What is MBA in finance?

An MBA specialization in finance, as the name suggests is a management course specializing in finance. 

An MBA in finance, creates a balance between management skills and pure mathematical skills, which will boost your career towards c-suite jobs in finance.

Students can either choose it as a specialization offered by all top MBA institutes or as an elective course in the second year of the course. Pursuing this course requires students to be good in mathematics, economics, and financial theory as these subjects are studied in great detail in this course.

Admission procedure and eligibility criteria are although same as MBA general, Entrance exams like CAT,  XAT, CMAT, MAT, SNAP, etc scores are also accepted by the top institutes.

Read more: List of all MBA entrance exams

What Careers does an MBA in Finance Prepare You For?

A finance MBA prepares students for careers in:

  • Accounting
  • Financial planning
  • Banking
  • Corporate finance
  • Other careers closely related to the finance field.

Skills taught

The focus on mathematics, statistics and analysis such as economic analysis is very high in the finance degree.

MBA Finance The course syllabus and projects for students studying MBA in Finance are mostly on topics such as mergers and acquisitions, real estate investment, private equity projects, stock market pitch projects, corporate risk, insurance, financial theory, investment strategy and local and global economics.

Students will learn these through both lectures and activities including teamwork projects, management simulations, role playing, and traditional lectures.

The MBA in Finance typically includes the following courses:

  • Corporate investment management
  • Portfolio management
  • Hedge fund management
  • Small business and corporate finance
  • Investments
  • Securities analysis
  • Borrowing
  • Fundraising
  • Collections
  • Disbursements
  • International finance
  • Coverage of international markets and macroeconomics, global financial institutions, valuation, volatility, fixed income securities,

International economics programs entail international exposure for students. The Wharton School, for example, has tie ups with other B-Schools around the world, and helps students in attaining a more global perspective and experience.

Need To Address Female MBAs Pay Gap As B-Schools Move Towards Gender Parity

Most MBA in finance courses, include internships or working in major financial companies on pay as part of their curriculum. An internship will allow you to have a deeper understanding on which type of job in finance will be right for you.

Job prospects after MBA finance 

Apart from working in hardcore financial fields like financial planning, corporate finance students can also opt for lucrative jobs in the Insurance and tax industry.

Finance graduates also have several opportunities to land careers in finance consultancies, financial institutions and banks. You could also go into fields such as merchant banking, investment and consumer banking, international finance, corporate finance and institutional finance.

And if you have gained enough experience in your field, you could also serve on government committees. When serving in government committees you can speak on policy-making issues. You can also provide consultation services to corporate organizations.

Which Are The MBA Programs With Best Pay in Finance Sector? 

Common MBA in finance jobs

  • Accounting Manager
  • Chief Financial Officers
  • Cash Managers
  • Investment Banking Associates
  • Credit Managers & Specialists
  • Financial Analyst
  • Corporate Controllers
  • Finance Officers & Treasurers
  • Insurance & Risk Managers
  • Investment Bankers
  • Investing Sales Traders & Associates

There are many roles to perform, here is a list of all the roles with their description:

PositionJob Description
Asset ManagementResponsible for determining the feasibility of assets acquisition and presenting the supporting reports to upper management or board of members of the organisation.
Corporate FinanceResponsible for identifying and securing privatisation, acquisition and merger deals, investing large monetary funds, and buying and selling financial products for their clients.
Corporate BankingThe primary responsibilities include discussing with the corporate and personal customers about their financial requirements and providing appropriate financial advice. It also includes advising corporate clients about acquisitions, capital markets, or mergers.
Credit Risk ManagementThe role includes the formation and implementation of policies and procedures that reduce credit risk for a financial institution and overseeing the preparation of performance reports for management. The individual manages the building of financial models to predict credit risk exposure to the organization.



The primary responsibility is to work on derivative trading, modeling and structuring related issues.
Hedge Fund ManagementManaging hedge fund investments includes deciding the investment objectives, fee structures and liquidity provisions.
TreasuryThe treasurer position is responsible for corporate liquidity, risk management and investments related to the company’s financial activities.
Private EquityThe primary responsibility is to work with investment banks, mergers, acquisitions or equities divisions of a company. They are responsible to raise money from banks, high-net worth individuals and private firms.

