Why a MSc in Finance (Hedge Funds and Private Equity)?
Mastering the full spectrum of traditional, alternative and innovative investment strategies in
Hedge Funds and Private Equity
- This degree gives students a solid foundation in financial analysis with a strong emphasis on real life applications in order for students to sharpen their business sense
- The Master’s degree in hedge funds & private equity thanks to small class sizes is able to ensure a high quality learning process
- The program integrate IUM’s network of asset managers and alternative fund managers in the courses conception in order to insure that the curriculum includes the latest developments and expectations of the alternative finance industry
- Students can tailor their learning in order to suit to their ultimate career objectives
Dr. Dino Sola, Prof. of Finance
"If you enjoy the challenge of predicting financial markets, devising investment strategies, looking for inefficiencies, discovering undervalued securities, testing models and theories, then the Specialization in Hedge Funds and Private Equity at IUM is for you. In this program you will have plenty of opportunities to do all of that, and to learn how to think like a hedge fund manager. You will also be asked to create your own (virtual) hedge fund, complete with its legal structure, service providers, due diligence documents, marketing material, and to present your fund to potential investors."
The Specialization in Hedge Funds & Private Equity at a glance
Practical orientation with a focus on fundamental analysis and value creation
Lectures with leading fund managers
Strong emphasis on real life applications in order for students to sharpen their business sense
Intense, collaborative environment that fosters very operational individuals
Program Description of the Master of Science in Finance (Hedge Funds & Private Equity)
This MSc in Finance has been created in order to fulfill the
specific needs of the alternative finance industry.
Industry players, faced with complex, ever changing market dynamics, need to develop adaptable approaches to the many challenges they face. They require well educated associates with a solid analysis capacity, the ability to find value
This program aims at fostering highly competent finance professionals
with a strong business sense, the capacity to formulate
and implement innovative strategies, and to work efficiently in intense, detailed oriented finance teams.
Some of the courses offered in the Hedge Funds and Private Equity Specialization
Financial Accounting for Investments
This course explores the subtleties and complications that arise
in applying financial accounting standards to investments in
equity and debt securities. Students will analyze the financial
information – in particular, financial statements – in quarterly
and annual reports of publicly traded corporations to gain insight
in the valuation of securities issued by them. Besides focusing
on the key issues of profitability, growth, cash flow generation,
liquidity and credit worthiness, students will learn to
critically evaluate financial disclosures to identify value drivers,
as well as unrealistic or overoptimistic statements.
Macroeconomics for Financial Forecasting
This graduate‐level course in international macroeconomics
aims to help students understand the forces shaping the current
global economy, and to develop forecasting and investing skills.
Macroeconomic concepts and tools are applied to practical
"global macro" investing decisions. Thus, the course explores
macroeconomic themes and macro drivers such as business
cycles, national output and growth, productivity, globalization,
inflation, money supply, national income accounts, consumer
spending, interest rates, monetary policy, and foreign
This course introduces the theory and practice of the financial
management of companies.
Topics include cost of capital and optimal capital structure, capital
budgeting, working capital management, long term debt
financing, common and preferred stock financing, dividend
policy, share buybacks, and corporate governance.
Students will develop an understanding of companies’ behavior
and needs by learning how firms raise and allocate capital,
and by studying ethical issues linked to this decision process.
Stock and Bond Valuation
This course focuses on stocks and bonds. It discusses the mathematics
of these basic financial products; and the implementation
of practical tools to compute returns and yields, assess
risk, and determine fundamental values.
Topics include equity valuation models (dividend discount and
free cash flow models, and P/E ratio valuation), risk and risk
measurement, macroeconomic and industry analysis, bond
prices and yields, the term structure of interest rates, interest
rate risk and bond duration and convexity, and bond portfolio
Students acquire a working knowledge of stock and bonds including
the characteristics of the instruments and their markets,
the factors affecting the way in which they trade, and
their uses by different players in global financial markets.
Asset Management and Investment Banking
This course provides a broad overview of asset management
practices. It presents various strategies, financial instruments,
and investment vehicles through the analysis of real investment
Beginning with a presentation of the different key players of
investment banking and asset management, the course describes
the different asset classes (stocks, bonds, HF, commodities,
volatility, etc.) and focuses on the underlying principles
and strategies (passive, active, total return, and absolute return)
used in the financial industry.
Portfolio Theory and Management
This course analyzes different portfolio management techniques
with respect to empirical evidence of security returns.
Major topics include discussion of the Capital Asset Pricing
Model (CAPM), the Arbitrage Pricing Theory (APT), and multifactor
models. Students construct and monitor their own
investment portfolios using data from Bloomberg.
They learn how to combine different asset classes into investment
portfolios according to modern portfolio theory with
the objective of achieving an optimal risk‐return profile.
Statistics and Financial Data Analysis
This course introduces financial data analysis and the basics
of statistical inference. The course also introduces the use of
ordinary least squares (OLS) simple and multiple regression
to model relationships amongst financial and economic variables.
Students study statistical properties of financial data,
analyze them using Excel data analysis tools, and learn to interpret
and clearly present results.
