The present study is an assessment of the rate and severity of tobacco consumption in outpatients with schizophrenia, and the determinants of smoking behaviour. Sixty-four patients, assessed by the Item Group Checklist section of the SCAN interview and fitting DSM-IV criteria, were evaluated with CGI and the PANSS scales. In addition, they completed STAI (Spielberger), EPQ (Eysenck), and TPQ (Cloninger) questionnaires. Tobacco dependence was assessed by the Fagerström test. One hundred and thirty-seven consecutive outpatients were psychiatric controls. Forty-one out of 64 patients with schizophrenia (64.1%) were current smokers, this rate being significantly higher than in other psychiatric patients and general population. The severity of cigarette consumption in smokers was greater (mean of 22.4 cigarettes/day) than in the general population, but it was not different from that of other psychiatric patients. For patients with schizophrenia, no one variable (except male sex) was different between smokers and non-smokers, but the number of cigarettes/day correlated with state anxiety, trait anxiety, and neuroticism. In the multivariate analysis, the only variable that remained significant was neuroticism. The relationship between clinical features and severity of smoking behaviour may be linked to non-specific variables such as neuroticism and anxiety, but not to psychotic symptoms.