MBA Vs CFA: Which Is Better For A Career in Finance?

Top 10 Companies Hiring MBA in Finance graduates

  • Goldman Sachs
  • Morgan Stanley
  • Boston Consulting Group
  • Bain & Company
  • JP Morgan Chase & Co
  • McKinsey & Co
  • Barclays
  • KPMG

Salaries in Finance – International

People like going the finance career route as there are some mega bucks to be earned in this line. According to PayScale, the average pay for Chief Financial Officer (CFO) London, England is £113,041 (US$148,972) per year. High-flyers in finance can bag salaries of upto £207.526 (US$273,490).

Similarly, in Washington, District of Columbia, the average pay for a Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is US$151,515 per year, with a bonus up to US$20,000 and profit-sharing of US$5,997.

To build strong stock and bond portfolios, investment bankers work with their companies or clients. They help their companies or clients grow their money manifold. Investment banking is known for its long hours and rigorous workload. But the payout is also good – according to PayScale, an investment banker in New York can earn an average pay of US$103,334, with top earners bagging upto US$378,562 with bonuses and profit sharing.

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Financial advisors invest money wisely and give advice on this aspect to individuals and corporations. They guide clients by managing investment accounts or researching other portfolios and opportunities. The pay scale for financial advisors is in the range of US$65,000, but top earners can pull in around US$160,000 and healthy bonuses.

Working with financial advisors, investment managers and mutual fund companies, financial planners help the individual and companies to plan and set a goal for financial futures through a budget. The annual salary of a financial advisor is more than $90,000, and the highest-paid workers can make over US$2000,000.

A Career in Finance? Get the Skills with Masters in Financial Analysis (MFA)

MBA Finance –  Average salary offered in India

According to the recent data by glassdoor.com and payscale.com, this is the average salary offered to respective positions in India:

PositionAverage salary (in Rs LPA)
Financial AnalystFinancial Analyst with an experience of upto four years can earn an average compensation of Rs 3.63 LPA
Corporate FinanceAccording to Glassdoor.com, the average salary for corporate finance is Rs 6.10 LPA
Assistant Vice President – Corporate BankingAccording to Payscale.com,the average salary of an experienced assistant vice president is Rs 19.26 LPA
Credit Risk ManagementAccording to Payscale.com, the average salary of an experienced credit risk manager is Rs 11 LPA
Derivatives StructuringAccording to Glassdoor.com, the average salary of a derivative trader is Rs 9.25 LPA
Portfolio ManagerAccording to Payscale.com, the average salary offered to an experienced portfolio manager is Rs 11.35 LPA
Treasury ManagerAccording to Payscale.com, the average salary offered to an experienced treasury manager is Rs 9 LPA

Other career options for finance MBAs

You can use your degree outside finance-specific fields. In finance, the math and accounting skills might not translate directly to other fields, but analytic and strategic thinking can easily be used in marketing and general management, especially managing accountants, financiers and entrepreneurial activities.

An MBA in finance vs. a specialized master’s degree

Since an MBA in Finance focuses on management, communication and business leadership skills while imparting a deep understanding of finance, the course equips students for senior level management jobs.

An MSc in finance does not focus on management and leadership skills, and on the other hand focuses primarily on technical competence, with the course specializing on linear algebra, differential equations and multivariable calculus.

To put it more simply, an MBA in finance is for students looking to take up leadership and senior managerial positions in the financial field. An MSc in finance on the other hand is for pre-experienced candidates and those looking to move into specialized technical roles suited for candidates who want to take up an operational role in an organization.

As mentioned earlier an MBA in Finance will pave the way for students to take up c-suit jobs in the future such as CFO or a manager of a hedge fund. An MSc in finance will be appropriate to pave the way to positions such as economic theorist, or financial analyst. 

MBA in finance vs. finance courses in an MBA

In every MBA Course, all business schools offers at least some courses in Finance as well. These finance courses tend to give a broad overview of the finance sector and equip students with basic tools and knowledge to communicate in the finance sector.

Any MBA will have courses on topics such as macro and microeconomics, mergers & acquisitions, financial analytics, financial policies, and business transactions such as hostile takeovers.