Derivative Products and Strategies
This course focuses on "plain vanilla" financial derivatives
such as options, futures, and swaps; the markets in which
they trade; and the strategies that can be constructed using
these derivative instruments. The course provides a detailed
study of equity and currency options, forwards and futures
on stock indices, currencies and commodities, and currency,
interest rate, and equity swaps.
Students will learn the characteristics and specifications of
these derivative products, the trading strategies that can be
implemented using them (such as stock‐index arbitrage, fixed
income arbitrage, various options strategies like strangles,
and straddles), and how to develop an intuition about the
factors that affect the way in which they trade.
Corporate Governance and Market Regulations
This course surveys worldwide corporate governance from
the investor’s point of view. It focuses on the importance of
corporate governance for the investor.
The course begins with a discussion of the basic corporate
governance problem and the major issues related to it, prominent
proposed solutions to the problem, the different ways it
is addressed in various companies, and the positives or drawbacks
of various solutions. The course continues with a broad
overview of current issues in market regulation focusing on
the role and evolving responsibilities of order entry firms,
market makers, and other participants in the market.
The course highlights preventive compliance tools and methods
through case studies and interactive discussion; and
explores areas related to compliance, surveillance, examinations,
trading, enforcement, and other areas of interest
in market regulation. Topics include raising capital from the
public and issues arising in the subsequent trading of publicly
listed securities, insider trading and market manipulation,
and key concepts in the Takeovers Act.
Students will learn how corporate governance has an important
influence on a society’s economic productivity.
This course focuses on the measurement and management
of different types of financial risk such as market risk, liquidity
risk, and operational risk; and develops a framework for integrated
risk management. The course emphasizes the Value at
Risk (VaR) technique and its applications.Students will learn
and implement quantitative techniques for risk management
using Excel spreadsheets.
Ethics in Finance
The course is designed to provide a solid theoretical and
practical basis for ethical behavior in the global financial services
industry. The course commences with conceptual definitions,
typology, and the theoretical framework of ethics in
finance. It then helps categorize ethical challenges endemic
to the state‐of‐the‐art financial marketplace, common decision
making constraints, and financial management practices
whose ethical perception is often deemed controversial (e.g.
bankruptcies, hostile takeovers, offshore tax planning, government
bailouts). The course further describes corporate theory
evolution and its bearing on ethical behavior (with particular
emphasis on phenomena that have come to light during the
global financial crisis of 2007‐2009).
Finally, course content goes on to outline ethics modules of
three globally recognized financial designations (CFA, ACCA,
and PRMIA) and is accompanied by a series of explanatory
case studies on spectacular corporate failures over recent
decades. The course culminates by presenting the instructor’s
hands‐on experience of ethical predicaments faced by a
present‐day financial sector executive.
This course requires students to develop an applied project
to facilitate the application of theory, skills, and knowledge
acquired over the course of the MFIN program. The capstone
applied project may take the form of a thesis or a projectbased
The thesis is completed in collaboration with a faculty expert
and investigates industry, market, and a topical issues or opportunities
related to a specific area of interest. Any problems
investigated must have current and ongoing relevance.
The project‐based learning exercise requires students to work
with their faculty mentor on a sustained basis that will involve
both direct contact hours and research/lab hours. The final
deliverable is the project white paper.
Students will learn how to work under pressure and apply
what they have learned in the Master in Finance program.
Hedge Fund and Fund of Funds Management
This course is designed to expose students to various characteristics
of hedge funds – their classification in terms of the
strategies employed and risk‐adjusted performance evaluation,
and their organizational structure as well as their objectives,
risks, and disclosure practices. The course introduces
legal issues concerning the formation of a hedge fund and
their business practices such as management and incentive
fees structure. The "hedge fund universe", its historical and
current evolution, and its ethical issues is presented from a
variety of perspectives, from managers to private and institutional
investors. Several classes in this course are taught by
Real Estate Investing
This course seeks to impart an understanding of commercial
real estate as an income producing investment. It explains
real estate syndications as an ownership form, financing alternatives,
and the use of financial leverage. Students will
learn the techniques used to valuate commercial properties,
how to prepare an investment analysis, and how to identify
the risks of development projects. They will develop an indepth
understanding of the mortgage market with its several
sources of financing.
Venture Capital and Entrepreneurial Finance
This course is designed to familiarize students with the issues
and practices surrounding private equity investments, in particular
venture capital, bootstrap finance, mezzanine investing,
This involves learning about the dimensions of risks and expected
returns in a context which is characterized by incomplete
information and lack of liquidity while gaining practical insights
into the interaction and relationship between the investor and
management: What are their respective interests and strategies?
How do they come to a deal? What is the process? How
do they create value?
The course integrates various managerial disciplines and covers
the venture capital environment, financial modeling, business
plan analysis, investment criteria, delivering pitches and
teasers, understanding and negotiating terms and conditions,
and preparing for due diligence and closing.
