Dennis P. Sheehan

Color portrait of Dennis P. Sheehan

Emeritus Professor of Finance, The Louis and Virginia Benzak Professor of Finance

Department Finance

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Dennis Sheehan joined the Smeal College of Business faculty in 1992 as the Louis and Virginia Benzak Professor of Finance. He previously taught at Purdue University, the University of Chicago, and the University of Rochester. Professor Sheehan is a graduate of Georgetown University and received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley. Professor Sheehan's research and teaching interests were in finance and statistics. His research was in corporate finance with papers on topics such as the extent and function of managerial stock ownership, the role of active shareholders in monitoring the firm, and the pricing of seasoned equity offerings by investment banks. His research was published in journals such as the Journal of Finance, the Journal of Financial Economics, and the Journal of Econometrics, and was also been written up in the Wall Street Journal and the Journal of Applied Corporate Finance. Dr. Sheehan helped establish the Executive MBA Program in the Smeal College. He served as Associate Dean of MBA Programs and Executive Education and as Faculty Director for the MBA Programs. He retired in 2017.


Security Issuance and Underwriting. Corporate Governance and Control. Financial Distress. Economics of Organization.


Ph D, Economics, University of California, Berkeley, 1981

AB, Economics, Georgetown University, 1973

Courses Taught

B A 531 – Introduction to Finance (3)
An examination of the techniques available to aid the financial manager in decision making.

B A 536 – Global Immersion (3)
Exploration of the opportunities and the challenges of doing business in another economic region.

B A 597A – Leadership and Decision Making (3)
In this course, we first look at the characteristics of the problems and opportunities faced by leaders. We then explore these decision making events from the perspective of the human cognition and behaviors used to deal with these decision characteristic

B A 596 – Individual Studies (Variable)
Creative projects, including nonthesis research, which are supervised on an individual basis and which fall outside the scope of formal courses.

B A 597I – Individual and Team-Based Leadership (1)
The main feature of this course is an off-site immersion into situations that require rapid decision-making and team based activities in a stressful or uncertain environment. For the Spring 2015 semester, two options for the immersion experience are being

B A 595 – Internship (Variable)
Supervised off-campus, nongroup instruction, including field experiences, practicums, or internships. Written and oral critique of activity required.

FIN 531 – Financial Management (3)
An intensive examination of techniques available to aid the financial manager in decision making.

FIN 405 – Advanced Financial Management (3)
An examination of the development and application of decision rules for major long-term financial and investment problems of the firm.

R M 399 – Foreign Studies (Variable)
Courses offered in foreign countries by individual or group instruction.

B A 597C – Global Immersion Independent Study (2)
Evaluation of the economic situation of Argentina. Analyze whether the economic model of President Kirchner will likely bring further economic progress to Argentina or stifle it. Of particular concern will be the recent increase in inflation and the gover

B A 528 – Business Simulation (variable)
A team-based course during which students will manage a simulated firm.

FIN 305M – Financial Management of the Business Enterprise (3)
Development of advanced practices of financial management and their application to decision making in a business firm.

FIN 597F – Empirical Market Microstructure (2)
Designed to do a practical, comprehensive course in corporate finance and strategy. Draws together the various topics in managerial finance and presents a unified, integrated view of the overall subject areas. Requires students to deal with case applicati

B A 517 – Communication Skills for Management (variable)
Development of communication skills required for management; audience awareness, style, individual and group presentations.

B A 597B – Advanced Communications (3)
The Global Immersion course provides the students with an opportunity to develop a global perspective by visiting a country outside the United States.

B A 597F – Marketing to Support Growth of Financial Services (4)
An experiential learning opportunity for students to explore an alternative business, intellectual, governmental, and cultural paradigm.

B A 597G – Negotiation (1)
Formal courses given on a topical or special interest subject which may be offered infrequently.

B A 598A – Business Simulation (1)
Run a large firm of your own in competition with your classmates.

FIN 563 – Financial Management Simulation and Corporate Interaction (2)
An immersion experience in financial decision-making through a simulation exercise and interaction with senior financial officers.

MKTG 597C – Marketing 2.0 (2)
Provide students with chance to synthesize what they are learning in the marketing portfolio with practicing & managing the marketing function of a simulated enterprise.

B A 597E – Sustainable Business Strategies (1)
Formal courses given on a topical or special interest subject which may be offered infrequently.


FIN 565 – Investment Management Portfolio Analysis Immersion (2)
An intensive familiarization with the Smeal College Trading Room in combina- tion with a visit to Wall Street trading rooms.

FIN 597A – Asset Pricing Theory (1)
Formal courses given on a topical or special interest subject which may be offered infrequently; several different topics may be taught in one year or term.

FIN 553 – Financial Modeling (1)
Develops technical financial modeling skills applying spreadsheets and simulation modeling software.

Selected Publications

Barclay M., Holderness C., Sheehan D. P., "Dividends and corporate shareholders." Review of Financial Studies, vol. 22, no. 6, 2009, pp. 2423-2455
Sheehan D. P., Holderness C., Barclay M., "“Private Placements and Managerial Entrenchment”." Journal of Corporate Finance, vol. 13, 2007
Field L. B., Sheehan D. P., "IPO Underpricing and Outside Blockholdings." Journal of Corporate Finance, vol. 10, no. 2, 2004, pp. 17


Financial Management, Associate Editor, July 2002 - December 2011