Finance and Investment BSc modules
Year one | Year two | Year three
Year one (Level 4)
Block 1: Global Financial Markets and Institutions
An integral part of a well-functioning economy is the establishment and smooth operation of a developed financial system. The system, consisting of markets, institutions, individuals and the relevant governing bodies, allows the circulation of money within the economy by assisting in the flow of capital. The objective of this module is to introduce students to these areas of banking and financial intermediation. You will be exposed to topics such as the role of central bank, the structure and function of financial institutions, the role and functioning of bond, equity and money markets, financial crises, regulation and control.
Block 2: Mathematics and Statistics for Financial Decision Making
In the examination of real-world phenomena, such as events in the financial markets, social scientists often engage themselves in the process of collecting and analysing data from various markets, entities and indicators. Subsequently, such real-world phenomena are modelled using the collected data. This helps scientists and financial analysts draw meaningful conclusions about the existence and nature of the effects, and subsequently form economically justifiable decisions and recommendations. This module aims to familiarise students with the mathematical tools, the fundamental principles of statistical methods and probability theory which are necessary for understanding and explaining economic and finance relationships; and, to create the foundations for understanding the complex mathematical models used in finance applications that they will be exposed later in the programme.
Block 3: Essentials of Economics
This module aims to introduce students to the study of mainstream macro- and microeconomics and their core principles. The module will facilitate an understanding of the way economists approach and analyse societal problems at individual, firm, industry, and national levels. In addition to covering the theories in economics, the module will look to apply the concepts to real world decisions of regulators, managers, and individuals.
Block 4: Business Intelligence and Financial Data Analysis
This module is designed to give students an appreciation of the volume of data available to organisations and the opportunity to apply Business Intelligence (BI) to such data to analyse, extrapolate and extract further insights, in order to develop meaningful information and knowledge that can be used in a multitude of ways to improve efficiency and enhance organisational performance. This module specifically explores one particular BI tool commonly used in many organisations, being Microsoft Excel (Excel), giving students an understanding of the functionality available in Excel and how this can be utilised to improve efficiency and add value. Students will apply such understanding to analyse real world financial data via the use of popular financial databases including Bloomberg, FAME, FT.COM, among others, and present professional reports to help colleagues and supervisors make better and informed decisions.
Year two (Level 5)
Block 1: Financial Reporting and Analysis
A technically oriented module intended to develop a high level of skill utilising commonly and regularly used financial accounting procedures and techniques. Students will have the opportunity to develop knowledge and understanding of accounting standards, techniques, procedures and principles that result in the production of financial reports for various types of businesses and governments. They will also be introduced to the skills required to analyse and interpret such statements to derive informative conclusions about the financial health of a business or government fiscal sustainability.
Block 2: Corporate Finance
Finance can be simply described as the branch of economic science concerned with the acquisition of money, the allocation and management of money resources, and the maximisation of wealth via optimum investment decision-making. This module introduces students to some of the main principles of corporate and governmental financial decision-making and their impact in real life financial decisions. Students are introduced into the essential parts of corporate finance, including the financing decisions, the dividend policy, the investment decisions, and short-term working capital management.
Block 3: Econometrics
Econometrics is the branch of statistics that deals with the measurement and analysis of economic data. The process of analysing economic data with the purpose of providing empirical content to finance and economic theories and either verify them or refuting them takes place through the use of econometric applications. This module extends students' knowledge of the area of economic analysis and modelling by introducing students to the scope and methodology of econometrics. Students will be introduced to the theory and practical aspects of the basic econometric modelling technique such as the Classical Linear Regression and the Multiple Regression models. The module also deals with the modelling and analysis of financial time-series such as prices, returns, exchange rates, interest rates, etc. Further, the module will introduce students to non-linear relationships in finance and the examination of the most commonly used in empirical finance non-linear forecasting models.
Block 4: Asset Pricing and Risk Management
The objective of this module is to introduce students to the examination and analysis of accounting, financial and economic data and the use of various quantitative techniques to evaluate the expected return and risk of traditional financial assets, including equity and bond. This will be based on the introduction of key characteristics of these securities and how their markets are operated within the financial system. Students will also learn various forms of risks associated with these assets as well as alternative techniques to manage those risks to attain desirable risk-return trade-off.
Year three (Level 6)
Block 1: Derivatives and Alternative Investments
Over the last three decades derivatives became the largest financial asset class in the world, exceeding the combined value of both bond and equity markets. At the same time, alternative assets such as real estate, commodities, private equity, among others, have been traditionally an important strand of investment which plays an essential role in enhancing the risk-return trade-off of investors’ portfolio. Derivatives and alternative investments thus form the standard financial asset classes, and a high level of understanding of such products and markets is essential for all finance professionals. The module focuses on the major derivatives contracts, including futures, forwards, options and swaps, and on the uses of these instruments in hedging, regulatory arbitrage, price discovery, arbitrage and speculation. Students will also be introduced to key alternative assets such as real estate, commodity and cryptocurrencies and how investment in these assets add values to the overall portfolio performance.
Block 2: Investment and Portfolio Management
The purpose of this module is to introduce students to the modern theories and techniques used in portfolio management. A complete view of the investment process will be examined, starting from investment policy statements, fundamental and technical analysis, performance measurement and evaluation, and the presentation of performance results. Students will be exposed to various asset classes, including equity, bond, alternative assets. Students are invited to research and develop their own efficient and optimum trading strategy using real market data from the London Stock Exchange or other International equity markets.
Block 3: Artificial Intelligence and Financial Applications
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is rapidly changing the world as we know it and has been described as the 'fourth industrial revolution'. In the financial sector, AI is revolutionising numerous operational models and practices, including lending management, investment and trading, personalised banking, risk management, insurance premia and fraud detection. This module introduces students to the history, fundamental methods and applications of Artificial Intelligence in a financial context. Students will be able to critically evaluate the past, current, and future developments in Artificial Intelligence. They will be able to identify the major areas of Artificial Intelligence and be able to apply fundamental algorithms in each of the areas using appropriate computer software. Students will also be introduced to financial implications of Artificial Intelligence and practice with designing and creating applications using popular coding packages.
Block 4: Ethics, Governance and Sustainability in Finance
This module is designed to critically examine the position and changing role of ethics, governance and sustainability in finance. It introduces students to the inter-relationship between finance and society by examining social, environmental and ethical frameworks in ensuring the efficiency of the financial systems. Part of the module will focus on the ethical practices and professional standards of practitioners working in the financial industry. This provides guidelines for students to ethically and professionally perform various activities while working in the financial market.