Master's in Capital Markets, Regulation and Compliance

This practitioner-oriented Master’s degree provides students with a practical and theoretical foundation for successful careers in risk management, compliance, regulation and allied work streams within the financial services industry.

Find out what it's like to experience finance in action

At a glance

  • Gain European and international insights by learning from and sharing ideas with finance & regulatory practitioners and respected academics
  • Engage with a range of critical and mainstream views
  • Stand out from the crowd when applying from jobs by develop your own unique and informed voice
  • Broaden your international exposure with practice-centred teaching attuned to the workplace through case-studies, simulations and interactive discussions
  • Benefit from specialist seminars and class interactions, giving you the opportunity to develop critical thinking skills and the ability to work with diverse groups
Level Master's
Award MSc
Duration 9 months / 12 months
Attendance Full-time
Location Whiteknights campus (Reading)
Programme Director

In this programme, skills are developed through creating a broader understanding of financial firm risk-taking, accountability, governance. The emphasis is on a deep analysis of mainstream and critical authorship. We will challenge current and past thinking on the role of financial institutions and markets. The programme particularly encourages students to examine regulatory structures and concepts in the context of recent and past financial crises.

Students will build the skills and knowledge needed to gain an understanding of financial reform processes and their consequences for markets around the world. Rigorous classroom teaching coupled with extensive reading provides students with a sound theoretical basis. An understanding of substantive legal issues is also developed.

Contributions by industry and regulatory experts introduces students to the nuances of real world application of theoretical constructs. Practical case studies, current legal positions and interactive student discussions or presentations are used in most lectures. In addition legal, academic, practitioner and regulatory input is gained through specialist guest lectures and visits as per the ability of the year-group.

Key topics

Some key topics taught within this degree include:

  • The causes and consequences of risk-taking – an in-depth understanding of the financial crisis
  • Solvency II, Basel, UCITS, company law and corporate governance requirements
  • The roles, structure and responsibilities of key regulatory and supervisory bodies including the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, IAIS, IOSCO, European Systemic Risk Board, SEC, FINRA, UK FSA and its successors, Bank of England and other central banks, EBA, ESMA, EIOPA, BaFin, global, regional and national regulators.
  • Risk appetite and the role of the Board of Directors, Chief Risk Officer and Senior Management
  • How to build a risk management framework and a compliance plan
  • Rationales for regulation and optimal regulatory structures
  • Prudential and conduct of business controls
  • Stakeholders and the consequences of regulatory and governance failures

Expert contributors

As part of the MSc Capital Markets, Regulation and Compliance course, you will be taught by a number of experts and academics with a wide range of professional experience. This includes:

  • Dr Joerg Krause – Vice-Chair of the Supervisory Forum of the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS)
  • Ms Latha Balakrishnan – Former Director of Compliance at the British Business Bank
  • John Christensen – Co-founder of the Tax Justice Network

Part 1 Modules

Compulsory modules Credits

The module provides the economic framework for understanding the global financial system and financial markets, financial institutions, market players and the importance of liquidity and price efficiency. Participants will gain an understanding of the international stock and bond markets, ‘repo’ markets (for borrowing/ lending on a secured basis). The module also introduces foreign exchange, money markets and futures markets (which are developed in more detail in optional Part 2 modules) and also focuses on specific markets for commodity and energy.

Teaching Staff

20

The objective of the module is to provide an overview of econometrics and in particular the analytical techniques used in finance. Via case studies and computer modelling exercises, students then learn how to apply these techniques to real data. Emphasis is placed on practical applications of the techniques in the global financial markets.

10

This module provides an overview of the key building blocks in modern finance theory and introduces techniques for analysing and valuing different classes of risky assets such as equities and derivatives contracts. It also develops ways of optimally selecting portfolios of such assets and develops models of how these portfolios can be priced in financial markets. The techniques introduced in this module are widely applied in other elements of the programme. The module includes simulated trading sessions in our state of the art dealing rooms, where participants are introduced to real world pricing and trading strategies (INVEST sessions).

