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What are the sub branches of study in the finance area

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Paul’s Answer

Hi Devin:

There are several sub branches of areas to study in the subject of finance. It really depends on which college that you attend, because each one is different regarding their course offerings and majors. I would consult with each college or universities online catalog to determine what is available. Here are some of the sub branches in the areas of finance:


Corporate Finance: This can include specific courses in the areas of budgeting, capital management, accounting, financial analysis, portfolio management and other subjects.

Investments: This includes courses and emphasis on such subjects as stocks, bonds, securities and other financial elements involved with investment banking.

Economics: An emphasis in the area of economics can also be a sub category in finance. This includes studies in the areas of finance and public policy analysis, financial markets and other securities.

Business Law: I have seen many majors in finance later become financial attorneys after completing law school. Non-profit law in relation to finance has been offered in many law schools

Commercial Real Estate: Course here will emphasize and analysis in business plans, financial analysis of potential buyers and other elements of real estate markets.

Insurance: This includes actuary studies, risk management, underwriting and corporate financial issues.


There are many potential combinations that each college can offer you, and the opportunities are very large for individuals both in the public and private sector.


Paul recommends the following next steps:

Research the various college catalogs for the business majors and their specific course offerings in each area of the finance major.
Contact an advisor at your college or university of choice and determine which courses you will need to complete successfully to reach your academic goal.
visit the career center at the college to determine which areas of emphasis past finance majors have taken in their path towards success.
Thank you comment icon Hi I wanted to add to Paul's response. There are also sub areas of finance study related to the financial markets - i.e. equities (stocks) and fixed income (bonds). I found that most of the finance courses I took in undergraduate and graduate school were pretty quantitative (lots of bond math, NPV and IRR analysis), however the practical application of finance often relates more to the underlying business dynamics (i.e. understanding the business trends, why a business needs to invest a certain amount of money or what is driving revenue, etc.). I hope this is helpful. Ashley Craig
Thank you comment icon This is a really solid and comprehensive answer with quality next steps. Greg Springer
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Dwayne’s Answer

Hi Devin,

There are so many options. You must find your passion. I enjoy homes. As an appraiser, they pay me to go through other people’s homes. Kinda cool and kinda gross. I’ve been in some pretty amazing homes and I have been in some real creepy and hoarder homes .

The key is to find your passion and find something that will make you want to go to work every day. Money, although is important, will not motivate you to go to work nearly as much as finding something to do that you enjoy. Also, the key to a happy life is being friendly to EVERYONE. You never know where your career will take you best to be friends with everyone. Lastly, never gossip or tell bad stories about anyone; no matter how juicy or fun it may be. You May find short term gains but in the long run it will come back and bite you. Trust me on this!



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Greg’s Answer

Broadly speaking I view the major branches as Corporate Finance and Investment Finance, though there are many flavors.

Corporate Finance would be the CFO of a company, a financial analyst, or other positions that help companies align their strategies and values with the resources that they have.

Investment Finance would be a stock broker, financial advisor for individuals, or someone that helps you plan your financial future.

Each uses similar skills, but Corporate Finance will be more focused on turning values into strategy into tactics. Investment Finance will be more concerned with the maximization of value within Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds, etc...
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