Today financial management operates in a highly complex, interconnected and fast-moving international arena. Organisational objectives have to integrate a wide variety of considerations, such as variations in global markets, long-term strategies, corporate social responsibility and stakeholder value; at the same time, short-term financial growth is desired and demanded. Are you interested in the challenge of becoming part of a new generation of financial professionals, who have the knowledge, mindset and skills to ‘future proof’ the financial management of large, SME and start-up businesses? Then the Master’s in Financial Management at Utrecht University School of Economics (U.S.E.) gives you a unique, multidisciplinary and international programme in which you will learn to understand not just a firm’s finances, but also how to deal with  economic, managerial, regulatory, and reporting issues to maximise enterprise value.

The MSc in Financial Management provides students not only with the latest economic and financial theory, but also the hard financial skills and multidisciplinary understanding to put theory into practice in an increasingly complex world. This Master’s programme focuses on all important aspects of modern financial management, including how to raise capital (i.e. issuing shares and bonds), how to allocate capital (capital budgeting, operational budgeting), how to manage short-term resources (working capital management), how to deal with dividend policies, and how to align individual motives to organisational objectives (performance management, compensation systems). In addition, you will learn how to effectively introduce changes in financial management policies in organisations. Importantly, the Utrecht University MSc in Financial Management is geared toward a new generation of financial professionals who are trained to understand and solve trade-offs between short- and long-term objectives, between shareholders and stakeholders, and between financial and social responsibility.

This MSc in Financial Management is geared toward a new generation of financial professionals.
Peter-Jan Engelen

Career perspectives

If you want to prepare yourself for a career in financial management, whether in a small, medium or large (international) organisation or in a financial management consulting firm, this degree is for you. Upon completion of this Master’s you will typically take on one of the following entry level functions: financial trainee, assistant to the financial manager, financial management consultant, financial analyst, business consultant, business analyst, business trainee, assistant treasurer, or assistant controller. Although geared toward the financial side of management, this programme also provides a sound basis for more general managerial tasks. In fact, many companies prefer a background in financial management for general management positions, as financial considerations are the root of all major business decisions.

Programme objective

The Master’s in Financial Management is designed to provide you with the knowledge, understanding, and skills necessary for a professional career in international financial management. You will gain specialised knowledge, founded on the principles of finance and economics, that is highly relevant in practice.

The core objectives of this Master’s programme can be summarised by the five A’s of financial management: Attract, Allocate, Administer, Analyse, and Anticipate.

  • Attract: Attracting money involves key decisions on the source of financing. In today’s globalised capital markets firms can tap into international capital markets, issue floating rates notes on the Euromarkets or attract equity capital with an initial public offering (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange. This programme will provide you with insights into the dynamics of international capital markets and how they can be used to raise capital for everything from start-ups to multinational mega-projects.
  • Allocate: In today’s fast-changing business environment, modern financial managers need a state-of-the-art tool-box to make complex capital budgeting decisions. Which projects in a company should get funding? How much and why?  You will analyse how to estimate cash flows, to calculate costs of capital in both domestic and international settings, and to use a real option framework to handle highly uncertain and irreversible investment and allocation decisions.
  • Analyse: Financial managers need to constantly analyse and monitor the firm with respect to profitability, liquidity and solvency. This involves financial statement analysis and cost calculations. As a financial manager you also need to manage and monitor different risk exposures.
  • Administer: In support of analytical activities and systems, a financial manager needs several administering activities such as collecting, registering, consolidating and reporting financial data (quarterly and annual reports). Knowledge of financial accounting and expertise in treasury is important here.
  • Anticipate: An important task of the (chief) financial officer is to anticipate future events and cash flow streams. Cash planning, budgeting, investment planning, and risk assessment are crucial activities in this area.

In addition to expertise in the above areas, at the end of this programme in Utrecht you will be able to:

  • put academic knowledge and skills into practice;
  • conduct independent research which contributes to the field of financial management;
  • solve problems, both independently and in a team;
  • demonstrate mastery of subject-specific English terminology;
  • manage your own personal and professional development.

CFA University Affiliated Program

Utrecht University is an Affiliated University with the CFA Institute. The MSc program in Financial Management is recognized by CFA Institute as incorporating at least 70% of the CFA® Program Body of Knowledge, including the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standard of Practice for financial practitioners.
[Read the whole press release in PDF]

As such, this master program position well students interested in enrolling in the CFA® Program and obtain the CFA® charter, the designation of excellence in the investment community. To qualify for the CFA® charter, you need to pass 3 exams and have a number of years of working experience. U.S.E. can offer scholarships to outstanding master students to undertake CFA® exams at a special price.

For more information about the CFA® charter, please visit the CFA® Institute website.

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Degree: This Master's programme is officially registered under its name in the Central Register of Higher Education Study Programmes
  • Title: MSc
  • Master's degree in: International Economics and Business
  • Programme: Financial Management
Accredited by the NVAO
Croho code:
Language of instruction:
Part- or full-time status:
1 year
Credits: 60 credits equals one year full-time study load (European Credit Transfer System, ECTS)
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When to apply:

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Tuition fees:
Law, Economics and Governance 
Graduate school:
Law, Economics and Governance