SEC chief Mary Schapiro to leave in December

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Mary L. Schapiro announced on Monday that she will step down as chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission in mid-December, and President Obama announced that he would designate Elisse Walter, one of the SEC's Democratic commissioners, to replace her. It's unclear if Walter, who has served on the commission since July 2008, will stay on as chairman. People familiar with the administration's thinking expect the president will nominate a new SEC chief soon. The names of several potential Schapiro successors have surfaced, including Mary J. Miller, a senior Treasury Department official. But if Walter wants the top job, she would have to be re-nominated and reconfirmed before her term expires in December 2013.

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