Below are just a few of the many career paths you can take with a finance degree. Check out these websites to learn more about careers in your major!
Responsible for making decisions that will help companies optimally invest their capital, reduce and manage their cost structure, and better forecast the company’s future. Typical responsibilities of a corporate finance analyst are analyzing potential investments by modeling financial impacts, creating financial budgets and forecasts that help company leadership prepare for the future of the business, and collect and analyze data trends to propose actionable insights. Entry-level roles include financial analysts, treasury analysts, and cost analysts. A unique aspect of corporate finance is interacting with all functions of the business such as marketing, supply chain, and accounting.
Responsible for providing banking and financial services to corporations. Banking services include treasury management services and foreign exchange and derivatives strategies and execution. Financing solutions include lines of credit, term loans, asset securitizations, and equipment leases/loans. Typical career options include relationship manager (RM), underwriter (UW), and product partner. Important skills to have are financial analysis, sales, and communication skills.
One of the more demanding yet educational career paths available to finance majors due to the long hours and high level of responsibility. Some responsibilities include advising large corporations on strategic and financial decisions, servicing the acquisition of a successful competitor, and facilitating a company’s stock market debut. Investment banking is sought after due to the level of accounting, valuation, and overall corporate finance skills that are required and taught throughout the course of the banking analyst programs. Many analysts move on to attractive roles at a variety of possible employers such as hedge funds, private equity, and venture capital.
Asset and Wealth Management
Involves the direction of a client’s portfolio by an institution or individual. Institutional asset managers typically invest and direct large amounts of capital on behalf of clients such as pension funds, insurance companies, and endowments. Wealth management, which deals primarily with individuals and families, includes investment and brokerage services and financial and retirement planning. The most demanding and sought-after roles in wealth management are typically found in private banking, which focuses on advising high net worth individuals and family trusts and requires a more personally tailored level of client service.
Provides expert advice to C-Suite executives of organizations on major strategic, financial, and operational issues. Organizations hire consultants in light of major disruptions to their business (e.g., acquisitions and divestitures, technology disruptions). Consulting firms hire undergraduates for analyst roles. Responsibilities include identifying business problems, conducting analyses, providing recommendations, and implementing solutions. Consulting career paths are known for their “exit opportunities” into high-level corporate roles and graduate school.
Finance Industry Snapshot
Find your future in finance! Check out this finance industry snapshot created by the Forté Foundation. This is a great resource to explore industries that interest you the most.