Finance Concentration

Every business depends on sound financial management. Build the foundational skill set needed for a successful career.  

Is your future in financial management, government finance, insurance or real estate? Do you aspire to be CFO or CEO, and manage your business to success? Are you ready to manage money for personal investors or large institutions? Do you have the aptitude and fortitude to succeed in high-stakes equity and venture capital?

Be Career Ready

  • Learn the principles of investment decision-making, valuation and trading, and immediately put them into action
  • Explore where finance meets law in electives like financial policy and strategy, corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions
  • Acquire competencies in risk diversification and portfolio theory, and programming complex models for decision-making
  • Prepare for a quantitative finance career with electives in equity, bond and derivative markets in a curriculum built on advanced mathematics, finance and statistics
  • Gain a comprehensive view of global economics and international finance for a career that can cross borders

Customize your MBA finance interest and increase your marketability by choosing a secondary concentration like analytics or management consulting. Pair finance with your engineering, law or health care dual degree to be better equipped in the business side of your industry.

Take advantage of our immersive action-learning New York City Finance and Law program for a full semester in Manhattan, working with practicing finance and law experts. 

Graduate Programs Office
School of Management
University at Buffalo
203 Alfiero Center
Buffalo, NY 14260-4010

Tel:  716-645-3204
Fax: 716-645-2341
som-apps@buffalo.edu

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Concentration Requirements

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Finance electives must be selected from:

MGA 632LEC Fin Statement Analysis

Development of a framework for the analysis of financial statements: study of the firm's competitive environment and business strategy, critical review of accounting quality, assessment of financial condition, and evaluation of future prospects. Methods for translating forecasts into firm value estimates are studied, as well as the use of the analysis framework in making specific business decisions, such as investing in equity securities and evaluating firms' creditworthiness.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018 | Spring 2018


MGE 602LEC Global Economics

This purpose of this course is to provide business students with six core abilities in macro/global economics: to understand the historical debate between government's role and free enterprise in the economy; to understand the components of the aggregate demand for goods and services; to be able to predict the effects of monetary policy on interest rates, prices, and national income; to understand the benefits of long term supply side changes and the policies that affect supply-side economics, to understand the impact of international trade and financial investment flows on interest rates, exchange rates and national income; and to be able to predict how various economic policies affect the long term growth potential of both developed and emerging markets.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered:


MGF 632SEM Corporate Governance & Finance

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018
Pre-requisite: MGF 611 or MGF 631 (or equivalent)


Fall 2018 (08/27/2018 - 12/07/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
20501 F1F SEM UNSP Online Nguyen, Thanh Chi

MGF 634LEC Quantitative Methods in Finance

The objective of this course is to ensure students have a solid foundation in the mathematical foundations required to understand and work with complex financial securities and derivatives. This foundation will be useful in higher level finance courses and as practitioners working in financial markets. Topics covered include stochastic calculus, continuous time finance, numerical methods, finite differences, and taylor series approximations. Applications from finance such as bond pricing, option pricing and portfolio theory are used as examples to illustrate the mathematics.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018


Fall 2018 (08/27/2018 - 12/07/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
12508 F1F LEC TR 3:30 - 4:50 p.m. Clemen 17 Oprisan, Adina

MGF 635LEC Financial Derivatives

Objectives of this technical course include providing students with knowledge of specific trading mechanics, basic economic concepts and technical asset valuation tools to successfully employ a wide variety of derivative securities into a risk management context; as well as to understand risk-return tradeoffs associated with specialized speculative strategies in derivatives markets. A broad survey of rapidly-changing forward, futures, options, swaps (and other related derivative types) is followed by emphasis upon asset pricing models of complex financial instruments using both classical economic theory and advanced mathematical techniques. Basic knowledge of differential calculus is expected. Basics of stochastic calculus will be covered. Students will be prepared to employ material learned into a corporate (or smaller firm) environment for management of business-related risk from fluctuating commodity prices, interest rates changes, foreign exchange fluctuations and construction of stock/bond investment fund 'portfolio insurance'.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018 | Spring 2018
Co-Requisite: MGF 633 or MS Accounting Majors.


