Finance and economics are closely related disciplines that often inform each other, though the details are very different. Economics is a field of study that considers how people and institutions structure their economic activities and assesses the impacts of those activities on society as whole. Finance, on the other hand, is based on the principles of accounting which examine the relationship between financial instruments and their attributes, their prices, timing, risks, valuations, etc. The two fields are often blended to study the implications of economic policies.
Recently, finance and economics have started to interlink in surprising ways. Finance applications are currently playing an increasing role in sport and athletic team planning, in high school athletic programs and in the management of major sporting events, such as the 2021 Beijing Olympics. A large amount of investment money is now being put into the research, development and application of new technology for sports and athletic competition. As the technology develops and becomes more commonplace in sporting arenas, it is likely that the study of economics will become intertwined with the study of technology.
Studying economics and finance during the course of one’s degree program in undergraduate Business Studies programs helps students develop the analytical skills necessary to be successful in the professional world. Students develop a thorough knowledge of macroeconomics and the role of finance in it, but they also learn the important elements of business law and organizational behavior. Many programs also integrate financial analysis with programming and computer-aided design (CAD). After completing an advanced degree program in Business Studies, graduates have many options available to them. Many colleges and universities now offer interdisciplinary major in finance, accounting, economics, business, statistics, or any other area of business that interests the student.
Courses in Finance and Accounting Interdisciplinary Major. Finance and Accounting Interdisciplinary majors are designed to provide students with a broad overview of the broad area of finance and accounting. The curriculum typically includes Introduction to Financial Analysis, Principles and Practice, Fundamentals of Accounting and Auditing, Principles of Management, Statistics for Managers, Theory of Capital Markets, The Nature of Money, Business Analysis for the Manager, and Financial Yearbooks.
The four major areas of Finance are also discussed in the introductory Economics courses, which include International Financial Analysis, Private Economic Systems, and Public Economic Systems. International Financial Analysis focuses on the process of global trade and domestic monetary policies; Private Economic Systems applies the concepts of economic growth, inflation, and budget deficits to businesses and individuals; Public Economic Systems considers central bank policy, interest rates, credit, banking, fiscal policy, and economic growth as factors affecting the nation; and Theory of Capital Markets examines the relationship between the price level of capital and the efficiency of production. These core courses provide an introduction to the topic and the theoretical and practical concepts used in the Finance and Accounting class. Students complete an assigned number of credit hours, depending on the chosen major, and receive a grade based on the total credit hours achieved, as well as their GPA.
In terms of elective choices, students may choose to enroll in a course specific to personal finance, such as Personal Finance or Accounting for Business Owners. Within the course of study, students will become acquainted with budgeting techniques, saving and spending advice, and personal finance research and statistics. There is also the opportunity to choose elective topics in personal finance, such as Risk, Cost, and Valuation, Taxes and Funding, and Investing for Personal Careers. With electives, students will be able to choose to focus on a specific area of personal finance. These electives usually cover financial education and counseling, retirement, investment, and real estate, as well as the business world.
Students must graduate from an accredited college in order to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSB). The degree typically requires three years of graduate-level coursework at an accredited university. Students pursuing a career in public finance should pursue their Bachelor of Science in Economics with a concentration in macroeconomics. At the bachelor’s level, students must specialize in either microeconomics or macroeconomics and public finance.
In terms of curriculum, students attending college courses in business and accounting programs will typically choose either the sophomore year’s course in business management or the freshman year’s course in economics. In the United States, the Department of Labor places an emphasis on economics and work ethics; therefore, graduates of these programs are highly prized employees. The National Association of Business Schools and Colleges places an emphasis on accounting and business management, and students taking degrees in this area are expected to have a strong background in mathematics and other disciplines. The graduate schools that offer courses in public finance offer courses in taxation and economic policy, which will prepare students to work in federal agencies and localities as well as state and national offices.
Finance continues to be a popular degree with students throughout the United States. Finance professionals in every field are very well-employed, and graduates with degrees in finance can find high-paying jobs in financial institutions, private industries, and government agencies. A finance major who wishes to pursue graduate studies can select from a variety of advanced topics that enable him or her to further their education, while earning a competitive salary and advancing in his or her chosen profession. Anyone with an interest in finance should consider pursuing an advanced degree, whether it be in business economics, or math so that he or she can be well-employed in today’s economy and have the opportunity to advance in his or her chosen profession.