Faculty Directory

Kenneth R. French

Roth Family Distinguished Professor of Finance



DegreePhD, University of Rochester, 1983; MS, University of Rochester, 1981; MBA, University of Rochester, 1978; BS, Lehigh University, 1975

AREAS OF EXPERTISEPortfolio theory, asset pricing, dividend policy, capital structure

Current Research Topics

  • Risk and return in domestic and international financial markets,
  • Cost of capital
  • Financial regulation
  • Capital structure

Selected Publications

  • With the Squam Lake Group, The Squam Lake Report: Fixing the Financial System, Princeton University Press, 2010
  • With E. Fama, "Luck versus Skill in the Cross Section of Mutual Fund Returns," Journal of Finance, 2010
  • "The Cost of Active Investing," Journal of Finance, 2008
  • With E. Fama, "Disagreements, Tastes, and Asset Pricing," Journal of Financial Economics, 2006
  • With E. Fama, "Disappearing Dividends: Changing Firm Characteristics or Lower Propensity to Pay?", Journal of Financial Economics, 2001
  • With E. Fama, "Taxes, Financing Decisions, and Firm Value," Journal of Finance, 1998
  • With E. Fama, "Common Risk Factors in the Returns on Stocks and Bonds," Journal of Financial Economics, 1993
  • With J. Poterba, "Investor Diversification and International Equity Markets," American Economic Review, 1991
  • With E. Fama, "Dividend Yields and Expected Stock Returns," Journal of Financial Economics, 1988

Working Papers

  • With E. Fama, "The Pecking Order, Opportunistic Financing, and the Mean Reversion of Leverage"
  • With E. Fama, "Size, Value, and Momentum in International Stock Returns"

Professional Activities

Academic positions

  • Tuck School of Business, 2001–present
  • NTU Professor of Finance, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1998–2001
  • Managing Director, International Center for Finance, Yale School of Management, 1994–98
  • Edwin J. Beinecke Professor of Management Studies and Finance, Yale University, 1994–98
  • David T. McLaughlin Visiting Professor of Finance, Tuck School of Business, 1993–94
  • Leo Melamed Professor of Finance, 1991–94, Director, Center for Research in Security Prices, 1989–94, Chicago Mercantile Exchange Professor of Finance, 1989–91, Professor of Finance, 1987–89, Associate Professor, 1985–87, Assistant Professor, 1983–85, The University of Chicago
  • Research Fellow, Foundation for Research in Economics and Education, University of California, Los Angeles, 1982–83

Nonacademic positions

  • Machine Design Engineer, Eastman Kodak Co., 1975–77

Board memberships

  • Board of Directors, Dimensional Fund Advisors, 2006–present; Board of Overseers, International Rescue Committee, 2005–present
  • Board of Governors, The Smile Train, 2008–11; President, 2007–08, Director, 1991–94, 2003–09, American Finance Association

Editorial positions

  • Advisory Editor, Journal of Financial Economics, Journal of Banking and Finance

Research & Teaching Summary

Through influential empirical studies, Kenneth French has established himself as a leading thinker in corporate finance and financial markets. He has served as director and president of the American Finance Association and is a board member and director of investment policy of Dimensional Fund Advisors. Professor French teaches the elective course Investments.

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