Bite-sized Look: Corporate Finance

The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the number of employment opportunities for financial managers will grow 7% by 2024. Because of that growth, as well as an increased emphasis on the importance of understanding financial concepts, more attention is being paid to preparing students for this industry.

Corporate Finance by Katy Tripses


What exactly is corporate finance?

Corporate finance focuses on strategic decisions surrounding the management of funds for a company. Responsibilities for those working in finance include financial planning and budgeting, investment decisions, investment funding, and risk management. The ultimate goal of these roles is to maximize company value while keeping risk to a minimum.

Why is it important?

Finance is an integral part of every decision that a company makes. Effective financial management is crucial to the survival of every company. And no matter what type of role you work in, finance will have a significant impact on your work.

What skills are necessary to work in finance?

You need more than just a knack for math and analytics to be successful in finance. Hiring professionals have begun putting a lot of emphasis on:

  • Strong communication skills, both written and verbal
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills and ability to manage key relationships
  • Organizational skills and keen attention to detail
  • Creativity in problem solving
  • High ethical standards

What types of finance careers can you pursue?

Finance is more than just accounting. There are a variety of different industry roles including:

  • Commercial Banker: Assists clients in managing financial accounts and making decisions regarding stocks, bonds, and loans.
  • Investment Banker: Advises businesses on activities such as raising capital, mergers and acquisitions, and risk management associated with an investment.
  • Financial Advisor: Helps individuals or businesses develop financial goals and actionable plans for reaching those goals.
  • Financial Analyst: Provides advice on strategic business decisions based on up-to-date financial data and market trends.
  • Tax Manager: Manages tax plans for individuals and businesses to help them navigate and comply with changing tax codes.

Where are the best cities for finance professionals?

Finance professionals are some of the most sought after as their expertise is integral in every industry. So opportunities are available nearly everywhere; however, some cities do offer more finance employment options than others, according to Investopedia:

  • Boston, USA
  • Chicago, USA
  • Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  • Frankfurt, Germany
  • Hong Kong, China
  • London, England
  • New York, USA
  • San Francisco, USA
  • Tokyo, Japan
  • Zurich, Switzerland

How much can I make as a finance professional?

As with many other industries, salaries for finance professionals vary. Some roles, such as tax managers, often have a lower starting salary but include opportunities for rapid growth.

According to Payscale, the average starting salary for a person graduating with a degree in finance is $42,500. After 10 years, the median salary is $81,374.

Need help preparing for class? Check out our Corporate Finance page, where you can find notes, study guides, and other materials created by your classmates to help you get the most out of studying.

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