MBA in Finance: USA, Canada, Germany, India, UK, Singapore, Australia

MBA in FinanceMoney matters need experts who understand how money matters.

And an MBA that trains in financial wizardry is one of the most competitive, lucrative and in-demand MBA specializations on both sides of the interview table – MBA in Finance applicants and the employers waiting to snatch them at graduation.

According to the annual GMAC Corporate Recruiters Surveys, Finance and Accounting consistently show up among the top charters in the industries looking to hire MBA grads.

Here’s a snippet of what those demands look like, objectively.

Except for a slight dip in 2016, the number of recruits in the Finance/Accounting industry has been on a rise.

The data is based on responses from around 1,000 employers, each year.
 

MBA in Finance
Source: GMAC Corporate Recruiters Survey

 
In this article, we will expand on what you may need to gain admission in a competitive MBA program in Finance and how your future career and life will unfold after the degree.
 

What are the eligibility requirements and skills for an MBA in Finance?

The basic requirements for an MBA degree, whether Finance or any other major, is essentially the same.

You will have to have your ducks in a row – GMAT / GRE (or CAT in the Indian system), GPA, work experience, MBA essays, interviews, and more.

However, the subtle difference that sets Finance guys apart is their keenness on all things math.

Sharp quantitative and analytical skills are a must to survive and make sense of a future career which primarily deals in numbers.

A background in economics or finance is a plus but not essential. Typical folks who frequent finance major classes have one of the following on their resume.

– Economics/Mathematics/Commerce or some quantitative major

– Work experience in the banking or some version of accounting sector

– A strong GMAT/GRE quantitative score. Typical finance guys applying to some of the popular B-Schools have about 700 total score and quant scores in the high percentiles.

If you don’t have one those and yet can justify strong analytical skills through your work experience, you may still keep MBA in Finance on your cards.
 

Common MBA interview questions: Why MBA in finance?

A common enough behavioural question often revolves around why MBA.

If you have determined finance specialization to be your calling, adcoms may also ask you why finance.

More specifically, why MBA in Finance.

This question needs a two-fold preparation.

You will not only have to justify your motivation for choosing the specialization but also what in particular an MBA can give you as against other finance Master’s specialty degrees like MFin, MiF, MSF.

Though it is a significant boon to have an MBA degree in Finance in terms of salaries and other monetary perks, this should not be the only motivation to pursue it.

At least that certainly should not be your response to the why MBA in Finance interview question.

The love of a financial gain cannot be the only reason driving your choice to study finance.

Think about what draws you to the quantitative and analytical challenges posed by the field.

Think about how “finance” itself is an integral part of any organization and doesn’t exist in a silo by itself.

Think about how you can prepare yourself to be versatile and worthwhile enough, having this degree to back you, to join virtually any sector if you so desire.

And why MBA and not any other Master’s? Try combining the skills any MBA program gives – hands on practical as compared to just theoretical training in communication, management, strategy, and all those goodies that the corporate world thrives on – on top of the financial courses.

Spend some time thinking about a believable response to this interview question as it is bound to come up in some shape or form somewhere along your application.

In fact, instead of focusing on how to convince the adcoms, begin with convincing yourself about your decision. The rest will follow.
 

Syllabus and Subjects

According to Wharton’s description of their MBA degree with a Finance major, the aim of the program is to develop the analytical foundation and tools, using techniques of economic analysis, mathematics, and statistics. Typical courses, thus, involve:

– Corporate Finance: Studying the financial structure of businesses, how money is managed and decisions are made for budgeting, investments, cash flow, etc.

– Macroeconomics: Studying how the global economy functions. National economic policies, income accounting, international relations, employment, etc. form a part of this course.

– Financial Derivatives: Understand derivative securities, financial trading, asset portfolios, corporate decision making, investments, etc. These courses are aimed at training students to develop skills on pricing and hedging securities and using them for investment and risk management, according to Wharton’s course description.

– International Financial Markets: Understanding foreign exchange rates, international money markets, currency, international stock and portfolios, etc.

