Careers You Can Pursue With an MBA in Finance

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published February 15, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Finance MBAs are master's degrees in business administration involving several courses related to finance. With a finance MBA, you can work in commercial banking, investment banking, corporate finance and financial planning among other business sectors. If you have an MBA in finance, it's important to understand all of the careers you could pursue, the duties and salary of the various careers. In this article, we provide a list of careers you can get with a finance MBA.

What is an MBA?

A master of business administration (MBA) is a degree recognized internationally designed to develop necessary skills in business administration and management. The master of business administration degrees are not limited to business. For instance, an MBA graduate can also work in a managerial position in private industries, public sectors and the government. The MBA programs entail a core curriculum, including marketing, economics, operations and accounting. There is an optional subject in the core subjects that allows you to follow your personal and professional interests.

What is an MBA in finance?

A master of business degree in finance is a course that combines finance and business administration to prepare learners for job markets. You can complete the degree within one to two years. Although courses differ with schools, MBA in finance subjects include:

  • Portfolio management

  • Investments

  • Borrowing

  • Corporate investment management

  • Securities analysis

  • Disbursements

  • Management of hedge funds

  • Small businesses and corporate finance

  • Fundraising

  • International finance

  • Collections

  • Coverage of international financial situation

  • Fixed-income security

  • Global markets

  • Macroeconomics

  • Valuation

Finance MBA projects and coursework include international microeconomics and macroeconomics, stock market pitching projects and financial modeling. The coursework consists of entrepreneurship projects based on acquisitions, mergers, design, real estate investments, investing strategies and development.

Requirements and the structure of finance MBA

Like most MBA specializations, in finance MBA, you'll need a strong background in mathematics, along with managerial and communication skills demanded by business institutes. MBA courses have become popular globally, and to get admission to the best finance MBA school, you'll also need competitive GMAT scores.

Finance MBA is a two-year program, although it can take you less or longer than the two years. In the first part of the program, students complete the core subjects. In the second part, finance MBA students focus on finance tools. In the second part, students must complete financial internships to provide financial consulting services to businesses.

Careers you can get with an MBA in finance

MBA in finance increases your credibility and helps you learn additional skills to help employment recruiters notice you. With an MBA in finance, you can improve money management, communication, leadership and critical thinking skills. The degree can also boost your chances of getting better pay and expand professional networks. If you have an MBA in finance, it's important to understand all of the careers you could pursue. Some careers you can get with an MBA in finance include:

1. Credit manager

National average salary: $29,815 per year

Primary duties: A credit manager researches and evaluates the creditworthiness of clients. Credit managers help a company create credit score models that predict risks, approving or rejecting loan requests basing the results on potential losses, profits and credibility. Calculating, setting interest rates, negotiating loan terms, monitoring payments and maintaining records of loan applications are other duties handled by a credit manager. Credit managers also manage loan renewals, debt settlement and ensure lending procedures and policies comply with regulations. Credit managers also update, review and develop credit policies.

2. Accountant

National average salary: $54,624 per year

Primary duties: Accountants prepare accounts and tax returns. Accountants also administer payroll and control expenditures and income. Auditing financial records, presenting and compelling financial reports, business plans, financial statements, budgets and commentaries are also the duties of an accountant. Accountants forecast and analyze financial risks, deal with insolvency cases and negotiate business deals. They also offer tax planning services and analyze business plans and accounts.

Read more: Learn About Being an Accountant

3. Finance manager

National average salary: $66,230 per year

Primary duties: In nearly every private firm, government agency and public organization, you'll find a finance manager. Finance managers supervise activities like the development of financial procedures, financial strategies, long-term plans, preparation of financial reports and directing investments according to a company's objectives. Finance managers direct the budget processes of a company. After financial managers forecast revenue and expenditures, they determine financial needs with the heads of various departments and allocate the resources. Finance managers also monitor financial reports to protect an organization from losing financial resources. The finance manager monitors the report by analyzing data to produce accurate projections and statements.

Read more: Learn About Being a Finance Manager

4. Grant manager

National average salary: $67,378 per year

Primary duties: Grant managers manage, support and implement grant requirements to oversee if grants are used according to the financial and operational needs of an organization. Developing and identifying strategies for optimizing the administration process of the grants and supervising fundraising teams for proper coordination are also the responsibilities of a grant manager. Grant managers identify, research and evaluate opportunities where they can get more grants. Grant managers also prepare a budget and financial plan with the finance department and analyze budget trends before making recommendations to help with cost control. Grant managers also oversee invoicing, accounting, administrative functions and reporting.

