Programmes

MSc Finance and Private Equity

  • Graduate taught
  • Department of Finance
  • Application code N3UB
  • Starting 2018

The MSc in Finance and Private Equity is ideal for those seeking a generalist finance master’s with an integrated specialisation in private equity. This unique programme, supported by private equity firm Abraaj Group, offers unparalleled access to leading private equity researchers and practitioners who actively participate in the development of the field. 

The programme is built upon the highly successful MSc Finance (full-time) programme, with the addition of a dedicated course taught by the School's Abraaj Group Chair in Private Equity. You will focus on topics including the structure of private equity (PE) funds and how PE can be used in start-ups, in scaling-up cash flow businesses, and in restructuring firms facing financial distress.

As well as lectures, discussion and case studies, you will benefit from regular practitioner-led teaching. You will have the opportunity to gain deeper practical insight and links to the City, and will enjoy close interaction with LSE's Financial Markets Group and the Systemic Risk Centre, which attract leading finance researchers from across the world to their numerous research seminars and conferences.

Graduates of this highly-respected programme benefit from excellent career prospects in investment banks, consultancies, and a variety of financial institutions.

Programme details

Key facts

Start date Pre-sessional course begins Monday 10 September 2018
Application deadline None – rolling admissions. However please note the funding deadlines
Duration 10 months full-time only, including pre-sessional (see Bologna process)
Applications 2016 824
Intake 2016 60
Availability Open
Tuition fee £34,200 (all students)
Deposit To secure a place on the programme offer holders will be required to pay a deposit of £3,500 within four weeks of receiving their offer.
Minimum entry requirement 2:1 degree or equivalent in any discipline and good quantitative skills, at least to A level Mathematics (or the equivalent)
GRE/GMAT requirement GMAT or GRE is required for all applicants without a UK undergraduate degree (GMAT strongly preferred). GMAT is recommended for applicants with UK undergraduate degrees, especially those whose quantitative skills are not demonstrated by their undergraduate studies, or those who did not achieve or are not expected to achieve a first class degree
English language requirements Standard (see 'assessing your application')
Financial Support Graduate support scheme (deadline 26th April 2018).
Location Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE

For more information about tuition fees and entry requirements, see the fees and funding and assessing your application sections.

Programme structure and courses

Curriculum overview

The Department of Finance enjoys a pre-eminent reputation for the excellence of its teaching and research. Our diverse faculty and student body come from across the globe, providing a rich environment in which to research and study finance, ensuring that we continue to rank alongside the most highly-rated Departments in the world.

We believe that a sound basis in academic theory is crucial for long-term success. However, theory is symbiotic with application. The programme begins with core courses that give a thorough grounding in the principles of finance seen both in general and in real world applications. In the second term, you deepen your specific knowledge of private equity by taking a dedicated course taught by the School's Abraaj Group Chair in Private Equity. Our optional courses then provide deeper practical insight into finance as practice by leading financial institutions.

Pre-sessional programme

All registered students will attend a full-time 3-week pre-sessional programme starting in early September. The essential pre-sessional course consists of preparatory academic classes, the Professional Development Programme, and social events.

Pre-sessional academic classes cover revision and introduction to core quantitative mathematics, statistics and accounting, ensuring all students are able to tackle the material in the first term’s core courses.

The pre-session also involves a number of career skills sessions to best prepare students for the competitive financial services sector job market:

Introduction to careers in Finance

City Speaker Series

CV and cover letter workshops

Consulting case study course

1-to-1 CV checking

Networking skills session

Job application form skills session

Alumni panel and networking reception

For more information on the Professional Development Programme see the drop-down section below.

First term: compulsory courses

The foundation of the programme is built in the first term with study of two core courses: Corporate Finance and Asset Markets. Corporate Finance begins with the firm's investment decision and the cost of capital. This in turn is linked to the firm’s financial structure and market environment where the firm operates. It studies in detail major financial decisions including dividend choice, going public, mergers and acquisitions, and restructuring in financial distress. Asset Markets takes the student from fundamental concepts to up-to-date applications in fixed-income, equity and derivatives markets.

First term compulsory courses (2 units):

Corporate Finance
Provides a comprehensive overview of firms’ financial decision-making.

