Departmental website: lse.ac.uk/finance
Number of graduate students (full-time equivalent)
Number of faculty (full-time equivalent): 35
REF: 86 per cent of the Department's research was rated world-leading or internationally excellent
Location: Old Building
About the Department
The Department of Finance is devoted to excellence in teaching and research in the full range of subfields of finance including corporate finance, asset pricing theory, risk management, empirical analysis of capital markets, behavioural finance, portfolio analysis, derivatives pricing, microstructure and financial econometrics. The Department has grown in recent years to become one of the largest and most highly regarded finance groups in the UK and Europe. It is closely associated with LSE's Financial Markets Group, the Paul Woolley Centre for the Study of Capital Market Dysfunctionality and the Systemic Risk Centre, which regularly host a wide variety of seminars, conferences and public addresses by leading academics and practitioners. With over 250 graduate students selected from a pool of top applicants worldwide, a faculty recruited from the best departments internationally, and a steady flow of distinguished visitors, we have a stimulating environment for research and learning that is on a par with the best worldwide.
LSE's reputation with employers opens up a broad range of career opportunities. The critical and analytical skills you will develop are attractive to investment banks, commercial banks, fund managers and the financial services sector generally as well as in management consulting. A number of graduates continue with further graduate study or take up top academic appointments.
Opportunities for research
The Department has a formally structured MRes/PhD Finance programme which aims to produce students whose research is of the highest international quality, and is designed to provide a broad-based training in theoretical and empirical research methods in finance. You should have a substantial academic background in finance or economics, typically at master's level. Satisfactory performance in the LSE MSc Finance and Economics and MSc Finance and Economics (Research) may meet the entrance requirements.
A PhD in Finance from LSE consists of six coursework units, largely completed over two years, followed by a thesis which is usually expected to take a further three years. There are two routes by which the coursework requirement can be completed: the two-year Track One, for students coming from relevant master's degree programmes or one-year Track Two, for those students who have already completed the MSc Finance and Economics or MSc Finance and Economics (Research) programmes at LSE, or equivalent elsewhere.
During their first year, Track One students take courses in Advanced Microeconomics, Advanced Macroeconomics and Advanced Financial Econometrics to build their core knowledge in these areas. This is followed in the second year by courses in Corporate Finance and Asset pricing, in addition to completing a research paper. In the one-year Track Two MRes, students take courses in Advanced Microeconomics, Corporate Finance and Asset Pricing in addition to completing a research paper. Both Track One and Track Two students attend a PhD seminar in Finance throughout their MRes/PhD studies.
To progress at the end of each year, students in both tracks must pass their examined courses at grades specified by the Department and make satisfactory progress in their research. Progress is regularly monitored by the Department's Postgraduate Assessment Review Panel.
We encourage our research students to participate fully in the intellectual life of the Department, and in the research seminar and workshop programmes of the Department and related research centres such as the Financial Markets Group (FMG). The weekly Capital Markets Workshops provide exposure to the work of leading academics from the UK and overseas. In addition, the FMG hosts a number of conferences each year with leading researchers and practitioners.