Teaching Staff

20

Fixed Income and Equity Investments deals with the valuation of fixed income and equity securities. The module focuses on the basic characteristics of these securities and the strategies used for estimating their fundamental value and assessing their risk. Its primary aim is to discuss how certain characteristics and relationships can affect the value of fixed income and equity securities and how can they be exploited to form optimal investment strategies or for the purpose of conducting financial analysis. The analytical techniques introduced in this module are widely applied in other elements of the programme.

Teaching Staff
Christos Mavis Christos Mavis

20

This module helps students to develop a deep, practical understanding of the nature of financial intermediation, the consequent risk management challenges posed to, and by, financial intermediaries, and how these should be addressed by regulated financial firms.

Teaching Staff

10

Part 2 Modules

Compulsory modules Credits

This module enables students to develop a deep practical understanding of the corporate governance and compliance challenges specific to financial intermediaries and how these should be addressed within regulated firms. Having understood the key risks posed by financial intermediaries in the first term, this module deals with the roles and responsibilities of those involved with managing and mitigating these risks.

Teaching Staff

20

Please choose a minimum of 40 credits from the following modules:

Optional modules Credits

The objective of the module is to introduce students to the concept of corporate governance, to explain how governance varies around the world and to explore the potential and actual relationships between corporate governance and performance.

Teaching Staff

20

This module provides an overview of the purpose and operation of financial regulation, and the consequences of financial sector reform for different markets, including those of the students’ home country. The module aims to deliver a broad insight into the key challenges for financial regulation particularly in the light of changes to the financial architecture in the aftermath of the global financial crisis of 2007.

Teaching Staff

20

Financial theories have traditionally assumed that rational, risk-averse investors trade in efficient and free-flowing asset markets. Academic research and practitioner experience have cast doubt on this paradigm, instead proposing that investors may not be utility maximisers, and that there may be impediments to the functioning of markets. This module will describe recent developments in the application of principles drawn from psychology to financial issues.

Teaching Staff

20

Students on 9-month (12-month) programme please choose up to 40 (20) credits from the following modules:

Optional modules Credits

The objective is to introduce the students to programming and its usage for data processing and finance. It deals with how to write programming code, process files, receive input and provide output. Students who complete this course will be able to write programming code in Python, process files, input, output and manage data. Furthermore, students will be able to read and write to Excel and CSV files, connect to databases, obtain and process data from the Web, as well as use Python for Finance and Econometrics applications.

10

The module aims to build on the techniques for portfolio selection that have been introduced in the Securities, Futures and Options module. The module examines the issues involved in understanding the investment market, constructing a competitive investment portfolio (of an active, passive or smart beta style), evaluating the performance of that portfolio, and adjusting its composition through time. It will also consider issues revolving around the management of risk. The compulsory, practical project of the course will provide students with hands-on experience in constructing and managing a realistic investment portfolio.

20

The module objective is to give students a practical working knowledge of the pricing, hedging and trading of derivative securities, in particular options, via the use of trading simulations and pricing case studies/software. The emphasis of the module is on practical application and it is expected that by the end of the module students will understand and be able to analyse the time/risk dynamics of derivatives in a trading environment. Trading sessions are delivered in our state-of-the-art dealing rooms and utilising our bespoke trading simulation software ICTrader, offering exposure into real trading environment and the price formation process. Students will learn how to “think on their feet”, an essential skill in the investment banking industry.

Teaching Staff

20

The aim of the research project is to allow students to define and execute a piece of research in finance on a topic of their choice, with direction from an academic supervisor and with assistance from a doctoral student support supervisor.

Teaching Staff

20

The main aim of the module is to provide a rigorous grounding of the theory and practice of corporate finance and more specifically the long-term financial management decisions of the firm pertaining to investments, financing and payout and how they affect its value. It deals with how corporations are governed, their financing structures, payout policies, the processes involved in the issuance of public and private equity, as well growing through inorganic investment (mergers and acquisitions). The module also extensively deals with advanced financial analysis and enterprise valuation methods employed by financial advisors/investment banks as part of advising corporations. Students on this module take part in a bespoke investment banking pitch-book simulation challenge whereby they have to work with their team and produce a real life pitch-book including financial analysis on a real transaction as part of assessing the company’s strategic alternatives.

