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Overview of Bachelor’s Degrees in the Financial Markets

Majors Overview April 30, 2014

Upon completion of their Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) in Banking and Finance or Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Finance, students may find a career involving financial markets. An understanding of market trends, statistical analysis, and financial statements will be provided in bachelor’s programs. Careers as personal investment advisors or financial analysts will be available to graduates of undergraduate degrees.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Programs in Finance

Those who aspire to work as business analysts or investment advisors would benefit by majoring in finance to prepare for entry-level careers in the financial markets. During the program, majors are taught about trends in the business industry and numerous investment strategies for different market conditions. Coursework typically includes monetary policy, contracts, real estate, financial instruments, insurance and banking.

Students are also imparted the skills in statistics and advanced mathematics needed for predicting market trends, analyzing portfolios and determining the type of returns or risks involved in investment decisions. Graduates can expect to become adept at the application of these skills and meeting of regulatory compliance requirements, but before they are allowed to provide investment advice, they need to obtain the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) credential.

Coursework

Coursework is devised to make students adept at analyzing statements of companies involved in financial market trading. Coursework also covers different kinds of financial instruments, such as stocks and bonds. Students are taught about evaluating trends in exchange data, corporate earnings and financial ratings of commercial paper, aimed at developing an investment strategy. In keeping with this, business coursework covers topic areas such as:

•Financial policy
•Insurance principles
•Securities regulations
•International markets
•Capital gains taxation
•Real estate investment
•Banking

Job and Wage Outlook

A job growth rate of 32% has been predicted for personal financial advisors during the decade between 2010 and 2020 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)). In 2012, personal financial advisors earned an average annual wage of $67,520.

Bachelor of Business Administration Degree Programs in Banking and Finance

Students enrolled in a Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) degree program in Banking and Finance are taught about banking, business management and accounting, in the financial markets. Students can also choose majors in entrepreneurship and human resource management. No matter what concentration they choose, students are taught ways of analyzing business trends and describing complex investment concepts in terms understandable by laymen. Graduates in the field also become adept at applying statistical analysis and basic accounting principles to the development of long- and short-term strategies in the financial markets.

Coursework

Coursework commonly covers statistical analysis, credit, monetary policy and macroeconomic and microeconomic principles. Presentation or writing courses may also have to be taken by students. Coursework may otherwise include general subjects such as:

•Financial strategy
•Market regulation
•International investment
•Ethics

Job and Wage Outlook

In 2012, business analysts earned an average annual wage of $76,950 (BLS). A job growth rate of 19% has been predicted for business analysts during the decade from 2012 to 2022.

Continuing Education

Earning a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) with a concentration in finance can prepare students for executive and management positions in financial institutions. It can take between two and three years to complete this degree, which has a specific focus on investments, strategies, trends and advanced business ideas. Licensure from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority may not be mandatory for professionals involved in financial business purchases; however, it may be compulsory for those involved in the sale of securities, with one or more licenses needed, depending on their area of specialization.

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