Journal of Financial Economics
An Increase in Submission Fees

Effective: January 21, 2012

G. William Schwert
Managing Editor, Journal of Financial Economics
The last time the JFE increased its submission fees was in 2004. Now, eight years later, the number of submissions per year has grown from 700 to over 1,150 (an increase of 65%), and the CPI has increased by 19 percent. Accordingly, I have decided to increase the submission fee for personal subscribers to the Journal to $600 (this does not include people who work at an institution that has an institutional subscription).

The fee for authors who are not personal subscribers will be $650 (thus making the effective price of a personal subscription about $50 if you submit one paper per year, and zero dollars or negative if you submit more than one paper per year).

As always, fees on the last submission are refunded for accepted papers. Resubmissions are generally required to pay another fee unless the editor explicitly waives this requirement. Submission fees are also refunded when, in the editor's judgment, the delay in providing a report and decision letter is abnormally long. Submission fees involved in disputes between authors and referees will also be adjusted (see the dispute web page for more information).

As always, the scarcest resource for the Journal is the supply of refereeing talent we depend on to provide service to authors. For the years 2010-2011, more than 600 indivuduals provided refereeing services to the JFE , and the median turnaround time between submission and receipt of a decision was 29 days. Since its inception, the JFE has prided itself on using economic incentives to help manage the business of the Journal. As you can see from Figs. 1 and 2 below, in recent years turnaround times have held steady and even declined while the number of papers reviewed and published have risen. I hope you understand that increasing submission fees is a necessary step to deal with the increasing burden on our referees.

Because increased submission fees allow it, I am going to increase the payments we make to referees who return their reports within our desired time period. I am also going to continue our practice of making desk rejection decisions in cases where I think the paper is highly likely to be rejected, even if the analysis in the paper is assumed to be "correct" (often the reason for this decision is that the topic of the paper is not of sufficiently broad interest to warrant publication in the JFE ). If I make this quick rejection decision, all but $100 of the submission fee will be refunded. The submitting author will receive no referee's report and there will be no right of appeal. My goal is to have fewer referees' reports that merely say "this paper is OK, but just not interesting/broad enough for the JFE ." This outcome is expensive for authors, referees, and editors, and the feedback received by authors typically does not improve their papers very much.

Fig. 1. Submissions to the Journal of Financial Economics during the prior 12 months (left-axis) and submission fees for subscribers to the JFE , expressed in terms of August 1973 dollars, using the Consumer Price Index (right-axis).

Fig. 2. Rejection rate for submissions to the Journal of Financial Economics during the prior 12 (left-axis) and median turnaround time in days (right-axis) during the prior 12 months.

Electronic Submissions

The JFE will continue to require that submissions be in the form of electronic Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF documents. Instructions for how to produce a document that disguises the identity of the author from the potential referee are available on the JFE webpage. This is important since the JFE has always used a double-blind review process (the author and the referee are not supposed to know the identity of each other).


Journal of Financial Economics

Simon Business School
University of Rochester
Rochester, New York 14627
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