An MBA in finance on the other hand delves deeper into the aforementioned finance study topics. The classes and syllabus in an MBA in Finance covers topics such as international finance, international financial markets, securities, hedge funds, risk management, portfolio management and small and large business finance.

Specializations within finance

An MBA in finance prepares graduates for a range of careers, there are some business schools that offer a deeper understanding and specialization for those students that have a particular field of interest in mind. Some of the specialization fields in finance are discussed below:

Certified Public Accountant (CPA) practices accountancy as an individual, or as part of a company. Many CPAS practicing independently i.e. not as part of any company, work in the area of tax services, personal investments and personal wealth for private clients. CPAS working for companies, operate in the financial arm of the company, and work on  areas such as taxes, corporate finances and other investment and monetary based roles.

The Certified Financial Adviser (CFA) works either with private or corporate clients or with both and advises them on wise investment purchases and manages their investment portfolios.

Certified Management Accountant (CMA) handles most of a company’s financial decision making. For example preparing statistics and forecasts of the profit margins of a company with regard to specific projects or advising directors of a company for financial growth and protecting their company from potential risk.

 International finance – Specializing in this field opens up opportunities in international investment, banking and taxation. A student having studied International Finance, acquires a deeper understanding and insights into developing markets.

 Financial economics focuses more on observation and analysis of the relationship between a consumer and a producer, on a micro level in a given economy.

 Corporate finance is the area where most students of an MBA in Finance look to land up in. One example of a job profile in this area of specialization is a fund manager. The study in corporate finance focuses on ways to grow a company’s capital through financial forecasting, managing investments by devising investment strategies and mergers & acquisitions. 

Getting Into MBA in Finance 

Skills required 

Business administration skills including leadership qualities, working with a team, problem-solving ability, analytical skills and an excellent way of communicating things is a precondition for a student. Though, there are some functional skills too which are needed when applying for a finance course:

Quantitative Skills Needed For MBA Finance
Basic understanding of accounting and financial management principles
Ability to interpret numbers and draw conclusions from the results.
Ability to handle a wide variety of tasks


 Skills required for an investment banker:  

Strong quantitative and financial skillsAbility to perform well under pressure
Team playerAggressiveness, strong internal motivation, and ambition
Ability to analyse detailed information – suggest and formulate recommendations quicklyAbility to synthesise an enormous amount of data into small manageable chunks
Handle multiple tasks and the ability to take criticism lightlySubmit the reports to the top management

 Students should have a minimum of two years of work experience for entry to most schools.

A good GMAT score is equally important. An average score for entry into a top B-school can be in excess of 700 (in North America in particular). Since, a strong background in mathematics is essential for an MBA in Finance, most schools are looking for quantitative section numbers in the 40-60 range; For example, Wharton, has an average quant score of 47.

Top International Business Schools for MBA Finance

The top 10 schools specialized for an MBA program for finance across the years and across multiple rankings change from year to year. Some consistent performers are:

  • The Wharton School
  • Harvard Business School
  • Columbia Business School
  • The University of Chicago Booth School of Business
  • Stanford Graduate School of Business
  • London Business School
  • Said Business School
  • NYU Stern School of Business
  • Rotman School of Management
  • The Fuqua School of Business 
  • Top 10 MBA in Finance Programs as per QS 2019 Ranking

The QS MBA by Specialization Rankings 2019 released the world’s top business schools and MBA programs for seven different areas of specialization.

Based on employer reptation and research strength the schools are ranked keeping in mind the seven areas. The placement ratio of graduate students is also a crucial indicator for this ranking.

The QS ranking assigns scores to B-Schools on various parameters out of a total possible score of 100.

The Wharton School has been ranked as the best business school in the world for specializing in finance. About 33 % of students passed from this school placed into relevant industries.

Here is a list of top schools:

10 ) The Fuqua School of Business

Situated in Durham, North Carolina, Duke university’s Fuqua school is one of the best schools at the global level to pursue an MBA program. According to Global MBA rankings, the 2019 Fuqua school of business has the best opportunities for an MBA aspirant.

Scoring 80% in employer reputation, 92 for research strength, and 20% of graduates continue to pursue finance as a career makes it more noticeable.