Asset Markets
Familiarises you with the workings of financial markets, and equips you with the fundamental tools of asset valuation.

Second term: compulsory and optional courses

In the second term, students deepen their specific knowledge of private equity by taking a dedicated course taught by the School's Abraaj Group Chair in Private Equity. Additionally, during the second term you will take three optional half unit courses on topics such as financial systems, risk management, portfolio management methods, advanced derivatives and structured financial products, fixed income, advanced corporate finance and applied financial valuation.

Second term compulsory and optional courses (2 units):

(* denotes a half unit)

Compulsory Course

Private Equity*
Provides a thorough grounding in the theory and recent developments in the field of private equity.

Dedicated Courses

Fixed Income Securities and Credit Markets*
Provides a thorough grounding in recent developments in fixed income securities pricing, hedging and portfolio management.

Topics in Portfolio Management*
Provides analytical and statistical tools for the management of investment portfolios.

Mergers, Buyouts and Corporate Restructurings*
Covers advanced topics in Corporate Finance and Valuation and introduces students to valuation techniques for both securities and projects.

Financial Engineering*
Covers the basics in derivatives theory, and to apply them to a multitude of financial securities and structured products.

Risk Management in Financial Markets*
Gives an overview of risk management in the context of portfolios of mixed income securities and derivatives, as well as dealing with credit risk.

Corporate Investment and Financial Policy*
Examines how to apply corporate finance concepts in a wide variety of business situations via the use of case studies.

Non-Dedicated Courses

International Finance*
Examines recent developments in international finance, incorporating theoretical, empirical, policy and institutional dimensions.

Quantitative Security Analysis*
Using information in financial statements and macro-economic variables to come up with the inputs into Merton-type models of viewing corporate securities as contingent claims on a firm’s assets.

Entrepreneurial Finance*
Evaluates business plans, growth opportunities and Venture Capital (VC) financing, covering a broad set of instruments used by entrepreneurial firms. 

In exceptional cases it may be possible to take an unlisted Finance Department optional course with the approval of the Programme Director.

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses in the Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.

You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will always notify the affected parties as early as practicably possible and propose any viable and relevant alternative options. Note that that the School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to events outside of its control, which includes but is not limited to a lack of demand for a course or programme of study, industrial action, fire, flood or other environmental or physical damage to premises.

You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. Please note that changes to programmes and courses can sometimes occur after you have accepted your offer of a place. These changes are normally made in light of developments in the discipline or path-breaking research, or on the basis of student feedback. Changes can take the form of altered course content, teaching formats or assessment modes. Any such changes are intended to enhance the student learning experience. You should visit the School’s Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the updated graduate course and programme information page.

Professional Development Programme

Overview

The Department of Finance runs an extensive Professional Development Programme alongside the Academic programme in order to support and prepare students to enter the job market. Starting in the pre-sessional course in September, students are given a wide range of careers support, from CV workshops and application advice to sector overviews and opportunities to meet and network with recent alumni who are working in London.

We run a number of events to best prepare students for the competitive financial services sector job market:

Introduction to careers in Finance

City Speaker Series

CV and cover letter workshops

Consulting case study course

1-to-1 CV checking

Networking skills session

Job application form skills session

Alumni panel and networking reception

Throughout the year, in addition to the great service offered by LSE Careers, the Department of Finance provides tailored, individual careers support to its students via a number of highly experienced sector consultants and Associate Programme Directors, each with significant experience of working in financial services.

We also spend a training a day at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, host a Financial Modelling workshop, and offer an Applied Computational Finance course. More information on these opportunities can be found below.

RADA training day

Students spend the day at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) Studios taking part in a day of communication and personal impact clinics, which aim to increase levels of self-awareness and help students to make a positive impression in a professional context.

Working on core skills to become effective and influential communicators, students will learn to use the body and voice to positive effect, and to develop a free and open physical presence. Students will also explore techniques for delivering a successful video interview, by becoming familiar with the particular risks and pitfalls associated with distance interviews.

Drawing on more than a century’s experience of what is required to make actors excellent communicators, you will leave RADA with the tools and techniques to help you start your professional communication on the right foot.

