Finance and Investment MSc
- Course Content
- Special Features
- Teaching & Assessment
- Entry Criteria
About the Course
This Finance and Investment Masters programme is a specialised postgraduate degree course focusing on security/portfolio investment decision making. As such, it is structured around the syllabus of the Chartered Financial Analysts Institute. The emphasis of this postgraduate course is on issues related to investment in capital markets, such as investment strategies, the evaluation of investment performance, and the use of financial statement information in evaluating company performance. The MSc in Finance and Investment at Brunel provides a systematic understanding of the techniques of modelling financial decisions, the valuation of investments and pricing securities using data from a range of different markets.
This postgraduate degree will allow students whose career choices are likely to lie with financial institutions or in financial management to develop the relevant analytical tools and techniques necessary for such a career. The Finance and Investment MSc should also be of interest to applicants who are already practitioners in the financial field. The aim of this course is to produce graduates with an advanced knowledge and understanding of corporate finance, financial markets, financial institutions and securities.
Tel +44 (0)1895 265285
For applications already submitted: Contact Admissions
The MSc course is designed with four equally weighted modules in each of the first two terms, with three being compulsory and one an option from a list. The dissertation carries one third of the marks for the course and is undertaken after the taught modules have been completed. The compulsory modules provide an excellent coverage of core material in finance designed in a way to be applicable to the areas of finance and investment.
All modules are compulsory for this Master's programme.
Taught modules are subject to change.
Essentials of Mathematics and Statistics: The aim of this module is to ensure that students have a systematic comprehension of the required minimum knowledge of mathematics and statistics to successfully meet the learning outcomes at postgraduate level. This module covers all the preparatory technical material needed to undertake the MSc in Finance and Investment, and feeds in to all assessed modules.
Financial Theory: This module is designed to provide students with a thorough knowledge of financial theory through the study of the interaction between firms, individuals and the macroeconomy. The module provides an opportunity for students to develop an understanding of capital markets through the study of portfolio theory, equilibrium asset pricing models and efficient market theory.
Financial Analysis: The module provides the analytical tools to evaluate financial securities and a critical understanding of the relevance of accounting information for security valuation. The role of accounting accruals is explored and their impact on earnings as a timely firm performance measure is considered. The module also examines how excess volatility arises in financial markets, its relationship with the theory of market efficiency and why some investment strategies yield positive excess returns over time.
Security Analysis and Funds Management: The aims of this module are to: 1) Provide an overview of securities traded in fixed income, stock and derivative markets and their characteristics along with the stylised facts of financial markets; 2) Introduce classical models used for portfolio selection and risk management.
Modelling Financial Markets and Forecasting: This Investment and Finance module aims to provide participants with the skills necessary to conduct their own empirical investigations of a range of economic and financial relationships and with the knowledge necessary to understand the related academic and practical literature. The emphasis throughout is on the rationale of the econometric methods analysed and their use in practice to both model and predict economic and financial problems.
Macro and Financial Econometrics: This module provides a broad introduction to the theory and practice of econometrics. Econometrics is concerned with the systematic study of economic phenomena using observed data. The aim is to help students use statistical methods to estimate the parameters of economic models, and test economic hypotheses. The module provides a firm foundation in the theory and practice of econometric modelling of financial markets and is both theoretical and applied, and includes a number of empirical examples and applications.
Corporate Finance: This module is designed to provide the student with a thorough knowledge of corporate finance through the study of the interaction between firms and the capital markets. This involves option pricing theory and applications, the firm’s capital structure decision, the firm’s dividend policy, the firm’s mergers and acquisitions decision, and the firm’s decision to go public.
Derivative Securities: The module enumerates and describes the various securities and financial markets in a clear and concise manner that accurately blends theory and practice. This module describes the financial derivative securities that are used in modern finance, and outlines the principles behind their valuation. Finance and Investment MSc students are introduced to options, futures, swaps, bonds and the yield curve. This is followed by option pricing techniques, notably the continuous time no arbitrage pricing theory of Black and Scholes, and the lattice approach of Cox, Ross and Rubinstein, applied to options on stocks.
Risk Management: The main topics of study on this module are financial deregulation and how globalisation and technology have combined with advances in risk analysis to create the discipline of risk management. Students are introduced to the risk management of financial instruments portfolios using risk measures, such as conditional volatility models, value-at-risk and credit risk. The module concludes with an introduction to numerical methods.
Dissertation: A 60-credit dissertation is mandatory for all postgraduate students who undertake this Masters in Finance and Investment. Students are invited to select a research question which they investigate under supervision by an academic. Data support is provided by the Economics and Finance Department, including Bloomberg and Bankscope. Dissertations raise the employability of students by allowing them to choose research questions that are specific to their job market requirements. Recent examples of dissertations by students taking the Finance and Investment Master’s programme include:
- Modelling and forecasting risk using value-at-risk; evidence from 12 EU stock market indices
- How to deal with the pensions crisis in China
- The term structure of interest rate.