These are the top two areas to be kept in mind when opting for MBA finance:

  • Corporate finance, it includes investment strategies and finance of the company.
  • Stocks, bonds, options, or any other investment dealing with securities.

Duke MBA students are also allowed to earn a Certificate of Excellence in Finance.

These are some of the clubs in the Fuqua related to finance:

  • Asset Management Club
  • Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital Club
  • Finance Club
  • Private Equity Club

9) Rotman School of Management

You will find this beautiful and only college in Canada with a finance specialization in downtown Toronto.

Rotman’s MBA program is prestigious as it ranks among the top 50 MBA programs around the globe, according to QS global rankings 2019. 83 for career placement, 60 for employer reputation, and 91 for research strength, Rotman is a good school for MBA in finance.

With 37% of graduates pursue a career in finance postgraduate it is the highest proportion for finance specialization.

The full-time tuition fee for the class of 2020 is CAD$104,380 (US$77,744) – for Canadian citizens and permanent residents, while CAD$116,610 (US$86,853) for international students.

8) NYU Stern School of Business

NYU Stern is located in the prime area of wall street in Manhattan, also known as the beating heart of finance in states.

Microfinance areas such as corporate finance and investments; and macro-finance issues in the international system are the major courses of the school.

Stern’s finance alumni including Nobel prize winner (2003) in economics Robert angle adds up to the beauty of the school. The faculty is very professional and has won many awards.

On top of it, students are given a real-world experience by allowing them to work with field leaders and enrolling in the best programs including Michal price student investment fund.

Finance Association; Real Estate Club; Stern Investment Management and Research; Stern Private Equity Club are some of the best clubs in Stern school of finance.

7) Saïd Business School

Getting 75 for career placements, 100 for employer reputation, and 93 for research strength, this one-year finance course is very well- honored.

Students can get into investment banking, private equity, and asset management industries with the help of the program. Both online and offline facilities are available to learn more about valuation modeling programs, case studies, and participation in challenges.

With a class size of 315 – 62 nationalities, 93 percent international students, 39 percent female students, an average of five years’ work experience, and a median GMAT of 690, Saïd could be considered for your MBA program.

6) London Business School

With impeccable records in finance and reputation as the leading institution in the world’s finance capital LBS is one of the best options for finance.

From allowing you to customize your courses to selecting more than 70 electives, LBS gives you a full student-centric experience. These are some of the options to choose from:

  • Advanced corporate finance
  • Banks and financial institutions
  • Distressed investing
  • Fixed income securities
  • Hedge funds
  • Real estate finance

As we are talking about customizations, LBS also allows the student to tailor his/her own programs accordingly. Whether to complete in 15, 18- or 21-months students can choose with more flexibility. Tuition fees start from £82,000 (US$108,582)., excluding £240 (US$318) for the subscription of Student association.

5) Stanford Graduate School of Business

With famous alumni – Phil Night (Nike’ co-founder and chairman) Stanford ranks at the top in Global MBA rankings 2019. Mary Barra – female CEO at highest placing fortune company is also a Stanford pass out.

The cost of the course as of the academic year 2019-20 is US$113,917 and $138,523 for the married student.

Featuring students from 63 countries, 172 undergraduate institutions, and 306 organizations, Stanford school of business consist of 319 students, 41 percent women, 42 percent international, with an average of four years’ work experience, and an average GMAT score of 732.

4) Chicago Booth School of Business

The first-ever school in the list scoring above 90 in all three indicators (100 for employer reputation, 92 for strength, and 92 for career placements) Booth is best known for its number games, with 30% students going for the finance industry after graduation.

According to Chicago Booth’s website, “a good percentage of students pursue MBA interests in finance and banking”. Booth offers ways to learn in areas from corporate finance and investment management to private equity and impact investing. MBA in finance and banking has wide career prospects and that’s why it is the most liked course among students. Areas including investment management and finance have gained huge popularity.

Finance courses at Booth include financial instruments; portfolio management; advanced investments; financial markets and institutions.

Stats for the 21-month MBA class of 2020 feature a class size of 591, 52 countries represented, an average GMAT score of 731, and an average of five years’ work experience. Students can also expect to pay US$108,683 intuition.

