Current accounting research uses the Zmijewski (1984) and Ohlson (1980) bankruptcy prediction models as proxies for financial distress/bankruptcy. Such use assumes that the models' predictive powers transcend to time periods, industries, and financial conditions outside of those used to originally develop the models. The objective of this paper is to address whether the construct validity of the financial distress/bankruptcy proxies (based on the original models) used in those recent studies is possibly open to question. The evidence provided in this study suggests that researchers who use the Zmijewski and Ohlson models using recent data should re-estimate the models' coefficients to improve the predictive accuracy of the models.
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