The course, which is based on the syllabus of the Chartered Financial Analysts Institute, is one of four specialist Masters programmes developed by leading experts in the Economics and Finance Department at Brunel. As a postgraduate student here you will be part of a long standing and thriving environment for research and study with many advantages and benefits such as:
Outstanding academic expertise and research-led teaching
- 95% of our academics are nationally and internationally recognised for their work in economics and econometrics in the latest Research Assessment Exercise (2008)
- As a result, you will benefit from up-to-the-minute research-led teaching by academic staff who regularly publish in international peer-reviewed journals, have an impact on international regulatory design and obtain significant research grants.
Professional training facilities
- As a Finance and Investment Master’s student, you will have access to a variety of professional databases used in business and the finance industry which include Datastream, Bloomberg, Bank Scope, Osiris, Reuters 3000 Xtra and Thomson One Banker
- We hold regular training sessions and external visits with Bloomberg, which will enhance your research and expose you to real-world factors that will be important in future finance related employment.
Brunel offers a number of scholarships for UK, EU and international students.
Excellent links with leading organisations
- We have excellent links with business and the finance industry, which will help you to network with organisations and get ahead in your career.
Industry talks, guest lectures and research seminars
- A number of industry talks with professionals from the private sector will be invited to teach part of the Finance and Investment programme and will provide you with further practical experience
- There is a wide range of events on offer, such as guest lectures and research seminars to keep you up-to-date on the latest developments and will help build your contacts.
Facts and Figures
We are one of the best Economics and Finance Departments in the UK to provide research-active teaching and our research is focused in the following four research centres:
Brunel Macroeconomic Research Centre (BMRC) – We are a group of experienced macroeconomists that focus on research in monetary policy, unemployment and the labour market, and financial development and growth.
Centre for Economic Development and Institutions (CEDI) – CEDI’s activities cover the emerging research field of economic development and institutions, incorporating development economics, comparative economics and transition economics.
Centre for Empirical Finance (CEF) – The main research areas covered within this centre are financial econometrics, risk modelling, micro finance, international finance and computational finance.
Centre for Accounting and Corporate Governance (CACG) – CACG’s research focus includes: What is the process of governance failure? How should it be defined and how can it be predicted? How does governance impact on managers’ incentives? How is governance affected by cultural norms and how does governance affect financial markets?
The modules on the Finance and Investment Masters programme incorporate a diverse range of teaching methods which reflect the module learning outcomes and the demands of the subject material. Effective learning is achieved through a combination of lectures, seminars, directed independent study, workshops, oral presentations, and varied assessment patterns. Use of appropriate IT resources is expected (e.g. electronic resources to access data, and relevant software programmes used in research methods). Dissertation research will give you the opportunity to integrate your knowledge of important themes, frameworks and research findings in finance and investment obtained via lectures, seminars, and workshops.
All modules of this postgraduate degree course are assessed by a combination of coursework and final examinations. Students who successfully complete the taught part of the course can proceed to the dissertation stage. MSc students are expected to work on their dissertation in the summer and to submit the final draft in mid-September.
The Department of Economics and Finance is proud to be celebrating 20 years of taught postgraduate education in Finance. Former students from our MSc programmes are now themselves teaching in the Australian Business School, EdHec Business School, Nice, Glasgow University and Oslo Business School. Other MSc students hold senior positions in financial institutions including the Bank of Cyprus, HSBC in Istanbul, Standard Life in the UK and TD Bank Financial Group in Canada. Many of our Finance and Investment graduates also hold positions as government economists including the Bank of England and HM Treasury.
Graduate School Workshops
In addition to the Department’s events and training sessions, you will have the opportunity to undertake workshops and skills training provided by the University’s Graduate School, for example:
- CV Writing for Masters Students
- CV Writing Drop-in Clinic for Masters Students
- How to Succeed in Assessment Centres (Masters Students)
- Interview Techniques for Masters Students
- Transferrable Skills for Masters Students
For further information visit the Graduate School.
At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.
UK/EU students: £12,600 full-time
International students: £16,000 full-time
Fees quoted are per annum and are subject to an annual increase.
English Language Requirements
- IELTS: 6.5 (min 6 in all areas)
- TOEFL Paper test: 580 (TWE 4.5) PBT
- TOEFL Internet test: 92 IBT (R20, L20, S20, W20)
- Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores)
- BrunELT: 65% (min 60% in all areas)
Brunel also offers our own BrunELT English Test and accept a range of other language courses. We also have a range of Pre-sessional English language courses, for students who do not meet these requirements, or who wish to improve their English.
Our International Pathways and Language Centre offers a range of foundation and pre-masters courses to provide you with the academic skills required for your chosen course.