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MSc International Finance

Why we're great

  • We're an international community, exploring global financial issues affecting the world today
  • We're ranked in the top 25 in the UK for research excellence (REF 2014)
  • Our work is often cited in the Bank of England, the European Central Bank and the Federal Reserve

Course options

Duration: 1 year
Start month: October
Location: Colchester Campus
Based in: Essex Business School
Fee (Home/EU): £9,950
Fee (International): £15,500

Duration: 2 years
Start month: October
Location: Colchester Campus
Based in: Essex Business School
Fee (Home/EU): £4,975
Fee (International): £7,750

Course enquiries

Telephone 01206 872719
Email pgadmit@essex.ac.uk

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About the course

How does the nature of finance change in international environments? What impact does the move towards large international trading blocks (such as the EU) have on international finance?

On this course, you develop a broad vision and understanding of the changing role and nature of international finance and investments within the context of a global marketplace. You become highly competent in dealing with exchange rates and portfolio management, as well as honing advanced mathematical skills.

Essex Business School is ranked in the top 25 in the UK for research excellence (REF 2014) and is a truly international place to study, with more than half of our staff and students joining us from overseas. As a result, this course is informed by the very latest insights from around the world of finance.

Upon graduation, you’ll be well-placed to secure a position in an international organisation with a focus on corporate finance, investment management or trading, among many other responsibilities.

Our MSc International Finance is also available to study part-time.

Our expert staff

We have one of the largest finance groups in the UK, ensuring this course focuses on a wide range of contemporary issues in banking and finance. Our work continues to make a difference to the world we live in, with our research often presented in the Bank of England, the European Central Bank, and the Federal Reserve.

Our expert staff have backgrounds in both social science theory and industry practice and excel in areas including: business ethics and corporate social responsibility; organisation studies; leadership and strategy; finance and banking; risk management; and international management.

Specialist facilities

Our Colchester Essex Business School building is a vibrant place to study.

Make use of our industry-standard trading floor, complete with Bloomberg Financial Market Labs, and enjoy learning in our modern lecture theatres, There are plenty of spaces for networking and group work, such as our freely-available study pods and innovation booths and Bonds café.

Your future

Deutsche Bank, ANZN Bank and IndisInd Bank Ltd are just some of the leading companies who employ Essex Business School graduates. Our courses lay the foundations for roles in financial analysis, management, public administration and accountancy and inspire many of our students to start their own business ventures.

We provide support to help you secure your dream job, internship or placement. In addition to our Student Services Team, you can also seek advice from the University’s Employability and Careers Centre.

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Example structure

Postgraduate study is the chance to take your education to the next level. The combination of compulsory and optional modules means our courses help you develop extensive knowledge in your chosen discipline, whilst providing plenty of freedom to pursue your own interests. Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore to ensure your course is as relevant and up-to-date as possible your core module structure may be subject to change.

For many of our courses you’ll have a wide range of optional modules to choose from – those listed in this example structure are, in many instances, just a selection of those available. Our Programme Specification gives more detail about the structure available to our current postgraduate students, including details of all optional modules.

Year 1

Gain an understanding of international arbitrage relationships, models of exchange rate determination, and recent issues and debates in the international finance literature. Learn to describe the basic international parity relationships, to outline some of the basic models of exchange rate determination, and have a good grasp of issues such as the international debt crisis, capital mobility, and the advent of the European single currency.

Your dissertation is the culmination of your Masters programme, where you apply the knowledge gained on your course to produce an extended independent piece of work. You generate an original idea, analyse literature and current knowledge and produce a coherent argument that shows your ability to relate theory to practice. Your dissertation will help you develop vital skills for the workplace, as well as the ability to analyse real problems through an academic lens. You are assigned a supervisor for the duration of your project.

This module equips you with the econometric tools and necessary experience to conduct empirical research in finance. You review statistical and basic econometric models and learn to apply econometric techniques in finance by considering topics such as (G)ARCH models, unit roots and cointegration.

Master the pricing of financial derivatives and their use for hedging financial risks. You study the basics of futures and options, analyse the Black-Scholes and binomial option pricing models, and consider various numerical techniques for pricing financial derivatives. Futures and options are then utilised in the context of hedging financial risks, and you are introduced to the concept of volatility trading and the treatment of volatility as an asset class.

Understand the process of portfolio management. You cover the main concepts such as efficient diversification, managing risk exposures, and the valuation of financial assets that are at the core of managing investment portfolios, and pay special attention to the practicalities of the implementation of these concepts.

This module covers topics in mathematics that are required in Masters-level finance courses at the University of Essex. You focus on the basics of linear algebra, differential calculus including optimisation and dynamics.

The recent financial crisis and credit crunch have demonstrated that risk management was too narrowly defined. In this course you examine the Value at Risk (VAR) measure of financial risk developed in the 1990s, before discussing the new post-crisis Regulatory environment.

Gain theoretical knowledge and a practical understanding of financial markets, trading strategies, risk and money management and trader analytics at the highest level. You study a mix of classroom-based instruction, case studies and practical trading exercises where you trade on real-time simulated global markets through the use of industry-strength proprietary trading software in the trading lab.

Teaching

  • Tailor the content of your course to more closely fit your interests and aspirations
  • Courses focus on practical applications and links with industry
  • We run an open seminar series

Assessment

  • Regular assessment is by coursework, presentations, case studies, group work, tests and examinations

Dissertation

  • You submit a 15,000 word dissertation

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Qualifications

UK entry requirements

A 1st, 2:1 or good 2:2 degree, or equivalent, in finance, economics or business. We also welcome applications from candidates with any science or engineering degree.

International and EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Email pgadmit@essex.ac.uk for further details about the qualifications we accept. Include information in your email about the undergraduate qualification you have already completed or are currently taking.

IELTS entry requirements

If English isn’t your first language, we require IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

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Visit us

Open days

We hold postgraduate events in February/March and November, and open days for all our applicants throughout the year. Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex, and give you the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing tours@essex.ac.uk and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

Applying

You can apply for our postgraduate courses online. You’ll need to provide us with your academic qualifications, as well as supporting documents such as transcripts, English language qualifications and certificates. You can find a list of necessary documents online, but please note we won’t be able to process your application until we have everything we need.

There is no application deadline but we recommend that you apply before 1 July for our taught courses starting in October. We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.

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Although great care is taken in compiling our course details, they are intended for the general guidance of prospective students only. The University reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University.

The full procedures, rules and regulations of the University are set out in the Charter, Statues and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.