Financial Modelling workshop

This workshop gives students the opportunity to understand how theoretical finance concepts integrate with Excel models used in financial practice. This will help students both in the Programme curriculum and during the job application process.

Students will acquire basic skills relevant for entry investment banking positions in M&A, Leveraged Finance, Project & Infrastructure Finance, Distressed & Restructuring, Valuation, Equity Research, Capital markets, Asset Management and Private Equity (Growth Capital, LBO, Distress, Infrastructure).

Applied Computational Finance

Applied Computational Finance is a non-assessed, optional course which begins as an introduction to basic Matlab and then progresses to the simulation of individual securities, which a special focus on the predictability and fat tails features of volatility. Simultaneously students will examine data to test how well our models approximate the real world. They then move on to modelling portfolios of multiple securities and testing the CAPM and the Fama-French three factor models. Finally, students will use numerical techniques to price options and to construct a yield curve.

Teaching and assessment

Our philosophy

Our philosophy of finance education is based on the belief that a sound basis in academic theory is crucial for long-term success and our faculty are leaders in their field, regularly publishing new and innovative research which ensures that our teaching is always at the cutting edge of finance theory. However, theory is symbiotic with application. The MSc Finance and Private Equity programme contains a number of bespoke applied courses which are taught using case studies, interactive discussions and visiting expert speakers, and are specifically designed to enable students to gain deeper practical insights and links to the City.

Teaching and learning

Unlike the majority of MSc teaching at LSE, the dedicated MSc Finance and Private Equity courses are taught in a single three hour session, rather than a formal two hour lecture and a one hour associated class (at another time). This less formalised division between lecture and class makes it easier to teach with case studies and is also more in line with the teaching style used in business schools. The teaching allows the study of core theoretical concepts, whilst also allowing students to gain a practical understanding of the application of these concepts.

The majority of courses use case studies and practical homework problems to underpin the theory studied. In addition to the set work, you are expected to undertake a significant amount of reading and independent study throughout the year.

Since working well in a group is a key skill to develop and is particularly important to employers, some optional courses require you to participate in group work, for formative and/or summative assessment.

You can view indicative details for the teacher responsible for each course in the relevant course guide.

Formative work

This is coursework that does not count towards your final grade. For the majority of courses, you will be set weekly problem sets which you should complete before the following week’s class, where the teacher will work through solutions and answer questions. This provides you with an idea of how well you understand the material throughout the year. An indication of the formative coursework and summative assessment for each course can be found in the relevant course guide.

Summative work

This is coursework that counts towards your final grade. All of the dedicated courses on the MSc Finance and Private Equity programme contain a summative coursework element.

Different courses set different types of summative work, however students should expect two or more pieces of work to be submitted over an eleven week term. Some courses require weekly submission of problem sets which all make up a small percentage of the final grade.

Exams

Exams will take place during the Summer Term exam period, which runs from late April until the first week of June. The exam timetable is confirmed during Lent Term.

In both FM422 and FM423 you will take two summative assignments, set during lecture time, under exam conditions. Each assignment will contribute 10% towards the final course grade.

Academic support

All academic faculty schedule weekly office hours in which any student may visit them to discuss academic issues. In some cases students may be able to arrange a time to meet with a member of faculty outside of their office hours.

The MSc Finance and Private Equity Associate Programme Director acts as the main pastoral and academic supervisor for all students on the programme. The Associate Programme Director works closely with the Programme Director and the Programme Manager, and is able to advise students on general issues regarding the programme. In addition, she has extensive experience of the financial services sector, enabling her to provide a high level of careers support.

There are also many opportunities to extend your learning outside the classroom and complement your academic studies at LSE. LSE LIFE is the School’s centre for academic, personal and professional development. Some of the services on offer include:

How to read effectively

Academic writing and critical thinking

Developing leadership skills

Study/work/life balance

Preparing for the world of work

Cross-cultural communication and teamwork

LSE is committed to enabling all students to achieve their full potential and the School’s Disability and Wellbeing Service provides a free, confidential service to all LSE students and is a first point of contact for all disabled students.

Careers

Professional Development Programme

See the Professional Development Programme section on this page.