Teaching Staff

20

This module aims to provide students with a detailed knowledge of the commodity derivatives markets. It examines the aspects of pricing and trading physical derivatives, with emphasis on the energy and shipping (freight) sectors. The course is designed using real-life trading examples, stimulating students, who wish to follow a sales and trading career, to approach derivatives pricing from first principles.

Teaching Staff

10

Advanced Financial Analysis builds upon the material covered in Part I of Fixed Income and Equity Investments. The module focuses on the main pillars of fundamental top-down equity analysis: the primary aim is to provide an in-depth analysis of how the choices presented by financial standards can impact reported company performance and thus investment decisions. The analytical techniques introduced in this module are widely used in equity analysis by financial analysts and fund managers/traders.

Teaching Staff
Paul Von der Heyde Paul Von der Heyde

10

The evolution of algorithmic trading, the proliferation of alternative trading platforms for trading the same security and the development of new products and assets with limited liquidity have contributed to raising the awareness of academics and traders on the importance of understanding and properly managing liquidity and execution risks. The objective of this course is to give students an introduction to the concepts of market and asset liquidity, trade execution risk and an overview of the methods for managing these types of liquidity risk. This module will not discuss about funding liquidity and managing liquidity in a bank. The issues discussed in this course are important when developing trading strategies, valuing portfolios, liquidating large positions and transitioning assets to new investments.

Teaching Staff

20

Fixed Income Cash and Derivative Markets applies more advanced valuation and risk assessment methods that build on the knowledge introduced in the fixed income component of the first term Fixed Income and Equity Investments module: It describes the basic characteristics of fixed income derivatives, structured products and credit sensitive securities and develops practical strategies for valuation and risk assessment. It also considers how the markets for these securities are related and begins the task of showing how these relationships can be exploited for trading or investment. The module is designed not only for students wanting a more advanced knowledge of the fixed income markets, but also for students wishing to take the exam for the ICMA Fixed Income Certificate (ICMA FIC)

Teaching Staff
Gail Rolland Gail Rolland

20

Bond and Money Markets explores the economic drivers and relationships between bond, money markets and central bank monetary policies. The module offers students the opportunity to gain an understanding of how these connections affect funding liquidity management, trading strategies and the challenges faced by practitioners as well as regulators/policy makers. The course also covers the overall functions, structure and operation of the money market.

The main aims of the module are to provide the tools for understanding the functioning of money markets, their connection with bond markets and central bank interventions, the fundamental determinants of interest rate markets and the commonly used trading strategies.

Teaching Staff

20

Part 3 Modules (12-month only)

Students on the 12-months programme should take 20 credits from the following:

Optional modules Credits

This module aims to provide students with an understanding of financial decision making in the context of the energy industry. The course will combine theoretical models with practical applications. It focuses on energy markets (products, companies, production and consumption), capital budgeting in energy companies, financing of energy companies, energy derivatives and trading in energy markets. A number of case studies in energy finances are utilised.

Teaching Staff

20

This module is designed for advanced Master’s students and doctoral students. It has a very high technical content. It aims to equip the students with the foundations of theoretical asset pricing and with the relevant skills for performing empirical tests. Additionally, a few important corporate finance topics will be covered in the format of student presentations. The objective of the module is to prepare students to become independent and quality researchers.

Teaching Staff

20

The module is less quantitative option open to all MSc students that builds on the coverage of futures contracts from term 1. By the end of the module it is expected that students will be aware of the different ways of constructing stock market indices and the implications of these differences, how futures contracts are traded and the identity of some of the close substitutes for trading index futures, how futures can be priced using an arbitrage relationship, how futures can be used for hedging the price risk of the underlying, and the various uses that fund managers make of these instruments.