Other popular courses include, International Banking, Capital Markets, Fixed Income Securities, Microeconomics, Financial Statement Analysis, Insurance, Investment and Portfolio Management, Marketing and Strategy, Venture Capital, Buyouts and Acquisitions, Business Strategy, Equity, Fintech, Financial Engineering, and more.
 

Best MBA in Finance Programs

Here are some of the top B-Schools for a stellar future career in finance.
 

Best MBA in Finance in USA

University Duration Tuition (Approx.)
University of Pennsylvania, Wharton 20 months $81,400/first year
Columbia University 2 years $77,400/year
Stanford Graduate School of Business 2 years $77,000/year
Duke University, Fuqua 2 years $74,800/year
Yale School of Management 2 years $72,400/year
MIT, Sloan 2 years $77,200/year
Harvard Business School 2 years $73,400/year
University of Chicago, Booth 2.5 – 3 years Minimum $144,000 total
New York University, Stern 2 years $74,200/year
Cornell University, Johnson 2 years $69,500/year
University of Virginia, Darden 2 years $70,700/year
UCLA, Anderson 2 years $65,000/year

 

Best MBA in Finance in Canada

University Duration Tuition (Approx.)
University of Toronto, Rotman 2 years $97,500
McGill University, Desautels 2 years $70,700
York University, Schulich 2 years $78,300
Western University, Ivey 2 years $84,200
Queen’s University, Smith 2 years $71,600

 

Best MBA in Finance in Germany

University Duration Tuition (Approx.)
Frankfurt School of Finance & Management 12 months $40,900

 

Best MBA in Finance in India

University Duration Tuition (Approx.)
Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad 2 years $32,400
Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta 2 years $32,000
Xaviers Labour Research Institute Jamshedpur 2 years $33,000
Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore 2 years $29,500
Faculty of Management Studies, Delhi 2 years $300
JBIMS Mumbai 2 years $8,500

 

Best MBA in Finance in UK

University Duration Tuition (Approx.)
London Business School 15-21 months $102,700
University of Cambridge, Judge 12 months $71,400
Warwick University 12 months $50,600
University of Oxford, Said 12 months $74,500
Imperial College Business School 12 months $65,000

 

Best MBA in Finance in Singapore

University Duration Tuition (Approx.)
National University of Singapore 17 months $45,000
National Technological University, Singapore 12 months $45,000
INSEAD 10 months $97,000

 

Best MBA in Finance in Australia

University Duration Tuition (Approx.)
Deakin University 2 years $40,000
University of South Australia 1.5 years $27,400
Bond University 12-16 months $22,000
Queensland University of Technology 1.5 years $48,000
University of Technology Sydney 2 years $55,000
La Trobe University 1.5 years $42,000
University of Western Sydney 2 years $21,000

 

Jobs after MBA in Finance

 

Career Path after MBA in Finance

Graduates with an MBA in finance find positions that cover both financial and non-financial institutions, partaking in their finance department.

Many find mid-level positions at management consulting firms, not-for-profit entities, etc.

While others secure jobs at investment banks, brokerage firms, commercial banks, etc.

Typical job roles include financial manager, financial analyst, risk analyst, insurance manager, credit analyst, etc.

According to the QS TopMBA Jobs and Salary Trends Report, from 2018, Finance is one of the top few specializations in demand by employers worldwide, following innovation and leadership skills.

Also, according to 2017 data, the hiring percentage for MBAs in Finance graduates (39%) was the second highest among all specializations, that year.

Current predictions show either buoyant levels of growth in recruitment from the previous years as in Western Europe and Asia, or even a dip as in USA and Canada.

However, those are mostly driven by either political situations or international uncertainties like the likelihood of EU exit shake-ups in the major powers in those regions.

Latin America did, and still does, see a significant growth in finance MBA jobs.

 

Salaries after MBA in Finance

On an average, the consulting industry tends to give the highest MBA salaries at about $131,000.

But Financial Services follow at $119,000, according to US News data.

Financial Analysts make anywhere between $50,000 to over $350,000 depending upon the experience level.