City Speaker Series

During September the Department organises a number of City Speaker lecturers where practitioners from range of different areas of finance are invited in to talk to our students about their roles and the skills required to succeed. These sessions offer an informal opportunity for students to learn about specific sectors within finance and to assess their fit for specific careers and roles.

In previous years the City Speaker Series has included representatives from:

Aberdeen Asset Management

Citi

Credit Suisse

CQS

Fidelity

Goldmans Sachs

Houlihan Lokey

HSBC

JP Morgan

McKinsey

Moelis & Co

Morgan Stanley

Nomura

Proctor & Gamble

Standard Bank

Alumni network

The Department’s multiple well-established master’s programmes mean we have a large and wide-ranging alumni network. Students get direct access to this through the alumni networking events that take place during the pre-sessional, Michaelmas term and Lent term.

With alumni in top jobs and senior positions in London and overseas, this great international network has brought employment opportunities directly to our current students as former graduates and their employers look to hire the very best.

The Department has a strong presence on LinkedIn and encourages all alums to connect with us and to keep us updated as their careers progress. The Department LinkedIn pages facilitate online engagement between alums and contain details of news and events as well as programme specific groups.

In the past we have had great success linking up students to alumni and also alumni from different classes with each other, forming both professional and personal bonds.

Interaction with part-time students

One of the advantages of running both the MSc Finance (full-time) and MSc Finance (part-time) programmes is that there are opportunities for students to interact with each other. This is particularly useful for full-time students building their network of professional contacts.

Twice a year the Department organises an MSc Finance Networking Evening where students from both programmes and alumni are able to socialise and meet.

LSE Careers

LSE Careers is a far-reaching resource available to LSE students and alumni, and is one of the best in the UK. Once registered at LSE you will be able to access the variety of resources and services it provides. These include:

Recruitment fairs

Company presentations

Interview and application skills sessions

Personal careers meetings

CV checking

Advice sessions

LSE is very fortunate in attracting the top recruiters in many sectors which enables the careers service to run an LSE-exclusive vacancy board full of internships, voluntary, part-time and graduate positions. In many cases, recruiters actively target our students and only choose to visit certain university campuses.

During the Michaelmas Term it is likely that there could be a careers presentation or event that you wish to attend every day of the week.

Graduate destinations

Graduates of the Department have excellent career prospects relative to their peers. Our MSc programmes prepare students for a range of careers in investment banking, consulting and the wider financial services sector, as can be seen in the Department of Finance Employment Report.

Our graduates take up demanding positions across a diversity of organisations spread around the globe. Some engage in their own start-ups, others join investment banks, brokerage houses, consultancies, financial boutiques and industrial concerns.

Top employers this year:

JP Morgan

Goldman Sachs

Deutsche Bank

McKinsey & Company

Morgan Stanley

Boston Consulting Group

HSBC

Nomura

Top employment locations

London

Singapore

Hong Kong

Frankfurt

Beijing

In addition to the internationally recognised research environment and academic rigour of its teaching programmes, a great advantage of studying at LSE is the reputation it holds amongst employers for producing high level graduates. Both the LSE Careers Service and the Department of Finance aim to help its students be as successful as possible on the job market once they graduate from the programme.

Class profile

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Assessing your application

Minimum entry requirements

Undergraduate degree Upper second class honours (2:1) degree or equivalent in any discipline and good quantitative skills. Admission to this programme is very competitive. In previous years the majority of students accepted into the programme had obtained 1st class honours degrees or the equivalent.
Quantitative skills The mathematics used in the programme includes basic calculus and statistics, so applicants are also required to have studied a minimum of A level Mathematics (or its equivalent).
GMAT/GRE GMAT or GRE is required for all applicants without a UK undergraduate degree (GMAT strongly preferred). GMAT is recommended for applicants with UK undergraduate degrees, especially those whose quantitative skills are not demonstrated by their undergraduate studies, or those who did not achieve or are not expected to achieve a first class degree. More information about GRE/GMAT
Professional experience Work experience (either through internships or full employment) is not a pre-requisite; however, applicants who have some professional experience should include this in their application, as it may strengthen their application.
English language You may also have to provide evidence of your English proficiency, although you do not need to provide this at the time of your application to LSE. See our English language requirements.

