On the MSc Financial Economics course you will develop the specialist skills and knowledge that are required for a successful career as an economist in the financial sector. You will also be provided with the training necessary to undertake research in the area of financial economics at PhD level. You will learn how international financial markets link and interact with the wider economy, and on completion you will be prepared for a career with potential employers such as investment and commercial banks, the asset management industry, consulting firms, public institutions such as central banks and treasury departments and regulatory agencies.
- Employability: In an increasingly competitive job market, a globally focused qualification such as financial economics is highly desirable. Upon graduating you will possess the skills, knowledge and ability to work in a multicultural environment as a professional financial economist. We put an emphasis on developing your CV and interview skills through the support of our Careers Centre.
- Oxford location: As one of the most famous cities in the world, Oxford offers everything you could want as a student and more. It is a bustling and stunning cosmopolitan city with excellent shopping, restaurants, cafes, pubs and clubs. Oxford is just over an hour from the hub of business life in London and has easy access to international airports. The city is also home to a growing hi-tech community where many businesses are located.
- Teaching and learning: The Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics is part of Oxford Brookes University Business School that received the highest award from the Higher Education Funding Council for England to become a Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning. This course is led by highly research-active staff members whose research projects are closely integrated into the modules they teach.
- Student support: As a student you will be assigned to an Academic Adviser who will provide both academic and pastoral support. Within the Business School you will have access to Student Support Co-ordinators whose role it is to provide guidance related to both your course and university-wide administrative issues. They organise a range of events to help you adjust to postgraduate study and are able to help you get advice about any issues you may have during your studies.
- Resources/facilities: Our Postgraduate Centre is a stylish building solely for Business School postgraduate students. Facilities include a state-of-the-art lecture theatre and seminar rooms, along with the Postgraduate Lounge which gives our postgraduate students exclusive 24 hours a day access to PCs and common study areas.
For more information about postgraduate study at the Business School, come to one of our Business School Open Days, or visit our web pages.Compulsory modules
Pre-sessional intensive maths training sessions: These are non-credit, intensive maths training sessions to be run for two weeks, starting in the week before the start of Semester 1. Attendance is required.
Advanced Microeconomics: You will develop knowledge of advanced microeconomic theory and its applications through this module. You will learn about the following topics: consumer theory, producer theory, general equilibrium, choice under uncertainty, theory of the firm, imperfect information, public goods and economics of information.
Econometrics: Econometrics is a core module of the MSc in Financial Economics. You will learn how to conduct applied research in economics for the purposes of your dissertation and for future research examinations. The Econometrics module will enable you to investigate relationships between economic variables and conduct hypothesis testing, and you will gain hands-on experience with statistical packages, such as STATA, and data manipulation and analysis.
Financial Markets and Institutions: In this module you will examine the advantages and disadvantages of markets and institutions as ways of linking users and providers of funds within financial systems. In addition, you will be introduced to a number of the quantitative modelling techniques which play a central role in modern financial theory and empirical analysis. With regard to markets, the focus is on issues of asset pricing, market efficiency and the challenge to the efficient markets viewpoint which has been mounted by theorists of behavioural finance. You will examine the transformation of the financial sector as a result of globalisation, technical innovation and regulatory change. To conclude you will examine the regulatory issues and the outcome of the global financial crisis which began in 2007.
Financial Modelling: In this module you will develop an understanding of financial modelling and techniques of financial analysis, and their applications. It combines the development of practical modelling and analysis skills, mainly using spread sheets, with conceptual understanding and critical analysis of financial modelling approaches.
Research Methods: Research Methods is a core module of the MSc in Financial Economics. This will prepare you for research in economics as well as for work as a professional economist. You will be introduced to the necessary tools for undertaking independent research and working towards the successful completing of your master's thesis. The module includes training in aspects of research such as: aims, objectives and research philosophy; literature review and database search; evaluation of existing research, research strategy and design; micro and macro data utilisation, experiments and questionnaire design; use of statistical packages; data analysis; writing up and dissemination of findings.
Industrial Organisation: This module will aim to develop students’ knowledge of game theory and its applications in understanding internal firm organisation and market strategies. The module will encompass a number of solution concepts for normal form and extensive form games, as well as their advantages and disadvantages. In addition, students will be shown how game theoretical concepts can be extended to solve economic problems that can be seen in everyday life. The module will also introduce students to recent developments in behavioural economics and its implications for business, politics and public policy and for economics. Students will be familiarised with the methodology of experimental economics and how it can be used to empirically test economic theory.
Topics in Economics: You will study topics in economics with the viewpoint of building upon the research strengths of the economics teaching team. Your studies will cover topics that are significant in current debates on theoretical and applied issues in different specialisations in economies. You will become aware of the most recent developments in economic theory and practice, and therefore the topics covered may vary from year to year.
Dissertation: The dissertation is an opportunity for you to carry out an in depth investigation into a topic of financial economics which is of particular interest to you. It should have an appropriately clear focus and be an investigation based on primary and/or secondary data, justified and supported by detailed reference to relevant theories and concepts from literature.Elective Modules
Economic Growth: In this module you will explore both theoretical and empirical developments that have taken place in the economic growth field in the last decades and study both exogenous and endogenous growth theories. You will explore empirical evidence on the process of economic growth and on the sources of income and growth differences across countries. You will develop an understanding of the complex relationships between economic growth and variables such as institutions, income inequality and corruption.
