MSc Finance & Economics

Course Details

Eight compulsory modules cover key material in finance, economics and econometrics while two optional modules allow you to focus on your preferences. Every year we offer optional modules, available through various study routes, delivered here at WBS. Please note that availability and delivery modes may vary.

Modules are taught by staff from both WBS and the Department of Economics at Warwick through a combination of lectures, classes and computer lab sessions.

Assessment is a mix of exams and coursework with your dissertation bringing all your learning together at the end.

Lectures & classes
Lectures introduce key theories, concepts and economic models. In classes you will solve financial problems and numerical exercises, analyse case studies and make presentations of research published in academic journals.

Global experience
As part of a recent review of the MSc Finance & Economics, WBS has launched an exciting new compulsory module on Ethics, Financial Regulation and Corporate Governance. This module will be run in conjunction with at least one of WBS’ key European business school partners, and as such will offer the opportunity to study overseas, providing you with access to contextualised content and a global voice on the concepts of ethics and financial market regulation. 


Lab work
Lab work will give you hands-on experience of using software to perform finance-related calculations and conduct realistic simulations. Econometric methods are also taught in the lab, so you will learn to apply econometric software to empirical research and financial market estimations.

Your dissertation
A 6,000 word dissertation gives you the opportunity to test and apply techniques and theories you have been learning and to complete an original piece of research. You will be supervised and supported by one of our academic staff or Teaching Associates and will usually submit your dissertation in early September.


Compulsory Modules

Asset Pricing

In this module you will explore the fundamental relationships between investors’ decision-making in the presence of uncertainty (“risk”) and the cross-sectional and inter-temporal properties of the prices and returns of financial assets. 

Corporate Financial Management

Gain an introduction to the principles of corporate finance. The module will illustrate how the basic tools and techniques of modern finance theory can be applied to analyse and improve the investment and financing decisions of the firm.


Gain thorough training in econometrics with an emphasis on empirical modelling of economic and financial data. You will develop the necessary skills to carry out good quality empirical research.

Empirical Finance

Gain an understanding of the theory and practice of financial econometrics, and the tools for the empirical analysis of financial time series and their application. 


Gain advanced training in contemporary macroeconomics.


Gain a graduate-level review of some aspects of microeconomics. The key element will be the notion of individual economic agents acting within the information that is available to them to achieve reasonable outcomes. The importance of rigorous modelling will be stressed, and a problem-solving approach will be used. The module will equip you with some of the essential tools of economic analysis. 

Ethics, Financial Regulation & Corporate Governance

Multiple scandals reported in the press over the past decade have highlighted the ever-increasing role of professional ethics and ethical management practices in everyday business life. Whether it is decisions about tax policy, community engagement, social reporting or compliance with regulations and best practice – ethics is now firmly embedded in every aspect of professional work. Increased levels of accountability, even on the personal liability level as documented in many recent scandals (for example, the Volkswagen emissions scandal), highlight the need for awareness of and reflection on ethical and social responsibility issues of business professionals. 

This module has been designed to give you a deep and comprehensive understanding of ethics in everyday life, in business life, and in the working life of a financial professional.  

The module will contain three main parts:  

  • ethical issues (doing the right thing) 

  • financial regulation of markets and corporate activities (market integrity, competition and consumer satisfaction) 

  • environmental, social and governance performance of investments and their impact on companies. 

This module will be run in conjunction with at least one of WBS’ key European business school partners, and as such will offer the opportunity to study overseas, providing you with access to contextualised content and a global voice on the concepts of ethics and financial market regulation.


The module aims to allow you to synthesise, apply and extend the knowledge you have gained in the taught component of the course. The identification and investigation of a current research topic will help develop your theoretical and practical understanding of current problems in your chosen area, as well as your research and communication skills. 

Research Methodology

The module aims to equip you with cutting-edge research methods alongside other programming skills and access to relevant data sources. You will be provided with training in programming and data handling from the very beginning of the course, to ensure that you have the required skills when needed for workshops and assignments in the core modules. In addition, in term 3 the module will provide a selection of intensive workshops, run by specialists in different (dissertation) subject areas, on methodology typically used in academic research in this area. You will be required to attend two of these sessions whilst starting to work on your dissertation topic. The module will assess programming skills through two small individual assessments and a combination of programming and research methodology skills in an empirical project in one chosen subject area. 

Syllabus outline: 

Computer programming skills: 

  • Logic of programming 

  • Use of matrices, arrays, data types, structures and manipulation. 

  • Good practices with computer programming. 

  • Algorithmic principles in applied research. 

  • Data storage and retrieval. 

Sub-field specific research methodology - students will be required to select 2 out of several sub-field specific research methodology lecture sets, which will cover for example: 

  • Asset pricing: Fama-Macbeth regressions, Constructing and optimizing portfolios. 

  • Corporate finance: Instrumental variables, Quasi-experimental methods (Matching using propensity scores) and event studies. 

Example Optional Modules

Game Theory

Further information can be found on the Department of Economics web pages

Alternative Investments
Gain the insights needed to make well-informed decisions with regard to today’s complex investment management environment.
Behavioural Finance

Psychologists working in the area of behavioural decision-making have evidenced the inadequacies of neoclassical economics. Behavioural finance studies financial markets using models that are less narrow than those based on von Neumann Morgenstern expected utility theory and arbitrage assumptions.

Big Data Analytics

Explore key principles and concepts in big data analytics in a computational social science context. You will cover a range of examples based on big data including detection of societal events, such as elections, riots, disease outbreaks, economic and financial instability, resource shortages, and responses to natural disasters. 

For more information see our press release here.

Derivative Securities

Develop an in-depth understanding of the characteristics of different classes of derivative securities such as forwards and futures, swaps and options; the markets in which these securities are traded; their potential use as instruments for managing risk; methods for valuing these securities; and the application of these methods in other areas of finance.

Financial Reporting & Financial Statement Analysis

Learn how to interpret financial statements in context and apply appropriate models and techniques for company valuation and related business issues. You will also gain an understanding of how accounting provides data for corporate finance analysis.

Financial Risk Management

Gain an understanding of the need for financial risk management, the techniques to measure financial risks according to the regulatory framework, and tools for the management of risk exposure. You will be introduced to quantitative methods of risk measurement and risk management.

Fixed Income & Credit Risk

Get to grips with the tools for the assessment and management of fixed income and credit risk. 

International Financial Management

Extend your knowledge and understanding of the fundamental concepts of international finance, with an emphasis on the operation of the spot and forward foreign exchange markets. Gain first-hand experience with forex markets via empirical data and trading contest, and develop your critical reasoning skills in the context of international financial risk management.

Judgement & Decision-Making

Gain an introduction to the psychology of human judgement and decision making. This field provides the foundation for understanding the decision-making processes involved in financial markets. The module encourages you to: see how the insights from this work can help understand the origins of rational and irrationality in financial decision makers and financial markets; improve your own financial decision-making; gain a broader understanding of decision-making throughout the finance industry.

Mergers and Acquisitions & Corporate Control

This module will introduce you to the basic issues in mergers and acquisitions from corporate finance point of view. The module will be based on the main research papers in the field.  

Practice of Investment Management

Gain a realistic experience of the responsibilities involved in managing money for clients. You will be introduced to practical investment management techniques, building on the work of the modules of the first term. 

Topics in Global Finance

Further information can be found on the Department of Economics web pages

Industrial Economics

Further information can be found on the Department of Economics web pages

Behavioural Economics

Further information can be found on the Department of Economics web pages

See indicative compulsory and optional modules for this course More Less

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