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Understanding risk and reward

A career in Finance may involve structuring and executing complex equity and debt capital transactions for companies, or managing funds and other assets for investors. While competition for these positions can be tough, the profession remains a highly attractive career path for MBA graduates.


The Finance emphasis will develop your skillsets in financial analysis and deepen your understanding of financial instruments and institutions. With this knowledge, you are positioned to help firm management to create value as they explore investment proposals and financing options, consider alternative ways to manage cash and dividends, and manage acquisitions and divestitures. 

Topics covered

Specific topics include the process for issuing and underwriting new debt and equity securities to support strategic and financial buyers. You will also learn key legal and regulatory constraints on corporate activity and deepen your understanding of financial statements, the theories and techniques that underlie the construction and management of optimal investment portfolios, and the risk/return trade-offs that are appropriate for different types of deals or investors. 

"It’s an established truth of investing that keeping high amounts of cash can act as a drag on fund performance. It's also wrong."

-Mikhail Simutin, assistant professor of finance, in an online article

Elective courses in this emphasis explore key elements of the investment management process, including development of objectives and constraints and implementation and management of equity, bond, and balanced portfolios. The Value Investing course focuses on the fundamental value-based approach to investing, e.g., finding undervalued companies based on their estimated intrinsic values. Analysis & Management of Fixed Income Securities focuses on fixed income securities, providing the tools to analyze and understand various bond structures, yield curve strategies and different fixed income products across the credit spectrum. The Risk Modelling & Financial Trading Strategies course uses cases to simulate the risks and opportunities associated with particular securities or strategies to allow you to learn how to make good investment and risk management decisions when faced with uncertainty and quantifiable risks.

Requirements to complete the emphasis in Finance 

Complete five half courses (2.5 FCEs) with at least two half courses (1.0 FCE) from the list of main courses. See the Registrar's Office for more detailed information. 


  • Taxation and Decision-Making
  • Financial Statement Analysis
  • Business Analysis and Valuation
  • Corporate Financing
  • Security Analysis and Portfolio Management
  • Options & Futures Markets
  • Mergers & Acquisitions


  • Financial Distress and Insolvency
  • Special Topics in Accounting: Financial Fraud and Management Control
  • Financial Management
  • Risk Modeling and Financial Trading Strategies
  • Financial Institutions and Capital Markets
  • International Financial Management
  • Advanced Derivatives
  • Financial Risk Management
  • Analysis and Management of Fixed Income Securities
  • Value Investing
  • Sustainable Finance
  • Private Equity & Entrepreneurial Finance
  • The Management of Private Wealth
  • Special Topics in Finance: Fintech
  • How Banks Work: Management in a New Technological Age
  • Machine Learning and Financial Innovation

For detailed information on each elective course, please see our MBA electives guide

Finance resources at Rotman

Rotman is the ideal place to build your career in Finance, as the School is located just blocks away from Bay Street, North America's second largest financial centre after New York City. 

Career paths for Finance

There are at least four career paths in Finance. A first path is as an investment banker, advising firms and financial buyers and structuring large and complex financial transactions, such as debt issuances, equity issuances and major acquisitions and divestitures. A second path is as a private equity professional in venture capital or leveraged buyout firms. A third path is through the management of non-financial corporations, including executive leadership roles, corporate treasurers and controllers, and corporate development and strategy. A fourth path is as a finance consultant, providing services to firms and financial buyers, as they consider alternative strategies for value creation that involve and large and complex financial transactions.

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