Teaching Staff

20

Bond and Money Markets explores the economic drivers and relationships between bond, money markets and central bank monetary policies. The module offers students the opportunity to gain an understanding of how these connections affect trading strategies, funding liquidity management and the challenges faced by practitioners as well as regulators/policy makers. The course also covers the overall functions, structure and operation of the money market..

Teaching Staff

20

This module gives students the opportunity to pursue a work placement with an external organisation broadly related to the general sphere of their degree studies. The aim of the module is to allow participants to gain work experience in a career path of interest, develop a wide range of employability skills, build their network and enhance market awareness. The maximum duration of the placement is 3 months and it takes place during the summer vacation period (June-August). The placement is available only to students on the 12-month version of MSc International Securities, Investment and Banking and MSc International Shipping and Finance. Placements should be secured by students independently. The Centre’s career development office can support students in their search and application process. Placements secured by students are subject to the approval of the module convenor. The module is assessed by a 3,000-word project based on the work experience gained.

Teaching Staff

20

The financial services sector has an ever-expanding need for graduates trained in the fundamentals of compliance, governance and regulation. This increasing demand has been fuelled by implementation of a number and rules and laws, including the EU Market Abuse Directive, Markets in Financial Instruments (MiFID), global standards such as Basel II, and the FSA and US regulators’ focus on principles-based regulation, all of which require significant in-house compliance resources.

With recent explosive growth in capital markets such as China,India, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, combined with the increasing complexity of financial products and a growing sophistication on the part of investors and market participants, there are immense challenges facing institutions, compliance professionals within them and regulators.

Our graduates are in a very strong position to build successful careers in the compliance or legal divisions of investment banks, fund managers and hedge funds, retail banking institutions and other market participants.

Find out more about graduate destinations and career opportunities on our Henley Careers page

Professional accreditation

Chartered Institute of Securities & Investment (CISI)

The ICMA Centre is an accredited Centre of Excellence of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment (CISI), and only one of eight Universities in the UK to hold this status. Centres of Excellence are a select group of UK universities, recognised by the CISI as offering leadership in academic education on financial markets. Students who are on a financially-related masters course recognised by the CISI are eligible for exemptions and membership.

ICMA Centre students on MSc Capital Markets, Regulation and Compliance, MSc Corporate Finance, MSc Finance (formerly known as the MSc in International Securities, Investment and Banking), MSc Financial Risk Management and MSc Investment Management who register and successfully complete two CISI Diploma in Capital Markets modules (Securities and Bonds & Fixed Interest Markets) are eligible for an exemption from the third module (Financial Markets).

Chartered Institute of Securities & Investment (CISI)

ICMA Fixed Income Certificate

To obtain the requisite knowledge to pass the rigorous FIC exam, students are required to take the ICMA Centre Fixed Income Cash and Derivatives Markets module at Part 2. In order to receive the FIC certificate, students will need to register and pass the FIC exam through ICMA.

ICMA Fixed Income Certificate

Our master's in finance courses are available only on a full-time basis with the option of studying for 9 or 12 months.

Learning options

Full-time: 9 months
Full-time: 12 months
Students will be resident and undertake full-time study in the UK. Under both, the 9 and 12-month programmes students take compulsory and/or elective modules in Part 2.
The 12 month option involves taking an elective 20 credit module between July and August, which would also mean a 20 credit reduction in the number of taught modules taken in the spring term.

Course structure

October – December:Part 1 Autumn Term
January:Part 1 Exams
January-April:Part 2 Spring Term
May – June:Part 2 Exams
June – August (12 month programme only):Part 3
August/Sep (12 month programme only):Part 3 Coursework deadlines

Speak to a current student

Contact us

For any questions of academic nature about this programme you are welcome to contact directly the Programme Director, Ms Deepa Govindarajan Driver at d.govindarajan@icmacentre.ac.uk

Admissions

If you have any questions about admissions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Email: admissions@icmacentre.ac.uk
Telephone: +44 (0)118 378 6497

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