Valentin Haddad is an associate professor of finance at UCLA Anderson School of Management and a research fellow for the National Bureau of Economic Research’s asset pricing program. He joined the faculty from Princeton University.
Initially pursuing an education in science as an undergraduate in his native France, Haddad found his way to economics and was immediately convinced of the fit. “I responded to finance as a field of economics that combined sophisticated theory with a very practical, real-world-oriented approach,” he says. “It’s an area where quantitative methods are necessary, but so is an acute understanding of how people and institutions interact in the marketplace.”
Haddad’s research interests are in asset pricing and macroeconomics with financial frictions. He has looked at how financial institutions trade and manage risk, and how their practices affect market prices and the economy — and found that that “a lot of what we thought was obvious is not.” He recently studied life insurance company investments: “Traditionally,” he says, “we would teach students that they invest in treasuries in order not to take any risk. My coauthors and I found out that their investments do not look like this at all, that they are actually quite risky. The risk is there for a good reason: to engage in profitable long-term asset management.”
Haddad earned a joint Ph.D. in economics and finance from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and Department of Economics and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. “I firmly believe that various fields of economics have a lot to teach each other,” he says. “There is so much cross-fertilization between the business world and the academic world. The people surrounding me have always been the platform pushing me forward. And Anderson is definitely a place where everybody tries to push each other forward.”
Ph.D. Economics and Finance, 2012, University of Chicago
MBA, 2012, University of Chicago Booth School of Business
B.Sc., M.Sc. Applied Mathematics and Economics, 2008, Ecole Polytechnique, France