Fall 2018 (08/27/2018 - 12/07/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
12509 F1F LEC MW 8 - 9:20 a.m. Jacobs 110 Benet, Bruce Alan

Spring 2018 (01/29/2018 - 05/11/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
19163 S2F LEC MW 8 - 9:20 a.m. Alfier 102 Benet, Bruce Alan

MGF 636LEC Complex Financial Instruments

Students taking this course should expect to learn about financial derivatives. Among others, students will learn about how to price financial derivatives and how to incorporate various real-world frictions into binomial trees and stochastic processes (such as underlying the commonly used Black & Scholes model). In a case-study we will use R programming to replicate the risk-neutral price of a variance swap (underlying the so called Volatility Index or VIX). The course will be of particular interest for students who contemplate pursuing a career in the financial industry, e.g. as a Quantitative Analyst. The required prior courses depend on your trajectory (e.g., MGF 633 "Investment Management" or MGF 634 "Quantitative Methods in Finance"). Please consult your study guide for details. In general, students are expected to possess good knowledge of mathematics and statistics. Students should also feel comfortable with Excel and some basic programming knowledge will be helpful. Mathematical, statistical, and Excel skills required for this course will be reviewed during the course.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Spring 2018


MGF 637LEC Financial Modeling

In this course, students will use financial econometric models to analyze problems of model specification, estimation, analysis and forecasting commonly faced by analysts in financial markets. The course materials cover the measurement and estimation of asset returns, earnings, macroeconomic data, risk and related applications in financial data analysis and visualization. Topics include regression analysis of time series/ARIMA models, multiple regression specifications and models of asset volatility including ARCH and GARCH. Throughout the course, students will use the statistical functions of the R programming language to analyze, model and forecast a variety of financial data.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018 | Spring 2018


MGF 638LEC Fixed Income Securities

This is a course about fixed-income securities and markets. It covers topics that are important for any MBA student that anticipates hedging interest rate exposures or otherwise transacting in the fixed-income market. The course reviews basic bond pricing concepts and important features of interest rate futures and options contracts. It also introduces a few (somewhat complicated) models of the term structure. This is a rigorous course that requires students to be familiar with basic investments and calculus concepts. While MGF633 is not a prerequisite for this course, students that are taking MGF633 simultaneously with the course will be better prepared. Like most finance courses, the course focuses more on lasting financial principles than on current institutional details.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Spring 2018


MGF 639SEM Security Trading

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018
Pre-requisite: MGF 611 or MGF 631 (or equivalent)


Fall 2018 (08/27/2018 - 12/07/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
20499 F1F SEM TR 3:30 - 4:50 p.m. Norton 209 Wolfe, Brian A
20500 F2F SEM TR 11 a.m. - 12:20 p.m. Clemen 221 Wolfe, Brian A

MGF 641LEC Financial Policies and Strategies

This course provides an in-depth treatment of corporate finance concepts for all finance majors, with the purpose of furthering students' understanding of major corporate financial policies and decisions. These decisions include choosing between competing investment opportunities, measuring risk and return, how to value a business, how much debt to issue, how much equity to issue, what level of dividend to payout, and incentive structure for managers, and so on. The course starts with a discussion on corporate financial goals and corporate governance issues. It then proceeds to cover topics that center on corporate investment decisions, corporate valuation, and capital structure issues.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018 | Spring 2018


MGF 644LAB Supervised Research - Fixed Income

Students will learn to conduct empirical research on fixed-income securities. The initial learning process involves a limited number of lectures on fixed-income pricing theory, followed by formal training on how to access data from fixed-income database(s). Using the above resources students will also build an investment portfolio for a given risk level. Students will then develop testable hypotheses that employ mathematical modeling, and develop and apply statistical analyses to data to test the hypotheses. Finally, students will develop and present a professional research report based on the empirical findings.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018


MGF 645LAB Supervised Research - Equities

Students will learn to conduct empirical research on equities. The initial learning process involves a limited number of lectures on asset-pricing pricing theory, followed by formal training on how to access data from equity-related database(s). Students with then develop testable hypotheses that employ mathematical modeling, and develop and apply statistical analyses to data to test the hypotheses. Finally, students will develop and present a professional research report based on the empirical findings.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018 | Spring 2018


MGF 646SEM Institutional Investing

The seminar focuses on investment policy and portfolio management of tax-exempt institutional funds, with an emphasis on endowments. The class will discuss asset allocation, risk, the role of active management, incentive structures, governance, and manager selection and evaluation.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Spring 2018
Pre-requisite: MGF 611 or MGF 631 or equivalent or


Spring 2018 (01/29/2018 - 05/11/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
20697 S1F SEM F 9 - 11:40 a.m. Norton 210 Nguyen, Thanh Chi

MGF 647TUT Supervised Research

Instructional and practical experience in the skills and techniques of research through association with a faculty member actively engaged in research. Credit up to 6 hours, depending on the type and amount of research activities.