Finance Managers make about $120,000, Portfolio Managers about $110,000, and generally all other salaries fall well within a happy range of $100,000.

Top employers like JP Morgan Chase, Citibank, Morgan Stanley pay somewhere in that similar range.

 

Life after MBA in Finance

Finance careers tend to be quite demanding if you opt for the more lucrative Investment Banking roles.

A study by Transparent Career shows an almost 90 hour work week for Goldman Sachs employees.

While JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley are not far less worse at about 70 hours a week.

Relatively comfortable hours are logged in by Private Equity and other financial service fellows.

Many IB employees face health and stress issues.

Some manage to venture out of the jet-set, yet lucrative, life for simpler roles within the financial industry or otherwise.

Overall though, MBAs, including Finance folks, report a happy outcome in their future career as well as personal well-being.

Apart from raising their financial situation, Finance MBAs are trained to have skills that are highly versatile in various other industries as well.

Their analytical and quantitative powers are acclaimed enough to garner them opportunities anywhere else if they so choose.

Personally, a balance of work and life has become an important enough focus for corporates in recent times to help these qualified employees to reduce stress and enjoy their work and life simultaneously.

 

MBA in Finance has been and will remain one of the most sought-after specialities.

If you possess the right prerequisite background and skills, as well as the inclination to pursue a Finance major, explore your options in the MBAverse.

There are many excellent possibilities available.

Send us an email if you’d like professional help at info [at] mbacrystalball [dot] com.

 

Also read,

 

Sources: 1, 2


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5 Comments

  1. Swati says:

    Hi Sameer,
    I am in my mid 30’s with close to 9 years of work exp in IT post engineering. I had to quit my job in 2016 since my husband was diagnosed with Chrons disease. I made a conscious decision to take care of my family then. Post this , while my son was in nursery, he was suspected to have ADHD. Compelled by these events and out of sheer desperation to help my family , I started working for children with special needs, did volunteering work and full time teaching at schools. Today, I feel enriched and enlightened by these experiences that life gave me to deal with. Now that my family is stable, I want to pursue masters and get back to my coveted job.
    I have been reading on LinkedIn and other forums how MBA applicants should fall within a certain age bracket or otherwise the chances are not so great.
    I would like to ask if the world of MBA admissions and applications is not open for women who have to deal with career gaps due to maternity or family emergency?

    Regards,
    Swati.

  2. SHAIKH ARBAZUDDIN USMAN says:

    Hello mem/sir
    I m persuing MBA second year in finance. give me advice like what I will do after a MBA. One more thing is that I am interested in practical questions like calculating not theory’s. So give me suggest what can I do after MBA.

  3. Garima verma says:

    Hello sir,
    I am in a huge confusion…i did my undergrad( b.tech from biotechnology) in 2018 after that took a year gap for the Gate exam preparation couldn’t perform well and now totally messed up to think what to do next…Should i prepare for Govt exams or should i give one more try for gate ?

  4. Nanditha says:

    Hi Sameer,
    I am glad I came across this page. Its really helpful. I have a query:
    I have totally 15+ years of IT experience in Hardware Engineering(PCB Design). I would like to go for PGP course at ISB. What do you suggest with my opinion and how would be ROI? Thanks a lot.Nanditha

  5. Sameer Kamat says:

    @Swati: You sure can plan for an MBA. You’ll find stories of applicants (including mothers) who’ve overcome career gaps to get into good MBA programs. You’ll have to justify the career gap, and also convince the adcoms that you are fully capable of managing the rigours of an MBA and then a demanding career after graduation.

    @Shaikh: Ideally you should’ve had the answer to this question before you started your MBA. Or at least in the first year. Others cannot suggest what you should be doing. Here are some common jobs after MBA: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOLDqo98GmI

    @Garima: We don’t focus on Indian exams, so we can’t comment on whether you should re-take the GATE or other exams. Our only advice is to take the call based on your capabilities and career goals.

    @Nanditha: For your experience, ISB will not be a good fit. Check out these instead: https://www.mbacrystalball.com/blog/2018/05/14/sloan-fellows-program-review-mit-lbs-stanford/

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