NOTE: Booth has created more Nobel laureates in the Economic Sciences (28) than any other school and is second only to the University of Cambridge in total.

3) Columbia Business School

One of the oldest business schools situated in New York City, CBS was founded in 1911.

Courses like applied value investing, what will be the future of financial services and the impacts of the investment make this school more noticeable.

The best opportunities are created from the productive clubs of college, these are the best in business:

  • Columbia student investment management association
  • Columbia wealth management club
  • Community career and money skills
  • Equity research club
  • Investment banking club

For the academic year 2018-2019, first-year students paid a base budget of US$110,978, which incorporated tuition, mandatory fees, health services & insurance, and other expenses. Coming to fees, for the academic year, 2018-19 US$110,978 was the base budget, including tuition fees, health service expenses, and other miscellaneous expenses.

2) Harvard Business School

Situated in Boston, and founded in 1908, Harvard Business School is one of the most recognizable business schools in the world and ranks at or near the top of almost every MBA specialization.

Corporate restructuring which is a very in-demand course lately is the specialization of HBS.

Of course, the fee structure would be a little higher for this Dream school of many, US$110,740 is for single students, married MBA would pay US$128,902, a married student with one child would pay US$144,670- according to the academic year 2019-20. The higher fee for married folk is on account of boarding and lodging for their partner and child.

1) The Wharton School

Often considered as a powerhouse in finance, here comes the table topper- The Wharton school.

Wharton bagged perfect scores for career placements and employer reputation and 98 for research strength. With a perfect score in career placements and employer reputation, Wharton scores 98 in research strength which is more than any school in the list.

Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance is a great initiative by the school which will aim to understand and stimulate cutting-edge teaching and research as well as student and industry engagement focused on the revolutionary impact of information technology on financial services. It will also allow students to focus on more industries and the impact of IT on financial services, which is very important in the 21 century.

A whopping fees of US$ 111,900 for an academic year is the sting of the otherwise perfect course at the most prestigious business school for finance. But do you expect anything less at a B-School that specializes in teaching you how to mint money?

TOP B-Schools In India for MBA in Finance:

These are top Schools for an MBA in finance in India:

IIM Ahmedabad

IIM Bangalore

IIM Calcutta

Xavier School Of Management (XLRI), Jamshedpur

Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Lucknow

S P Jain Institute of Management and Research (SPJIMR), Mumbai

Management Development Institute, Gurugram

Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), Mumbai


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MBA in Finance FAQs

Q. What is the fees for MBA in finance?

A. A. On average, MBA in finance fees is somewhat between Rs 7-10 lakh.

Q: Does MBA in Finance require Maths?

A. Though maths is a prerequisite for all MBA programs, specialization in finance demands a stronghold over mathematics and it could be the advantage is you will study accounting, economics, and finance which all includes number game.

Q: What is the eligibility for MBA in Finance?

A. 50% marks in aggregate in your graduation is the criteria to apply for the course. It is also the same for MBA general.

Q: What is the duration of MBA in Finance course?

A: A total of 4 semesters in 2 years and a summer internship in the first year is the overall duration of the course.

Q: I am a Science graduate. Can I pursue MBA in Finance?

A: Yes, as you don’t need knowledge of accounting and maths of class 12.

Q: What are the job profiles for an MBA in Finance graduates?

A: Financial Analyst, Finance Manager, Senior Business Analyst, Senior Finance Analyst are the best opportunities for finance students.

Q: What is the average CTC offered to MBA in Finance in India?

A: Recent reports by payscale.com claim a salary of Rs6.50 lakh per annum for MBA finance in India.

Q: I have completed CS. Is MBA Finance a good option for me?

A: Yes, CS and MBA is a good combination in the finance world.

Q: Which MBA institutes are best for MBA Finance degree?

A: Institutes like IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Bangalore, JBIMS Mumbai, FMS DU, and SPJIMR Mumbai are some of the best in business.

Q: Is MBA in Finance a tough course to pursue?

A: MBA in Finance is as tricky as any other MBA program. Extra mathematics and statistical data make it a bit tougher.

Q: MBA in Finance or MBA in Marketing, which specialization has more scope?

A: It totally depends upon the interest first and then the skill of an individual. Both the specializations are one of its kind and strong pillars of every business organization.

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