Credits: variable
Semesters offered: Fall 2018 | Spring 2018


MGF 656LEC Acquisition Transactions

This course is devoted to an in-depth analysis of one or more transactions for the purchase of a business entity. The focus of the course will be the perspectives and concerns of the buyers. We will also review the perspectives and concerns of each of the other major participants in the transaction and identify how these perspectives and concerns are reflected in the ultimate structure of the transaction and the associated documentation. This course is co-taught by School of Law and School of Management faculty, and is cross-listed with LAW856.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered:


MGF 657LEC Financial Innovation

This course introduces students to financial innovations and new products in the financial system. The course provides a general understanding of the financial evolution process, the causes and consequences of financial innovations, and the cost and value of these innovations. The course covers such topics as theory of financial innovation, the financial engineering process, birth and growth of new financial products, financial innovations and new debt, equity and derivative products, and the role of financial instruments in financial, investment and ristk management. The course emphasizes the motivations of financial innovation and methods to design financial instruments to solve complex financial problems and enhance investment returns.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018


MGF 658LEC M&A Strategy/Financing

Provides a detailed understanding of the merger and acquisition process, both from the sell-side (using auctions or negotiated sale processes) and the buy-side (including the perspective of strategic buyers and private equity firms). Students will learn key aspects of acquisition strategy, deal structure, valuation, due diligence, financial modeling, accounting and regulatory issues, as well as preparation and presentation of oral and written investment memorandums. The course will also introduce the financing and transaction documents necessary to consummate an acquisition and steps to improve post-closing success.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018 | Spring 2018
Pre-requisite: MGF 633 or MGE 604 or MS Accounting


MGF 661LEC Mgmt of Fin Institutions

The financial services industry is very dynamic and continues to undergo dramatic changes. Many forces contribute to the changes including interest rates, overall market and credit factors, consolidation within the industry, and regulations. From this perspective, the course explores the basic management problems in the credit, investment, and financing administration functions of financial institutions, including commercial banks in the United States and abroad.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018
Pre-Requisite: MGF 631 Or MGQ 606


MGF 675LEC Multinational Banking and Finance

This course provides an in-depth study of practical applications and current issues faced by internationally active, large and complex banking organizations within the financial markets. In the first segment we will learn financial concepts such as ratio analysis, cash flow determination, and understand how Banks assess the relative risk of a corporation within the financial markets. We will then apply risk model using live case studies to assess the corporation's default risk. In the second segment we will focus on international trade finance and foreign exchange and how Banks assist corporations in hedging foreign exchange transactions. Working on case studies, students will learn international arbitrage, derivation of the International Fisher Effect, and understand and apply using practical applications currency futures, forwards and options in the international foreign exchange markets.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018


Fall 2018 (08/27/2018 - 12/07/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
19699 F1F LEC F 1 - 3:40 p.m. Alfier 103 Suchak, Sudhir D.

MGF 685LEC International Finance Management

This course is designed to familiarize students with the core concepts related to international financial management, including foreign exchange markets (from institutional details to quantitative models for the forecasting of future exchange rates), currency risk derivatives (spanning both a discussion of contract characteristics and quantitative methods for pricing and valuation of currency forwards, options, and swap contracts), quantitative approaches for risk management and hedging in cross-border settings, quantitative analysis of currency arbitrage operations, analysis of translation, economic, and political risks, cross-border financing, issues with cross-border taxation, analysis of institutional details and recent statistics on foreign debt and equity markets, and other topics.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018
Pre-Requisite: MGF 611 and MGQ 608


MGF 694LEC Financial Modeling Using "R"

This course utilizes "R," instead of Excel, as the computational tool. Students will learn how to download and process public data associated with economics, finance and accounting. Students will also learn how to apply "R" to various finance theories.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018
Pre-requisite: Two graduate courses, preferably Co


Fall 2018 (08/27/2018 - 12/07/2018)

Reg. Num. Section Type Topic Days Time Location Instructor
25037 F1F LEC M 5 - 7:50 p.m. Jacobs 214 Yan, Yuxing

MGF 696LEC Portfolio Theory and Strategy

The course covers sophisticated approaches to investing and it has an introduction and three main parts. The introduction covers measures of performance and risk and methods to calculate them in closed form or from historical data. The first part of the course covers investment strategies across several asset classes, from traditional ones such as value or growth investing to strategies employed by hedge funds, such as arbitrage, option trading and other quant strategies. The second part of the course addresses portfolio construction, from assessing a utility function to the investor to constructing an optimal portfolio maximizing that utility. Investor types covered are individuals saving for retirement, speculators, university endowments or foundations, or pension funds. Finally, the last part of the course addresses the topic of risk measurement and management, with an emphasis of risks faced by decentralized organizations, such as funds of funds, foundations, or pension funds.

Credits: 3.00
Semesters offered: Fall 2018
Co-Requisite: MGF 633


  • LAW 688 Securities Regulation

Only MGF 644 or MGF 645 (not both) may be used toward the finance concentration.

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