With the resurgence of opportunities in the financial arena, more people are looking at advanced degrees and wondering what types of jobs are available with a Master's in Finance? Sometimes confusion arises over the difference between an MBA and a Master's Degree in Finance. Although the degrees are similar, the MBA leads to a generalist education (for CPAs for example) while the finance specialty allows graduates to specialize in markets and investing among other finance areas.
What are the Advantages to a Master's in Finance degree?
Bloomberg Business says length of completion time is a major asset. While MBA programs take two-to-three years, students can earn a Master's in Finance in just one year. That means it is more affordable. Beginning salaries tend to be lower for people with a finance degree, but that is partially because there is no work experience required to apply to the programs. MBA applicants usually must have five to seven years of work experience before entering the degree path. Financial positions are changing, however, and many professionals with MBAs are going back to school to get a Master's in Finance as well to hedge their bets.
What Jobs are Available?
The types of jobs available with a Master's in Finance are usually in investments or in financial management or analysis. A partial listing of these opportunities includes:
Commercial Banking: Careers in commercial banking allow professionals to work in accountancy, financial management, commodities, sales of financial services and financial and credit analysis. According to Forbes, the mid-career median salary for these professionals is $119,000 and the job outlook is 18.6 per cent.
Financial Planning: Planners do not have to be certified to advise individuals or corporations unless they sell securities and bonds. Still, certification leading to CFAs and CFPs add to the attractiveness of a resume. Licensure may be required, though. Financial Planners have a median salary of $74,000.
Insurance Specialists: These professionals work in risk management as underwriters, sales representatives, asset managers or actuaries. Salaries usually are in the $70,000 range.
Investment Banking: These people assist governments and corporations issue securities. They also help with corporate investment portfolios that help companies build passive income that sustains operations. Median salaries are $46,269 to $76,985.
Financial Analysis: These professionals keep an eye on the markets, studying trends and political situations including changing government regulations, to help individuals choose investments. They work with banks and pension funds, mutual funds, insurance companies and other businesses. The median salary is $74,000.
Financial Managers: These are corporate CFOs and treasurers. The median salary for these positions is $66,496 to $165.000.
Brokers: These are finance professionals who buy and sell bonds and commodities (corn, oil and gold). The median salary is $70,000.
Related Resource: Academic Program Accreditation
While people with an MBA may be involved in some of the same areas as those with a Master's in Finance, there is more opportunity to specialize with the finance concentration. People considering careers in the finance arena should have strong skills in math, be detail oriented, expert at critical thinking and good communicators. With these assets, there are many types of jobs available with a Master's in Finance.