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December 3, 2013

Big Ideas: Stanislava Nikolova

Dr. Stanislava Nikolova
Dr. Stanislava (Stas) Nikolova, assistant professor of finance, was recently awarded the 2013 Economic Research Award by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). She is the second recipient of the award.
Nikolova joined the College of Business Administration this fall and brings a unique background of academic research and teaching, combined with five years professional experience at the SEC. She is primarily interested in fixed income securities which include corporate bonds, municipal bonds and asset-backed securities.
“My paper, ‘Momentum in Corporate Bond Returns,’ was published in the Review of Financial Studies earlier this year,” she said. “The award was given both for that article and for coordinating research efforts at the SEC.”
The research documented how investment strategies in the bond market could produce abnormal returns, as previous research had suggested it would not work. By using statistics from the largest corporate bond database and including junk bonds in their analysis, they were able to produce their groundbreaking results.
Stas Nikolova

Nikolova talks with senior Val Brinkley at CBA

She was also lauded at the award ceremony for her ability to mentor other economists in their research and for making the SEC an even friendlier environment to conduct research.
“I’m very interested in financial regulation,” she explained. “When I joined the SEC in 2008, the timing couldn’t have been more appropriate for my area of research, because that was when the bottom dropped out of the market.”
Nikolova, who received her Ph.D. from the University of Florida and previously taught at George Mason University near Washington, D.C., believes her professional experience is integral to her research, and will bring a real-world outlook to the classroom when she begins teaching in the spring.
“I like my classes to be very interactive,” she said. “I bring a unique perspective to students, because I will be teaching investments and my experience at the SEC will be something I can share with them.”
She is impressed with the drive at CBA to commit the resources to back up the high demand for quality research.
“The expectations are high, but they provide the necessary resources to get things done,” she said.