WASHINGTON - The confirmation hearing for Arthur Levitt Jr., President Clinton's nominee for chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, is scheduled for July 13 by the Senate Banking Committee, a committee aide said yesterday.
Levitt, former chairman of the American Stock Exchange, was nominated April 28 to succeed Richard Breeden, who resigned as chairman this spring.
Levitt led the exchange from 1978 to 1989, and has since headed Levitt Media Co., a New York publications firm. He is also the majority owner of Roll Call, a newspaper that covers Congress - particularly individual Senators and congressmen, their staffs, and the various congressional committees and their staffs.
From 1969 to 1978, Levitt was president and director of Shearson Hayden Stone Inc., now Lehmann Brothers. From 1959 to 1962, he was executive vice president and director of Oppenheimer Industries.
Levitt is not expected to face opposition from the Senate Banking Committee, headed by Sen. Donald Riegle Jr., D-Mich. There had been early rumblings that over-the-counter markets such as the National Association of Securities Dealers were concerned Levitt would favor the big stock exchanges, given his background at the American Stock Exchange.
Levitt is no stranger to municipal finance. His father, Arthur Levitt Sr., was New York State comptroller for a number of years. And Levitt Jr. chairs the New York City Economic Development Corp.
Levitt's confirmation would give Democrats a majority on the five-member panel. Commissioner Richard Roberts is a Democrat, acting chairwoman Mary Schapiro is an Independent, and J. Carter Beese Jr. is a Republican.
The Democrats' majority is likely to grow since the administration is expected to fill the fifth commissioner's post shortly.