Industrial Organisation: In this module you will develop your knowledge of game theory and its applications in understanding internal firm organisation and market strategies. You will encounter a number of solution concepts for normal form and extensive form games, as well as their advantages and disadvantages. In addition, you will be shown how game theoretical concepts can be extended to solve economic problems that can be seen in everyday life. You will be introduced to developments in behavioural economics and its implications for business, politics and public policy, and you will become familiar with the methodology of experimental economics and how it can be used to empirically test economic theory.
International Finance: You will develop a comprehensive understanding of the international financial system on this module. You will adopt two perspectives: first that of an analyst of the international system, examining the operation of foreign exchange and derivative markets, and theories of exchange rate determination; second that of the financial manager within a multi-national enterprise (MNE) facing issues of currency risk management and international investment. The approach you will take will involve critical evaluation and practical application of theoretical and empirical developments in the field of international finance.Approach to assessment
Each module is assessed individually. This programme has a balance of assessment methods using a mixture of coursework and examination.Attendance pattern
This is a full-time programme. Attendance is compulsory. Modules run from Monday to Friday.Teaching and learning
On this course you will benefit from active learning approaches such as seminars and workshops, discussions and problem-solving activities rather than an approach focused solely on lectures and note-taking. This innovative approach to teaching will help your learning experience to be both vibrant and engaging. You will also develop skills in critical enquiry along with a firm grounding in business practice which, together, will enable you to confidently take on the demands of graduate jobs in leading international organisations.Specialist facilities
Our Postgraduate Centre is a stylish building solely for Business School postgraduate students. Facilities include a state-of-the-art lecture theatre and seminar rooms, along with the Postgraduate Lounge which gives our postgraduate students exclusive 24 hours a day access to PCs and common study areas.
The Wheatley Campus library specialises in economics and business information resources. The majority of the economics books and printed journals are located here. Library databases containing journal articles, economic data and statistics are available 24/7 worldwide. The Library has individual and group study spaces and specialist Subject Librarians to handle your enquiries and training needsHow this course helps you develop
- You will develop an advanced understanding of causal economic relationships, the functioning of (international) financial markets and the impact of economic policy decisions on them.
- You will acquire expert knowledge in how global financial markets and the wider economy interact. You will develop the ability to apply your knowledge to analyse complex economic and financial policy issues.
- You will gain expert skills in mathematical modelling and statistical analysis. You will become familiar with modeling and empirical techniques and receive training to use the most widely employed statistical packages.
- You will graduate with highly relevant and marketable skills that enable you to pursue a career in the financial industry (banks, financial institutions) as well as in public institutions such as central banks or international institutions like the World Bank and the IMF.
- You will have the opportunity to meet with professional economists through internal seminars and guest speakers, for intellectual discussion as well as networking.
How Brookes supports postgraduate students
We take great pride in the pastoral, academic and career support we provide our postgraduate students. Our Student Support Co-ordinators ensure that whatever problem you may have is addressed rapidly and effectively. Our dedicated careers centre provides advice and workshops to help acquire those key skills needed to develop your career. The programme director and all academic staff provide open office hours so that you can walk in without an appointment to discuss academic or pastoral concerns. A dedicated and skilled team of postgraduate programme administrators ensure effective support is provided to you in a friendly and approachable way.
You will have a comprehensive induction programme which enables you to get to know your programme director, tutors and student support co-ordinators before you formally commence your studies. We ensure that all students on the programme get to know each other well in the first week and form strong social networks.
Supporting your learning
From academic advisers and support co-ordinators to specialist subject librarians and other learning support staff, we want to ensure that you get the best out of your studies.Personal support services
We want your time at Brookes to be as enjoyable and successful as possible. That's why we provide all the facilities you need to be relaxed, happy and healthy throughout your studies.Research highlights
Research within Economics and Finance focuses on applied economics and is led by highly research-active staff.
Professor Scott McDonald has major research interests in the fields of international trade and development, climate change, social accounting matrices and computable general equilibrium models and has extensive consultancy experience with a number of international institutions and governments.
Dr. Pritam Singh has published extensively on the political and economic development in South Asia, India and the Punjab region and more recently on the global economic and ecological crisis. He has focused on development, secularism and religious revivalism; and nationalism, development and human rights. He approaches these issues from the viewpoint of the relationship between globalisation and changing identities.
On this programme you will benefit from working closely with our highly research-active staff members. You can attend the seminars and workshops to become familiar with the staff members' current research projects and also to interact with guest presenters from leading academic and professional institutions.
Research areas and clusters
The Business School has a strengthening research culture and supports an expanding community of research active staff and students, with wide-ranging interests in many specialist areas within the general field of business and management.
Within economics and finance a research cluster in applied economics has been developed. The focus of this cluster is on development and environmental economics, labour economics and monetary policy and financial crises. Research results have been published in a wide range of economics journals including Journal of Development Economics, Economics Letters, Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Empirical Economics, Regional Studies, World Development, Energy Economics, Ecological Economics Journal, Economic Modelling, Contemporary South Asia, American Journal of Economics and Sociology and Journal of Post Keynesian Economics. Research by the group has been supported by grants from a wide range of national and international bodies and members of the group have provided advice to a range of national and international organisations including the World Bank, European Commission, Resources for the Future, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, UK Department for International Development and ILO.