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MPhil in Finance and Economics - Optional Modules

Optional Modules


  • F500 : Empirical Finance

    This course is an introduction to some major topics in empirical finance. It aims to endow the student with an understanding of the current issues, methods, and conclusions of empirical research on financial markets. The focus is primarily on equity markets. There will be an emphasis on empirical results and their interpretation. Econometrics required background.

  • F510 : International Finance

    The aim of the course is to introduce students to classical and emerging issues in international finance, covering both modelling and empirical issues. Topics include international financial integration, risk and international portfolio allocation, carry trade, currency crises and contagion, micro-structure of foreign exchange market.

  • F520 : Behavioural Finance

    This course provides an overview of the behavioural finance literature. Behavioural finance tries to understand observed deviations from the predictions of the efficient market hypothesis with the goal of providing better insights into the functioning of financial markets. Typically this involves relaxing the assumption of fully informed and rational agents. Thus, aside from reviewing the behavioural finance literature the course also aims at providing a deeper understanding of why, and when, humans behave as boundedly rational agents on financial markets. To this end we will also study the relevant literature in psychology, behavioural economics, evolutionary anthropology as well as more traditional economics and finance.

  • F530 : Venture Capital in the Innovation Economy

    The course explores the political and economic context from which professional venture capital has evolved and evaluates the distribution and correlates of investment returns to venture capital.

  • F540 : Topics in Applied Asset Management

    This course will provide a detailed understanding of applied portfolio design and related topics in practical asset management and risk management. We first consider how to overcome the problems with the use of mean variance methods, which are industry standard. A range of alternative modern approaches will then be discussed. We will examine the role of the predictability in both expected returns and volatility for position sizing, the use of leverage, managing risk through vol targeting, directional prediction, volatility timing, the use of quantile regression methods and finally the importance of recognising regimes and the use of strategies that can hold both long and short positions. The practical focus will be on equity markets but we will also consider FX and futures markets while studying carry and momentum strategies. The impact of two behavioural issues, herding, sentiment may also be considered if time permits.

  • E101 : Applied Microeconomics

    This Module will cover a range of topics in applied microeconomics, including research in public finance and labour. The focus is on individual behaviour. There will also be a strong focus on the use of theory and data to answer interesting and policy relevant questions.

  • E200 : Principles of Macroeconomics I

    This Module aims to provide an advanced overview of macroeconomics. It covers key theoretical and empirical contributions that help to analyse and explain macroeconomic phenomena. Upon completion students will have a solid understanding of the main phenomenon in macroeconomics; the ability to analyse macroeconomic issues using theoretical models; and a sound understanding of the empirical relevance of macroeconomic models.

  • E201 : Applied Macroeconomics

    This course provides an intuitive, yet rigorous, analysis of the effects of fiscal and monetary policy on the macroeconomy. Both theoretical as well as empirical components are studied. In addition, the effect of policy is analysed both in "normal times" as well as in situations in which the nominal interest rate is at the zero lower bound (ZLB).

  • S140 : Behavioural Economics

    This course offers an introduction to the behavioural approach to economics. Among the topic covered are cognitive biases, decision-making heuristics, behavioural game theory, intertemporal decision making, addiction, and applications to labour economics and development. It is also hoped that it will include a brief survey of recent research in neuroeconomics, with an emphasis on its relationship to economic theories. The course includes both theoretical and empirical material, but a recurring theme is the importance of experimental findings both in the laboratory and in the field.

  • S150 : Economics of Networks

    Our choices and behaviour are shaped by whom we interact with. The choices of our friends are in turn shaped by their friends, whose choices are in turn influenced by their friends, and so on. Thus an individual’s choices are shaped by the overall network of relationships which obtain. Moreover, rational individuals who realize these effects have an incentive to make investments and create networks that are advantageous to themselves. In the last decade, these ideas have led to a burst of theoretical and empirical research on the economics of networks. The aim of this course is to provide a rigorous introduction to this body of research.

  • S301 : Applied Econometrics

    This course will focus on (i) cutting-edge strategies for obtaining causal estimates without an experiment, with examples from labour, public finance, health, and education and (ii) panel data which includes modelling heterogeneity in panel data using fixed and random effect models, dynamic panels and discrete dependent variable panel models. The course will explore the pros and cons of using panel data, social experiments, regression discontinuity, register data, and instrumental variables to arrive at causal estimates. An emphasis will be placed on current best practices, with empirical examples ranging from the evaluation of social safety net programs, to the effect of educational policy reforms.