What Types of Jobs and Salaries Are Available With a Master’s in Finance?

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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. 

But how many jobs are available in finance? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in the financial field is expected to grow 15 percent by 2029 — which translates to over 700,000 added jobs to the marketplace. By pursuing an advanced degree, you can earn a masters in finance salary by pursuing lucrative positions such as financial management. In this position, you can earn a median salary of $134,180.

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The Types of Jobs Available With a Master’s in Finance

As you learn more about available jobs in finance if you pursue a master’s,  here is a list of various opportunities to consider.

Investor Relations Associate

As an investor relations associate, you would work for a financial institution and manage the relationship with the organization’s investors. An investor relations associate can be involved in different aspects of a financial institution, such as marketing to attract more investors or in IT to manage technology efficiencies.

Budget Analyst

Budget analysts are responsible for assisting public and private organizations manage their finances. According to BLS, they make a median wage of $78,970 per year, and the projected job outlook for this position is 3%.

Actuary

As an actuary scientist, you’ll analyze and mitigate financial risks using a combination of math, statistics, and financial theory. Actuary scientists often work for insurance companies. 

Accountant

As an accountant, you’ll analyze and audit finances for a company, organization, or individual. Many accountants pursue becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) because it is considered the highest standard within the profession. 

Credit Analyst

A company hires a credit analyst to assess the risk of offering a loan and analyzing whether a borrower can pay back money loaned to them by reviewing the individual’s or organization’s credit history.

Lawyer

A lawyer or attorney is a person who practices law. As a lawyer, you’ll interpret and apply legal theories to defend or prosecute individuals or organizations within a court of law.

CFO

The chief financial officer (CFO) at a company is part of the executive team that manages the organization. The CFO is responsible for managing the company finances, such as financial planning and cash flow.

Financial Director

At a company, the finance director is part of the executive team and manages and strategizes finances to ensure the long-term success of the company. 

Controller

As a controller, you’ll be responsible over all accounting, budgeting, and financial transactions at a company. Most controllers work under the company chief financial officer (CFO).

Financial Examiner

Financial examiners monitor financial institutions to make sure they follow policy and legislation regarding financial management and transactions. Financial examiners make a median salary of $81,430, according to BLS.

Portfolio Manager

A portfolio manager strategizes and manages a client’s investment portfolio. The investor(s) invest their money to later use it as a retirement fund, endowment fund, and the portfolio manager uses research and analysis to place and manage those investments to make their client the most amount of money possible.

Trader 

Stock traders financially benefit from the sale of stock shares. They can trade on behalf of a company or individual.

Stockbroker 

Stockbrokers are responsible for buying and selling stocks for clients. As a stockbroker, you’ll most likely work for a brokerage firm and be paid on commission.

Personal Financial Advisor 

A personal financial advisor helps people manage their finances as well as plan for the future. Personal financial advisors have a median wage of $89,330 annually, according to BLS.

While people with an MBA may be involved in similar areas as those with a Master’s in Finance, there is more opportunity to specialize with a finance concentration. People considering careers in the finance arena should have strong skills in math, be detail-oriented, practice critical thinking, and excel as communicators. 

Careers and Salary with a Master’s in Finance

Career Annual SalaryProjected Growth Rate (2019-29) 
Budget Analyst$78,9703%
Actuary$111,03018%
Accountant$73,5604%
Lawyer$126,9304%
CFO$107,6804%
Controller$134,18015%
Financial Examiner$81,4307%
Stockbroker$64,7707%
Personal Financial Advisor$89,3304%

Source: BLS

What are the Advantages to a Master’s in Finance degree?

Bloomberg Business says the 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, resulting in a more affordable academic package. Beginning salaries tend to be lower for people with a finance degree, but that is due to the lack of 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. However, financial positions are changing, and many professionals with MBAs are going back to school to get a Master’s in Finance to become more competitive on the market. 

More Resources: 

Most Affordable Doctorate in Finance Online

What Kind of Financial Aid Is Available for Graduate School?

50 Great Scholarships for Online Graduate Students

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