5. Financial analyst

National average salary: $71,402 per year

Primary duties: Financial analysts assess financial reports like balance sheets and cash flow. They determine how finances impact the operations of the company. Financial analysts present data interpretation and analysis compellingly and clearly to facilitate decision-making for finance and operations personnel. They forecast future business opportunities to help sales teams and product developers. Creating tools and systems that improve data analysis, keeping monetary data secure and documenting activities involving funds for future reference are other responsibilities of a financial analyst. The analysts also inform clients how new developments, regulations or laws can impact a company's banking and finance sector.

Read more: Learn About Being a Financial Analyst

6. Budget analyst

National average salary: $80,851 per year

Primary duties: A budget analyst helps both private and public organizations plan their finances. They monitor how an institution spends and also prepares the budget. Budget managers also review budget proposals by a manager for compliance, accuracy and completeness. Estimating the future financial needs of a business is another duty of a budget analyst.

7. Financial controlle**r**

National average salary: $87,178 per year

Primary duties: Financial controllers, also known as comptrollers, are the chief accountant of a business. They oversee accounting activities by ensuring ledgers are accurate and reflect the total amount of funds coming in and out. The comptrollers are also responsible for accounts record keeping. Other duties may include managing information technologies and reporting sales tax, federal income tax, insurance and outside CPA audits. Setting up bank accounts is another responsibility of a financial controller.

Read more: Learn About Being a Financial Controller

8. Investment banker

National average salary: $89,360 per year

Primary duties: An investment banker's main responsibilities are connecting investors to a business that requires financing. By structuring the initial public offerings (IPO), an investment banker helps a private corporation become public. The IPOs follow strict financial regulations, and to undergo the IPO, companies must meet all the requirements. Investment bankers are also responsible for mergers and acquisitions. They analyze potential losses or gains before developing a detailed agreement of mergers and acquisitions. Investment bankers show their clients how they can structure merger and acquisition deals. Analyzing financial information, making recommendations and maintaining financial data are other duties of investment banker.

9. Management consultant

National average salary: $97,520 per year

Primary duties: Management consultants identify a business's existing problems that negatively impact profitability and harming a company's brand image. By analyzing business structure, management consultants search for inefficiency that can affect a company's bottom line. They also analyze financial data to find ways of increasing the revenue of a business. To raise a company's profitability, management consultants also evaluate management staff by monitoring behavior and performance.

10. Portfolio manager

National average salary: $99,315 per year

Primary duties: Portfolio managers work with a team of researchers and analysts to create investing plans and decisions for the company's portfolios. They also review and monitor trading activities for compliance and regulatory purposes to ensure they come up with suitable trade decisions. The specialists design, implement and maintain business portfolios. Portfolio managers develop procedures and policies, oversee trading and monitor post- and pre-trade compliance. Portfolio professionals also research and analyze and report portfolio issues to the management of the organization. They also analyze portfolio holdings and account transactions, after which they plan how to resolve violations identified.

11. Chief financial officer

National average salary: $134,092 per year

Primary duties: The duties of chief financial officers (CFO) vary with the size of organizations. CFOs handle financial operations. They coordinate accounting and finance departments to meet the fiscal responsibilities of a company and to set goals. A CFO helps with the strategic financial planning and contributes to an organization's strategic operations. They also participate in merger and divestiture activities and acquisitions. The executive CFOs help with investment and financing supervision, forecasting and budgeting for activities. They can plan, coordinate and give directions for an organization's budget preparation. Chief financial officers review and approve contracts, financial reports, capital expenditures and budgets from various departments.

Read more: Learn About Being a CFO (Chief Financial Officer)

12. Vice president of finance

National average salary: $162,169 per year

Primary duties: The vice president (VP) of finance is an essential member of an organization's decision-making team. The VP of finance works with other seniors to improve and drive growth in a company's operational processes. The VP of finance also coordinates financial analysis, reporting and planning. Developing financial reports of operations, gathering, analyzing and comparing performance data of a company is also a duty of the VP of finance. They also recommend ways of improving revenue growth and resource allocation. A VP of finance also prepares financial materials for stakeholders like the board of directors. The materials provide easy access to financial information.

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