We welcome applications from all suitably qualified prospective students and want to recruit students with the very best academic merit, potential and motivation, irrespective of their background.

We carefully consider each application on an individual basis, taking into account all the information presented on your application form, including your:

Academic achievement

Additional test scores

Two academic references

CV

Personal Statement

See further information on supporting documents

You should note that there are always many more applications than places available and possession of the minimum entrance requirements does not guarantee that you will be offered admission. It is therefore in your interests to apply as early as possible.

When to apply

Applications for this programme are considered on a rolling basis, meaning the programme will close once it becomes full. There is no fixed deadline by which you need to apply, however we encourage you to apply early to avoid disappointment. Details on how to apply.

To be considered for any LSE funding opportunity, you must have submitted your application and all supporting documents by the funding deadline. See the fees and funding section for more details.

Important information

The MSc Finance (full-time) and the MSc Finance and Private Equity are identical programmes with the exception of one exclusive, mandatory course in Private Equity available only to MSc Finance and Private Equity students, in which those students must do their dissertation.

Therefore you should not select one of these programmes as your first course choice and the other as your second course choice. Instead you should select your preferred programme only. If the MSc Finance and Private Equity is the preferred option, you should demonstrate why you are particularly suitable for, and want to study, private equity.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees 2018/19 MSc Finance and Private Equity

UK/EU students: £34,200
Overseas students: £34,200

Every graduate student is charged a fee for their programme. The fee covers registration and examination fees payable to the School, lectures, classes and individual supervision, lectures given at other colleges under intercollegiate arrangements and, under current arrangements, membership of the Students’ Union. It does not cover living costs or travel or fieldwork.

Fee status

For this programme, the tuition fee is the same for all students regardless of their fee status. However any financial support you are eligible for will depend on whether you are classified as a Home (UK/EU) or Overseas student, otherwise known as your fee status. LSE assesses your fee status based on guidelines provided by the Department of Education.

Further information

Fees and funding opportunities

Deposit

To secure a place on the programme offer holders will be required to pay a deposit of £3,500 within four weeks of receiving their offer.

Fee reduction

Students who completed undergraduate study at LSE and are beginning taught graduate study at the School are eligible for a fee reduction of around 10% of the fee.

Please refer to the Fees Office website for further information.

Scholarships and other funding

The School recognises that the cost of living in London may be higher than in your home town or country, and we provide over £11.5 million in scholarships each year to graduate students from the UK, EU and overseas.

This programme is eligible for needs-based awards from LSE, including the Graduate Support Scheme, Master's Awards, and Anniversary Scholarships.

Selection for any funding opportunity is based on receipt of an application for a place – including all ancillary documents, before the funding deadline.

Funding deadline for needs-based awards from LSE: 26 April 2018.

In addition to our needs-based awards, LSE also makes available scholarships for students from specific regions of the world and awards for students studying specific subject areas. 

Check the latest information about scholarship opportunities

Antoine Faure-Grimaud Scholarships

These scholarships vary in amount (and will be put towards the tuition fees in the first instance), and are offered to successful applicants to MSc Finance (full time) and MSc Finance and Private Equity.

The Department will select candidates on a rolling basis and will consider academic merit and financial need, by using the application to the Graduate Support Scheme alongside the application for admission to LSE.

More information on the Antoine Faure-Grimaud Scholarships.

Government tuition fee loans and external funding

A postgraduate loan is available from the UK government for eligible students studying for a first master’s programme, to help with fees and living costs. Some other governments and organisations also offer tuition fee loan schemes.

Find out more about tuition fee loans
Find out more about external funding opportunities

Student stories

Patricia Amoah Ntim

MSc Finance and Private Equity
Accra, Ghana

trishAmoahNtim170x230

LSE has impressed upon me the certain truth that knowledge should never be the exclusive to the wealthy. All stand to benefit from broader learning, greater challenges and improving their wider knowledge, allowing them to pursue their chosen careers. At LSE we have been given the opportunity to meet a variety of students and academics, and we are encouraged to exchange our knowledge and resources. Through the opportunity LSE has given me I now have the ability to reach my potential and inspire others to do the same.

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