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Like every big investment bank, Credit Suisse First Boston is scrambling to ensure that its research analysts are independent from its bankers. And who better to head that effort than a former director of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s enforcement division? Lucky for CSFB, there’s one on staff already: Gary Lynch joined the bank as global general counsel in August 2001, having headed up the SEC’s enforcement division from 1985 to 1989. This past December, CSFB elevated Lynch to vice-chairman and added oversight of the research department to his list of responsibilities. Lynch is continuing as a member of the bank’s operating committee and its executive board. In a press statement, CSFB chief executive officer John Mack praised Lynch’s “impeccable insight and judgment” and spoke of the “absolute integrity” the attorney brings to the watchdog post. That job is expanding. Over the past year and a half, CSFB has adopted new research safeguards. It was one of the first Wall Street firms to adopt New York attorney general Eliot Spitzer’s Wall Street reform proposals (now policy). It was also among the first to prohibit analysts from owning any securities of the companies they cover. CSFB also goes a step further and says that its reforms exceed regulatory requirements. For example: The bank prohibits discussions between analysts and bankers about unpublished research. Lynch of course has handled big jobs before. Perhaps his biggest, at the SEC, where he oversaw a staff of 700, was the prosecution of junk bond financier Michael Milken. At the SEC, Lynch also participated in significant initiatives in corporate disclosure, tender offers and proxy contests, and insider trading. As a former senior partner at New York’s Davis Polk & Wardwell, from 1989 to 2001, Lynch represented virtually all of the global investment banks. He received his law degree from Duke University School of Law in 1975.

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