Curriculum

Global Macro and Asian Markets (2 credits)

This course introduces students to macroeconomic forces that affect global and Asian financial markets. Students will discuss various global macroeconomic concepts, the influences of global finance on long-run economic growth, and the structure/size of foreign exchange markets. This course will also cover recent developments in global/Asian financial markets, macroeconomics in a post-crisis world, and exchange rates.

Foundations of Corporate Finance (2 credits)

The aim of the course is to provide students with a comprehensive overview of the financing and investment decisions made by firms. It covers capital budgeting, dividend policy, financing policy and managerial incentives. 

Foundations of Investments (2 credits)

This course provides an introduction to modern asset pricing theory. We begin by briefly reviewing portfolio theory. We then move on to discussing current determinants of asset prices such as cash risk and liquidity. One of the course's goals is to apply asset pricing theories to investment decision-making. A second goal is to prepare students for upcoming courses. A third goal is to build a fundamental knowledge of fixed income and derivatives products.

Asset Allocation (1 credit)

The course builds on Foundations of Investments to provide students with tools and knowledge in global asset allocation. Topics include major investable markets and players, asset allocation, performance evaluation, strategies and performance of hedge funds, and factor models.

Derivatives Markets (2 credits)

This is a course in derivatives markets: structure, valuation and strategies. It builds on the content of Foundations of Investments and combines theory, empirical findings and practical applications. The main applications include the equities, foreign exchange and commodities markets. The key derivatives instruments discussed include forwards, futures and options. Cases and examples include the 1987 crash, LTCM, Metallgesellschaft, Amaranth, etc.

Fixed Income Instruments and Markets (2 credits)

The course addresses fixed income financial instruments and their derivatives, covering the types of debt instruments, interest rate structures and building the yield curve, the valuation of debt securities, debt default and related topics. There is also consideration of fixed income instruments in portfolio strategies, as well as the role of financial structures, options and derivatives such as credit default swaps.

Applied Corporate Finance and Valuation (2 credits)

This course focuses on the valuation of companies and the creation of shareholder value by looking at the interplay of corporate strategy and finance. The course exposes participants to valuation frameworks that can readily be applied to improve business and strategic decision-making.

Behavioral Finance (1 credit)

A growing strand of research suggests that the standard economic paradigm—rational investors in an efficient market—does not adequately describe behavior in financial markets. Behavioral finance combines the latest findings of behavioral and cognitive psychological theory with conventional economics and finance to provide alternative explanations of financial market behavior. We will examine how psychology of decision making under conditions of risk and uncertainty affects the traditional paradigm, while paying attention to practical applications for portfolio and investment management.

Financial Markets and Corporate Finance in China (2 credits)

This course provides an overview of China's financial markets, the reform of financial institutions and corporate risk management. Students will gain an understanding of the recent developments in financial services and corporate practices in China.

Risk Management in Financial Institutions (2 credits)

The course covers state-of-the-art and new developments in major areas of risk management in financial institutions and business firms in general - credit risk, market risk, liquidity risk, operational risk, sovereign risk, strategic risk, and reputational risk. Emphasis is placed on risk integration.

FinTech (1 credit)

The course will introduce the current state of FinTech and discuss how financial institutions and their stakeholders are being affected by new technologies. Students will understand how traditional business models are being impacted by the application of new technologies and how financial innovation impacts money and payment systems. The course offers a combination of case studies, lectures, and guest speaker sessions, and will identify current trends and opportunities within the FinTech ecosystem.

Topics in Financial Markets and Governance (1 credit)

A Capstone module covering advanced topics in finance, the selection of which will depend on market developments and students' interests. The course builds on material covered in the other courses in the program, and is taught at the research-driven frontier.

Integrative Project Presentation (4 credits)

The aim of the project is to enable students to apply what they have learned in each course unit and to draw on their practical experience in the global banking and financial markets. Students work in groups on a team project throughout the year that culminates with a presentation to a panel of faculty.

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The MSGF curriculum is being regularly reviewed and revamped to ensure our content is relevant and up-to-date.  In recent years we have added two new courses in FinTech and Behavioral Finance.

From Class of 2018 onward, we will have a total of 12 taught courses and a Group Integrative Project as follows: