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Careers For Finance Majors

What do Ben Bernanke, Mukesh Ambani, Peter Lynch, Christine Lagarde and Carlos Slim Helu have in common? They all have such command over the world of finance that their comments can move markets, their deals set the value for firms and their policies and ideas shape economies, corporations and governments.

Introduction to a career in finance

The field of finance involves the practical application of economics and accounting principles in a business environment to control and supervise financial operations in various organizations. These operations include salaries, testing and development funds, marketing expenses, taxes and other financial aspects.

Finance professionals are charged with analyzing market trends and proposing the most viable investment for the future. They also audit a company’s finances and reporting any irregularities to their supervisors. Finance is considered the backbone of virtually every business, and professionals in this field are critical for the success of any organization.

What sort of education should I get for a career in finance?

A number of colleges offer on-campus and online degree programs in finance. The programs are:

  • Associate’s degree in Finance
  • Bachelor’s degree in Finance
  • Master’s degree in Finance
  • PhD in Finance

Students start off with a core curriculum of subjects such as business communications, financial analysis, econometrics, economics, corporate finance, financial reporting, monetary policy development and investment management.

You will also be offered the chance to choose a specialization area to increase your expertise and job opportunities.

  • Accounting
  • Banking
  • Investment banking
  • Real estate
  • Insurance
  • Asset management
  • Financial management

While many people may tell that an associate or bachelor’s degree is sufficient for a career in finance, it is most preferable if you have a master’s degree or an MBA to properly aid your career to advancement.

Will I need certification?

Most financial professions prefer applicant who have a certification, which is seen as proof of their competency in a chosen field. The most commonly and widely accepted professional certifications are:

  • Certified Cash Manager (Treasury Management Association)
  • Certified Financial Planner (CFP)
  • Certified Financial Manager (CFM)
  • Chartered Financial Consultant
  • Chartered Financial Analyst (Association for Investment Management and Research)

Important Qualities for Finance Graduates

Studying a degree in finance requires a certain important skills and qualities. These are:

  • Analytical skills: graduates must be capable of interpreting and analyzing financial data and market trends.

  • Organizational skills: if graduates choose to work in managerial positions, they will require organizational skills to help lead their teams.

  • Communication skills: the finance department of any organization is very closely linked with other departments, in which case graduates will have to effectively share analysis with other involved parties.

  • Initiative: the financial world can be a very risky one and graduates may have to take initiative in inviting people to invest in securities, commodities and financial services.

  • Detail oriented: financers must pay attention to every minute detail of a financial matter. By going in-depth and working more thoroughly, they are better able to make sounder decisions.

  • Computer skills: there is normally extensive use of software packages that aid in analyzing financial and statistical data.

  • Math skills: when estimating the value of investments and financial securities, mathematical skills are very important.

The more skills you’ll be able to encompass upon graduation from the degree program, the better your chances of placement at a prestigious organization.

What are the different types of careers in finance?

A degree in finance opens up loads of opportunities across a variety of industries, from banking to healthcare to information technology. Students having this degree can possibly have a career in finance as finance managers, bankers, analysts and consultants, investment managers, brokers, property managers, real estate developers and venture capitalists.

The most commonly chosen careers after a degree in finance are:

  • Financial Analysts: A job as a financial analyst will require both preparation and hard work. However, the results will help obtain chances of financial growth as well as inclusion into the business landscape. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted a 16% increase in job growth for financial analysts between 2012 and 2022. In May 2012, the median annual wage for financial analysts was $76, 950 while the top 10 percent in the financial analyst profession earned more than $148,430.
  • Financial Managers: Are responsible for the financial upkeep of a business. They direct investments and develop strategies for financial gains. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted a 9% increase in job growth for financial managers between 2012 and 2022. In May 2012, the median annual wage for finance managers was $109,740 while the top 10 percent in the financial manager profession earned more than $187,200.

Other careers that require specialization into finance, but may be equally rewarding are:

  • Commodities, Securities and Financial Services Sales Agents: They connect sellers and buyers in financial markets. Their annual median pay in 2012 was $71,720 while their expected job growth from 2012 to 2022 is 11%.
  • Financial Examiners: Impose and check if companies are complying with the laws that govern financial activity. They evaluate risks attached to loans; assess bank ratings and review profit and loss statements and balance sheets. Their annual median pay in 2012 was $75,800 while their expected job growth from 2012 to 2022 is 6%.


  • Personal Financial Advisors: Give financial advice to laymen regarding their investments, insurance and taxes. Their annual median pay in 2012 was $67,520 while their expected job growth from 2012 to 2022 at 27%.
  • Accountants and Auditors: Examine and prepare financial records of a company. Their annual median pay in 2012 was $63,550 while their expected job growth from 2012 to 2022 is 13%.

Advancement in the field of financial analysis comes with experience and specialization. If you decide to pick finance as a major in your degree, you will have many career paths to choose from.

*All salary related figures have been taken from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.


Frequently Asked Question(s)

Q:Which MBA is best after doing degree in mechanical engineering?

A:If you have completed your undergraduate degree In Mechanical Engineering, it will be best to pursue a related field of specialization at the time of getting enrolled in the MBA program. The MBA program is offered in a bunch of specialization areas listed on our website. You can browse through our website and pick the specialization that suits you the best.

Q:What international qualifications do I need in order to pursue a career in finance?

A:Students can opt for a number of international qualifications in order to pursue a career in finance. Some of these qualifications are Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA), Certified Public Accountants (CPA), Association for Investment Management and Research (AIMR), Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) and Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). With the financial industry showing positive growth, there is huge potential for students interested in this profession.

Q:What courses do I need to study to pursue a career in Finance?

A:Students interested in pursuing a career in finance are required to attempt a number of courses. Some of the courses included in a Masters in Finance qualification are Financial Analysis for Managers, Options and Futures, Finance in a Global Environment, Securities and Investment Analysis and Financial Modeling and Analysis. Students can pursue this qualification online by searching through a number of accredited institutions listed on our website.

Q:What degree do I need to take to enter accounting and finance careers?

A:In order to enter Accounting And Finance Careers, you must get enrolled in the undergraduate program for finance and/or accounting. You can do this online or in a campus based institute depending on your preference. With finance and accounting degree, you can be hired at the beginner level finance positions. In order to secure management level accounting or finance positions, you will have to complete your MBA.

Q:What do I need to do to have lucrative business and finance careers?

A:In order to have lucrative Business And Finance Careers, you need to get enrolled in the undergraduate program specializing in business and finance. This will allow you to get beginner level jobs in the industry. However, if you are interested in securing management level positions, you can complete the masters in business and finance degree program.

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