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Mahnaz Mahdavi

Professor of Economics; Department of Economics Chair; Faculty Director of the Global Finance Concentration

Mahnaz Mahdavi


10 Prospect Street #102


Mahnaz Mahdavi is professor of economics and the faculty director of the Global Financial Institutions Concentration. She received her doctorate in economics from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and has been teaching courses on topics related to finance and international finance. She was the 2008 Distinguished Professor of the Year and one of the inaugural recipients of the Sherrerd Teaching Award in 2004. She was a teaching fellow at the University of Michigan and a faculty contributor to the Women’s Executive Education program at Smith College.

Her scholarly work has focused on the areas of exchange rate determination, the behavior of stock markets in the United States and emerging markets, and most recently, the economics of financial literacy. She has given numerous public lectures on topics related to global finance, debt and financial crises, and on measuring the degree of educated women’s financial knowledge and its role in financial decisions and behavior.

Mahdavi is a member of the American Economic Association, Academy of International Business, and the International Trade and Finance Association. She was the Commonwealth of Massachusetts appointed delegate to the National Saving Summit and served on the advisory boards of the US Pacific Foundation, Akamai Initiative, the Institute for Global Finance Research and Management (INGRAM) and Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton. She was the founding director of Smith’s Center for Women and Financial Independence (WFI) in 2001 and served as the Ann F. Kaplan ’67 faculty director of WFI until 2017.

Selected Scholarly Work

Mahdavi, M, R. Heavlow, and N. Horton, “An empirical Analysis of Role of Financial Confidence and Competence in Financial Behavior,” Under revision, 2017.

Mahdavi, M. and N. Horton (2014), “Educated Women’s Financial Knowledge: Room for Improvement,” Journal of Consumer Affairs 48: 403-417.

Mahdavi, M. (2004), “A Comparison of International Interest Rate Processes Under No-Arbitrage Condition,” The Global Finance Journal 8(3): 303-318.

Mahdavi, M. (2004), “Risk-Adjusted Return When Returns Are Not Normally Distributed: Adjusted Sharpe Ratio,” Journal of Alternative Investments 6(4): 47-57.

Salazar, B., H. Kazemi and M. Mahdavi. (2004). Estimates of the Short-Term Rate Process in an Arbitrage-Free Framework. The International Journal of Theoretical and Applied Finance 6(5): 577-591.

Mahdavi, M. (1997). A Bayesian Approach to Foreign Exchange Forecasting. Global Finance Journal 8(1): 15-31.


Office Hours

Spring 2024
Wednesday 10:30 a.m.–noon
Thursday 2:30–3:30 p.m.


Ph.D., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
B.A. of Finance, N.I.O.C.