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Pepperdine | Graziadio Business School
Clemens Kownatzki, PhD Practitioner Faculty in Finance

Clemens Kownatzki, PhD

Assistant Professor of Finance
Associate Dean‚ Full-Time Programs
Graziadio Business School


Clemens Kownatzki has been an executive in the financial services industry for well over two decades.  His experience ranges from management positions in brokerage and treasury operations to advising corporate as well as retail clients with a focus on managing their risk effectively.  He has also been an active investor in options and derivatives markets.  Having lived and worked in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the U.S., his investments range from equity to international capital and currency markets. 

In 2010, he joined Pepperdine University and is currently Assistant Professor of Finance. In 2020, he became the Department Chair of Accounting, Finance and Real Estate.  During his tenure, he was Academic Director of the MS Applied Finance program from 2017-2019. In 2016, he received a prestigious research grant from the Chicago Mercantile Group Foundation. Dr. Kownatzki’s primary research interest focuses on the important question of how risk and market volatility affects investment returns.

He also authored the book Money Music 101, which is the foundation for a personal finance class at LA College of Music.

Dr. Kownatzki earned his PhD in Economics and Management from Claremont Graduate University. He also holds an MBA degree from the Pepperdine Graziadio Business School.


  • PhD, Claremont Graduate University, 2015.
    Major: Finance / Economics and Management
    Supporting Areas of Emphasis: Finance
    Dissertation Title: Examination of implied volatility as a proxy for financial risk

  • MBA, Pepperdine Graziadio Business School, 2000.
    Major: Presidents and Key Executives


  • Kownatzki, C., Putnam, B., & Yu, A. (2021). Case study of event risk management with options strangles and straddles. Review of Financial Economics, rfe.1143. https://doi.org/10.1002/rfe.1143
  • Efremidze, L., Stanley, D. J., & Kownatzki, C. (2021). Entropy trading strategies reveal inefficiencies in Japanese stock market. International Review of Economics & Finance, 75, 464–477. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iref.2021.04.021
  • Harjoto, M. A., Rossi, F., Lee, R., & Kownatzki, C. (2021). COVID-19: Risk-adjusted portfolio returns of emerging and developed equity markets. Journal of Risk Management in Financial Institutions, 14(1).
  • Kownatzki, C., & Sabouni, H. (2019). Option strangles: An analysis of selling equity insurance. American Journal of Management, 19(4), 83–103
  • Kownatzki, C., & Kotite, F. (2018). In Search of a Better Volatility. Journal of Accounting and Finance, 18(5). https://doi.org/10.33423/jaf.v18i5.33
  • Kownatzki, C. (2016). How Good is the VIX as a Predictor of Market Risk. Journal of Accounting and Finance, 16(6)(2016), 39–60.
  • Kownatzki, C. E. (Principal), Research Grant: "In Search of a Better Volatility"," Sponsored by CME Group Foundation, (May 1, 2016 - April 30, 2017).
  • Kownatzki, C. (2015). Examination of implied volatility as a proxy for financial risk. Ann Arbor: ProQuest Dissertations Publishing.
  • Kownatzki, C. E. (2011). Money Music 101 (1st ed., pp. 200).


  • FINC 614
  • FINC 625
  • FINC 626
  • FINC 627
  • FINC 634
  • FINC 640
  • PGBS 698
  • MBAA 663
  • MBAA 673