Financial Management Editorial Philosophy

The following philosophy guides Co-Editors Michael Goldstein of Babson College, Kathleen Kahle of the University of Arizona, and Shawn Thomas of the University of Pittsburgh.

Mission of the journal

Financial Management, FMA's flagship quarterly journal, publishes high-quality, peer-reviewed research in all established and emerging areas of financial economics.  Financial Management seeks to inform academics and industry professionals on important topics in finance.

What we contribute relative to other journals

Many finance journals publish high-quality, high-impact research on specific subfields of finance. However, Financial Management (FM) is a general-interest journal and publishes papers in all areas of finance. FM is also unique in that it seeks to publish original academic research that appeals to practitioners as well as to academics. In recent years, the annual number of submissions to FM has risen substantially to more than 300, while the acceptance rate has remained less than 10%.

The Financial Management Association International (FMA), for which Financial Management is the flagship journal, is an organization of academics, practitioners, and students, with greater than 3,000 members from around the world. FMA holds annual conferences in Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America, and the Middle East. However, FM is often perceived, especially outside the U.S., as a U.S.-centric journal. In line with the international mission of the FMA, Financial Management is open to submissions from any author, at any stage of their career, and from anywhere around the globe. We have chosen geographically diverse Associate Editors to help us further establish FM as a global journal.

The brand of FM is that “it is a finance journal that publishes academic articles that people actually read.” Thus, the articles (a) should be directly relevant and topical to finance academics and industry professionals, (b) should be original with more weight placed on new ideas and less weight on trivial robustness tests, (c) should provoke and further debate in the field, (d) should cover all finance areas, including emerging areas of interest, and (e) should be based on theory or data from anywhere in the world where an interesting new financial issue emerges. We strive to be recognized for timely and helpful reviews that will enable authors to significantly improve their papers, even if their papers are not ultimately accepted in the journal.

What the editors look for in an Associate Editor

At FM, we view Associate Editors (AEs), along with the Advisory Editors who participate in the formulation and evaluation of strategy, as partners in the process. We recognize that we expect a great deal of effort on the part of AEs in the form of in-depth evaluations for papers sent to them to referee. Consequently, in selecting AEs, we look for colleagues who have supported the journal’s activities in the past, who bring expertise and familiarity to areas not covered by the co-editors, and who share a commitment to providing a review process that identifies and supports work with great potential.

What the editors look for in a referee

Central to our mission is providing feedback to authors and helping them to improve papers that could impact subsequent research or industry practice. The referees play a central role. Our goal is to use a diverse set of referees who are experts in the area, who respond in a timely fashion, and who provide helpful feedback to authors. We also expect reviewers to be unbiased, willing to address both technical quality and impact, and communicate their concerns effectively. The editors may, in some situations, seek a second reviewer.  We believe that using a diverse set of referees brings fresh perspectives to research and improves the visibility of FM.

Conflicts of Interest

New submissions by the co-editors are not permitted. Co-editors will not handle submissions from authors at the same institution, current or recent past co-authors, former PhD students for whom a co-editor was the primary advisor, former PhD advisors, close friends, relatives, or papers that criticize or closely compete with a co-editor's work. Any direct or indirect financial interest related to a submission is also considered a conflict of interest. This conflict of interest policy also applies to special issues.

Co-editors will occasionally solicit papers they believe would be of benefit to the journal. Solicited papers will go through the usual refereeing process.

Invitation letters to referees will include the following wording. “If you have any potential conflict of interest in reviewing this submission, then please declare it to the co-editor. Such conflicts may include but are not limited to papers criticizing or closely competing with your own papers, papers by your PhD students, colleagues, or coauthors, or papers by those with whom you have a close personal friendship or conflict. Acceptance of this review request is taken as a formal acknowledgement that no conflict exists.”

The Review Process

Desk Rejections

In order to provide timely feedback to authors and to efficiently utilize the referees who support the journal, one or more of the three co-editors will initially review submissions before they are sent to a referee. If the co-editors conclude that a submission does not fit with the overall objectives of the journal or has little chance of publication, then the submission will be rejected at that time. In this case, the journal will refund all but $100 of the submission fee.

Articles Previously Reviewed

Not surprisingly, a referee selected for a submission sometimes will have reviewed the submission for another journal. Our policy is to not let this fact bias the process toward rejection. At the same time, we view the information in the prior review as valuable, and we certainly choose reviewers because we respect their judgment.  Our policy when so informed by a reviewer is to ascertain whether the paper has, in fact, been updated.  Lack of any change to the manuscript is viewed negatively, and we will ask if the reviewer wishes to share the prior review and/or comment on any changes. 

Coercive Citations

The co-editors commit not to engage in coercive citation practices at FM. Coercive citations result when editors request authors cite specific papers not because the authors’ submissions are lacking in attribution but because the editors seek to add citations to their journal thereby increasing measured journal impact factors. While the co-editors retain discretion to suggest that authors cite specific papers, we will do so only when scientifically appropriate and without regard to the journal where the cited paper is published.

Data and Code Sharing Policy 

This policy applies to all initial submissions received after March 1, 2023.

  1. Code Sharing: Following a paper’s acceptance for publication in FM, the authors are required to provide the programs needed to replicate any empirical analysis, simulations, numerical computations, or experimental work in the paper. The programs will be made available on the Financial Management Dataverse ( at the time the paper is published online.
  2. Data Sharing: Authors are encouraged to provide the data along with the programs. However, if the authors are restricted from providing the data because of copyright or confidentiality agreements, then they are required to include a pseudo-data set that illustrates the format of the files read by the programs so that users can better understand the code.
  3. Exceptions: Exceptions to this policy are possible. However, authors must request such exceptions when they first submit their paper to FM. Decisions on such exception requests will be made by the editor handling the submission. Approved exceptions will be noted in the published paper.
  4. Code Details: Authors should make a good faith effort to ensure their code can be understood by trained users, i.e., the code should include comments as needed. Similarly, details should be provided about the software packages, programing languages, data formats, and data sources. Beyond that, authors are not expected to aid users of the code.
  5. Code Usage: Those downloading the data and code files will acknowledge that the programs are only to be used for academic research. Any other use will require explicit permission from all the authors of the published paper and other originators of the code (if such other originators exist). Academic researchers using any part of the code in their own work are required to acknowledge the origin of the code.

Reviewer Confidentiality

The co-editors of FM commit to never publicly disclose data that could reveal individual referees’ confidential recommendations, or any other confidential information about the editorial process.

Approved November 2022.