Hedge Fund Strategies
This course explores trading techniques traditionally used
by hedge funds. These include global macro strategies and
event‐driven investing as well as quantitative techniques such
as long-short pairs trading and statistical arbitrage, convertible
arbitrage, risk arbitrage, fixed‐income arbitrage, capital
structure arbitrage, and volatility, correlation and dispersion
trading. Some lectures are given by professionals from
the hedge fund industry. Students will learn the quantitative
models underlying strategies and implement practical tools
that can be used in actual trading.
Mergers and Acquisitions
The course examines the different phases of an acquisition
process such as screening of targets, valuation, bid tactics (and
defense tactics), financing, negotiation, communications, and
integration. The course emphasizes the valuation process and
the quantitative tools used by practitioners (such as cash flow
models) to value a company.
Private Equity Investing
This course focuses on private equity financing of businesses
that are not in an early or start‐up phase, assigning particular
emphasis to the leveraged buyout process. The course examines
the different stages of the private equity cycle from fundraising
to how funds are deployed by a private equity firm; from deal
structure, due diligence, and negotiation to valuation approaches
and exit strategies. Finally, the course also analyzes private
equity returns and risks, and considers the future outlook for
private equity markets. Students study private equity as an alternative
investment class both from the point of view of a private
equity analyst or private equity fund manager, and from the perspective
of an investor willing to allocate a portion of a portfolio
to this asset class.
Please note that this list is not exhaustive and subject to change
At the end of the academic year, the applied research project or the internship offer students the opportunity to apply the theory gained in the courses and to further develop their interests and competencies in a chosen field of specialization.
In their internship search, students from the Master in Finance, Hedge Funds & Private Equity are supported by all IUM faculty members and by the IUM Career Office, that provide
them with information and guidance on the finance job market places and help them throughout the year to carefully prepare their applications in these competitive markets.
Anchored in the IUM teaching philosophy, most of the Hedge Funds and Private Equity courses combine the rigorous theoretical approach of IUM professors with the concrete views of Finance professionals
Courses like Real Estate Investing, Merger and Acquisitions or Venture Capital are mainly taught by finance top executives with a proven track records in their fields.
Throughout the year, renowned finance experts from leading institutions as UBS, Man Investments, JP Morgan
come at IUM to share their view on financial markets trends, forecasts or on the new investment opportunities.
Hedge funds managers regularly come to IUM and present their specific strategies and models to students. They are also invited to evaluate the efficiency of strategies and models developed by students within some specific courses.
Ashkan Senobari, Master in Finance (Hedge Funds and Private Equity Class of 2011)
Analyst at J.P. Morgan
"What I found unique about the MFIN Hedge Funds & Private Equity program at IUM was the excellent combination of quantitative and qualitative studies. Moreover, the small size of the class enabled us to interact with each other and professors on a completely different level. Each lecture brought new perspectives leading to a tremendously steep learning curve. Most importantly, what I believe sets this very demanding program apart from its peers is the practical focus; literally every module involved practical work such as advanced valuation modeling on Excel. The Master's in Finance program at IUM is in my view the best possible preparation for a challenging and tough career in the financial services industry."
Career opportunities for the MSc in Finance (Hedge Funds & Private Equity)
A passport to enter in the highly competitive market of the alternatives investment industry.
Over the last years, the world of alternative investments has been facing novel challenges which has led the participants
to reconsider their models, spurring constant innovation and an increasing level of sophisticated analysis and action, while
strengthening risk management.
Equipped with a thorough knowledge of investment strategies but also with an open and critical mindset, IUM MSc in Finance alumni found challenging positions in a large variety of financial institutions worldwide, in traditional asset management companies as in alternative investment companies, in in well established areas as in emerging markets.
The broad range of skills they acquired during this intensive and practical program enabled them to apply for positions as: Junior portfolio manager, financial analyst, junior investment manager, performance analyst, asset allocation analyst, hedge fund / funds selection analyst, research analyst in specific funds or in private equity companies
Some of the companies where they have interned or are still working are:
HSBC Monaco, PriceWaterhousecoopers, Bloomberg London, Archon Group (Goldman Sachs Group), UBS investment banking, KnightVinke Monaco/New York, Monaco Asset Management, SEAF Macedonia, Cathagena Capital Germany, Odewald & Cie Germany, JP Morgan Chase New York, EFG Eurofinanciere d’investissements Monaco/Geneva, Amherst Funds US...
Jacek Maslak, Master in Finance (Hedge Funds & Private Equity Class of 2008)
Financial Analyst at Knight Vinke
"In addition to the tremendous theoretical knowledge base gained, our professors always made sure that we learned how to independently apply this knowledge during complex projects performed under time constraints. Such exercises were a tremendously important preparation for what I was faced with during my first job experience in the financial sector.
What I found unique about the Master in Finance program at IUM is the result of finding yourself in a new and exciting place with a small group of like-minded but very unique and diverse individuals who are trying to get through the year together. Combined with
a very demanding program this situation created an immense bond of friendship within the group, which I found to be one of the most valuable and motivating aspects of my studies at IUM.
Currently I’m working as a financial analyst at Knight Vinke, an activist asset manager investing in underperforming public large cap companies."