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Degree Overview: Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Degree in Financial Risk Management

Majors Overview May 3, 2015

Get information about Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree programs in Financial Risk Management and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Degree Programs in Financial Risk Management

Students enrolled in a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) in Finance program are ready to manage financial risk for corporate organizations. These professionals are also responsible for overseeing lending arrangements, strategic planning, asset disposition and acquisition, and financial planning.

Schools also offer other concentrations, such as insurance and risk management. These programs are devised to help in developing students’ strategic thinking and analytical skills in corporate finance. The emphasis of core coursework is on general managerial skills, while focused courses thoroughly develop skills in financial management. Schools offer M.B.A. programs in various formats, which range from classroom-based lectures to fully online courses; evening and weekend classes are offered by many schools to facilitate working professionals.

Education Requirements

Stringent admission criteria typically require incoming students to have a background in auditing, accounting, or mathematics or to bring other relevant work experience to the table. Baccalaureate studies in business administration or a related field may be a requirement. Students are also expected to have strong strategic thinking and quantitative skills.


An M.B.A. program in finance features thorough financial training and classes in management principles. Students become adept at forecasting and controlling risk, apart from managing investments. Core coursework may include subject areas such as the following:

•Process improvement
•Managing risk
•Corporate finance
•Evaluating securities
•Financial theory
•Investment analysis
•Financial accounting
•Mergers and acquisitions
•Business forecasting

Career Choices

Program graduates can choose from a wide array of roles within the corporate world, working with employers such as insurance carriers, commercial and investment banks, and financial strategic consultants. They can choose from popular career options such as:

•Chief financial officer
•Investment analyst
•Financial analyst
•Financial planner
•Risk manager

Job and Wage Outlook

In 2014, financial planners brought in an average annual wage of $57,484; wage levels ranged between $34,740 and $112,213 per annum. In 2013, wages for these professionals ranged between $48,100 and $152,420 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a job growth of 27% has been predicted for the profession (BLS).

While chief executives, including chief financial officers, brought home an average annual wage of $171,610, risk management specialists banked $62,510 on average per annum (BLS). In 2014, investment analysts brought in between $41,982 and $105,943 annually, with a yearly average wage pegged at $59,472.

Continuing Education Choices

Those who complete the program may seek continuing education by earning certification as a financial risk manager (FRM) by passing the FRM certification exam sponsored by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). Students with two years of professional experience can take the GARP exam, which covers a wide array of risk management topics, including quantitative analysis, general risk management concepts, valuation and risk models, and financial markets and products. Once they complete the exam, they gain the FRM credential, whereby they can boost their career prospects within the financial risk management field.

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