Faculty & Research

Abbie J. Smith

Boris and Irene Stern Distinguished Service Professor of Accounting

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5807 South Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637

Abbie J. Smith's research on corporate governance and transparency was stimulated by service on corporate and mutual fund boards and the heightened interest in these issues among accounting policymakers, corporate officers and directors, auditors, analysts, and investors resulting from the wave of corporate accounting scandals that began with Enron. Her article "Does Analyst Following Increase Upon the Restriction of Insider Trading?" with Robert Bushman and Joseph Piotroski, was nominated for a 2005 Smith Breeden Prize. She also has received a Marvin Bower Fellowship from the Harvard Business School, a McKinsey Award for Excellence in Teaching, and grants from the Accounting Research Center and Fama Miller Center at Booth. .

Smith has experience as a corporate director and has served on audit, finance, and compensation committees. She feels this has given her an inside perspective on the determinants of corporate investment, restructuring, financing, as well as reporting behavior and their implications for firms' current and future performance. This perspective heavily influences her approach to teaching students how to use financial statements and related information to identify the priorities and objectives of corporate officers and directors; to evaluate a firm's strategy, competitive position, and performance; to assess business, financial, and financial reporting risks; to predict a firm's future performance; and to value a firm's equity.

She says her service as a mutual fund director "has given me the opportunity to see close up a successful interplay between academic finance research on equity risk and returns and its practical application in equity investment. This has influenced how I think about - and teach - the assessment of equity risk and value."

Smith is a member of the board of directors of Ryder System, Inc, HNI Corporation, Dimensional Funds, and Chicago-based UBS Funds.

She earned a bachelor's degree in 1975, an MBA in accounting and finance in 1979, and a PhD in accounting in 1981 from Cornell University. She joined the Chicago Booth faculty in 1980. Smith enjoys corporate and mutual fund board work, yoga, running, theater, music, gardening, and travel.


Other Interests

Jogging, biking, yoga, music, travel, and songwriting.


Research Activities

Corporate governance and transparency; performance measurement; corporate restructuring; financial accounting information; flows of information to capital markets; and securities prices.

With R. Bushman and R. Wittenberg-Moerman, “Price Discovery and Dissemination of Private Information by Loan Syndicate Participants,” Journal of Accounting Research (2010).

With R. Bushman and J. Piotroski, "What Determines Corporate Transparency?," Journal of Accounting Research - Supplement (2004).

With R. Bushman and J. Piotroski, "Does Analyst Following Increase Upon the Restriction of Insider Trading?," Journal of Finance (2005).

With R. Bushman, Q. Chen, and E. Engel, "Financial Accounting Information, Organizational Complexity, and Corporate Governance Systems," Journal of Accounting and Economics (2004).

With R. Bushman, "Financial Accounting Information and Corporate Governance," Journal of Accounting and Economics (2001).

Davidson, Robert, Aiyesha Dey, and Abbie Smith. "Executives' “off-the-job” behavior, corporate culture, and financial reporting risk." Journal of Financial Economics (2013).

Executives' Legal Records, Lavish Lifestyles, and Insider Trading Activities (working paper).

CEO Materialism and Corporate Social Responsibility (working paper).

For a listing of research publications please visit ’s university library listing page.