally and in writing by showing evidence of presentations that have been performed at an academic, industry or government conference. Applicant must also have experience using SAS, SQL, Python, or R for the statistical analysis of large data sets by showing evidence of having completed analyses of data sets which contains at least 1 million rows of data. In addition, the applicant must have an understanding of derivatives and derivatives markets (pricing methodologies, institutional details, exchanges vs. over-the-counter markets, commodity and financial products), shown by relevant education and work experience.

To qualify for this position at the CT-14 level, applicants must have at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the CT/GS-13 level in the Federal service or comparable pay band system.

Specialized experience is defined as: A technical expert who has a comprehensive knowledge and experience of financial, economic, and econometric principles and theories and provides authoritative bases for research and policy positions on futures, options and swaps. In-depth experience conducting rigorous applied economic analysis by showing evidence of publications in peer-reviewed economic or finance journals. Conveying research results both verbally and in writing by showing evidence of presentations that have been performed at an academic, industry or government conference. Applicant must also have experience using SAS, SQL, Python, or R for the statistical analysis of large data sets by showing evidence of having completed analyses of data sets which contains at least 1 million rows of data. In addition, the applicant must have a thorough understanding of derivatives and derivatives markets (pricing methodologies, institutional details, exchanges vs. over-the-counter markets, commodity and financial products), shown by relevant education and work experience.

Applications will be accepted from students who expect to complete qualifying education within 9 months from the date of application.

However, candidates who are selected for the position must provide documentation of completing all requirements for a Ph. D or equivalent doctoral degree prior to entering on duty.

A copy of your official transcript(s) are also required prior to your first day

SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR FOREIGN EDUCATION: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show that the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been deemed equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit:

http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html

Translated transcripts are required. Only education/experience obtained by 11:59 pm EST on the closing date of this announcement will be considered.

Education
Experience cannot be substituted for education.

Additional information
Relocation. Relocation expenses will not be paid.

Probationary Period. Candidates selected under competitive examining procedures will subject to a one-year probationary period.

CTAP and ICTAP. Candidates will be eligible if it is determined that they have exceeded the minimum qualifications for the position by attaining at least a rating of 85 out of 100. Information about CTAP/ICTAP eligibility is on the Office of Personnel Management's Career Transition Resources website at: http://www.opm.gov/ctap/index.asp.

CTAP applicants MUST submit the following documents: 1. A copy of your specific RIF notice, written notice of your expected separation or other documentation of priority consideration status; 2. A copy of your latest SF-50 - noting current position, grade level, and duty location; 3. A copy of your latest performance appraisal including your rating; and 4. Any documentation from your agency that shows your current promotion potential.

ICTAP applicants MUST submit the following: 1. A copy of your RIF separation notice, notice of proposed removal for failure to relocate, or notice of disability annuity termination; 2. A copy of your SF-50 "Notification of Personnel Action", documenting your RIF separation, noting your position, grade level, and duty location; 3. A copy of your latest performance appraisal including your rating; and 4. Any documentation from your agency that shows your current promotion potential.

The following links provide information on how you may be eligible for various hiring authorities: 1. VRA - http://federaljobs.net/veterans.htm 2. VEOA - http://opm.gov/staffingPortal/Vetguide.asp 3. 30% or more disabled veteran - http://opm.gov/staffingPortal/Vetguide.asp 4. Persons with disabilities - http://www.opm.gov/DISABILITY/ 5. CTAP - http://www.opm.gov/ctap/ 6. ICTAP - http://www.opm.gov/ctap/

EEO Policy Statement. The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, genetic information, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, age, membership in an employee organization, or other non-merit factor.

Reasonable Accommodation. Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case

The law prohibits public officials from appointing, promoting, or recommending their relatives. The law prohibits requesting, making, transmitting, accepting, or considering political recommendations for employment or other personnel actions for non-political positions. This includes recommendations from Members of Congress, Congressional employees, elected state or local officials, and political party officials and any recommendation based on party affiliation.

How You Will Be Evaluated
You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Your application will be evaluated and rated under CFTC Category Rating and Selection Procedures. Your resume and supporting documentation will be used to determine whether you meet the job qualifications listed in this announcement. If you are minimally qualified for this job, your resume and supporting documentation will be compared to your responses on the online assessment questionnaire. If you rate yourself higher than is supported by your application materials, your responses may be adjusted and/or you may be excluded from consideration for this job. Your application will then be placed in one of three categories: Best Qualified, Well Qualified, or Qualified. Names of all candidates in the best qualified category will be sent to the hiring official for employment consideration. Candidates within the best qualified category who are eligible for veteran’s preference will receive selection priority over non-veteran preference eligibles.

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Background checks and security clearance
Security clearance
Other

Drug test required
No

Required Documents

Required Documents
Resume showing relevant experience (cover letter optional)
An unofficial college transcript (Failure to submit this form will result in your application not being considered) Note: if you are selected for this position, official transcript(s) will be required prior to your first day. Submit only if specified in the announcement. (Use if education is being credited for the purpose of meeting minimum qualification requirements or if grade point average is being used to determine superior academic achievement.)
If you are requesting Veteran preference you must submit documentation (as applicable:)
Copy of Member Copy 4 of your DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty);
Standard Form (SF) 15, "Application for 10-Point Veteran's Preference;
VA Letter
Applications will be accepted from students who expect to complete qualifying education within 9 months from the date of application. However, all requirements for a PH. D or equivalent doctoral degree must be completed before entry on duty.

Veterans Preference. If you are entitled to veteran preference, you should indicate the type of veteran preference you are claiming on your resume. In order to verify your veteran preference entitlement, please submit a copy of the Member Copy 4 of your DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty); official statement of service from your command if you are currently on active duty; or other official documentation (e.g., documentation of receipt of a campaign badge or expeditionary medal) that shows your military service was performed under honorable conditions.
In addition, if you are a disabled veteran, a Purple Heart recipient, or widow/widower of a veteran, the spouse of a disabled veteran or the natural mother of a disabled or deceased veteran, you must submit a Standard Form (SF) 15, “Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference,” and the other required documentation identified on the reverse side of the SF-15 to support your preference claim.
Although veteran preference points are not assigned under the category rating procedures described under “How You Will Be Evaluated,” veteran preference eligibles are listed ahead of non-veterans within each category for which they are qualified. In addition, qualified veterans with a compensable service-disconnected disability of 10% or more are placed at the top of the highest quality category (i.e., Best Qualified).
If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:
Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

Benefits

Benefits
A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.

We offer a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, life insurance, employer paid dental, medical benefits, Life Cycle Fund and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System. Explore the major benefits offered to CFTC employees at http://www.cftc.gov/About/Careers/EmployeeBenefits/index.htm.

Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.