Home > Study > Graduate > Taught Programmes 2016 > MSc Finance and Economics MSc Finance and Economics (Research)

MSc Finance and Economics MSc Finance and Economics (Research)

About the MSc programmes 

The MSc Finance and Economics is an interdisciplinary degree taught jointly by the Department of Finance and the Department of Economics, allowing students to study in two of the most highly rated departments in their subject areas in the world. The programme draws on the School's strengths in economics, finance and econometrics to impart a rigorous and deep understanding of financial markets, grounded in financial economics and econometric methods.

Students who are interested in doctoral research will have the opportunity to transfer to the MSc Finance and Economics (Research) programme once they complete the introductory course. All applications must be made to the MSc Finance and Economics programme in the first instance as entry to the Research programme is only considered once students are registered at LSE.

Applicants for the MSc Finance and Economics should have a strong undergraduate training in quantitative subjects such as economics, maths, physics, engineering, finance or business. Candidates’ training must include at least a year of calculus and a term of linear algebra. Where appropriate, applicants may be asked to take a background microeconomics or econometrics course at the LSE Summer School as a condition of admission.

Minimum entry requirements are an upper second class honours degree from a UK university, or the International equivalent. All applicants must submit a GRE or GMAT test score with their application. Test scores must show a strong performance in the quantitative segment (above the 85th percentile). Decisions will not normally be made in the absence of this test result. Please see lse.ac.uk/admissionsEnquiries for more information. Applicants to the MSc programme may be exempted from submitting GRE/GMAT scores only in exceptional circumstances. Where this is the case, applicants should complete and submit the online GMAT/GRE waiver form on the Graduate Admissions website. Candidates are advised that requests for a waiver of this test are very seldom granted.

Programme details 

The programme enables students to examine the financial markets through in-depth analysis based on financial economics and statistical methods. Students will learn about investments, asset pricing, derivatives, portfolio management and corporate finance through the coherent lens of financial economics. The programme provides a thorough exposure to econometric methods, including time series analysis, with applications to financial models and data. The core courses emphasise analytical rigour and technical foundations, in addition to application of the theory and practical market knowledge. Through the extensive array of optional courses students will be able to deepen their knowledge in specific areas of interest.

Students are required to attend the introductory course in Mathematics and Statistics, which reviews topics such as matrix algebra, multivariate calculus and differential equations. Throughout the Michaelmas term, students will also be required to take a course in Probability and Stochastic Calculus. On completion of the programme, students will take examined courses to the value of four full units, one of which will include writing a dissertation as part of the assessment.

A more detailed description of the programme and its courses, including a comparison with other finance-related MSc programmes at LSE, can be found on the Department of Finance website.

Compulsory courses

(* half unit)

Courses to the value of one full unit selected from the following (one to be examined by dissertation and one by examination). Students on the Work Placement Pathway must also select Finance Work Placement and Assessment:

To fulfil the programme requirements, students must also complete a dissertation of 6,000 words on an agreed topic in one of the optional half-unit courses, and take an examination in the other.

About the research programme

The MSc Finance and Economics (Research) programme gives students the opportunity to take more advanced courses in microeconomics and econometrics, which will be more suited to those who plan to undertake doctoral research in the field. Students interested in the Research track should apply for MSc Finance and Economics as usual, however once they are registered at LSE and have completed the introductory course they will have the opportunity to be considered for a transfer onto the Research programme. This transfer will depend upon the student being accepted into the advanced microeconomics and the advanced econometrics courses by their respective course leaders. The programme management team will provide advice and guidance on the decision.

Compulsory courses

  • Advanced Microeconomics introduces and develops the analytical tools of graduate-level microeconomics with a special emphasis on mathematical models and provides a firm grounding in classical microeconomic theory as well as its modern development.
  • Financial Economics examines investors' behaviour, market equilibrium, and asset pricing.
  • Financial Econometrics for Research Students focuses on the advanced econometric techniques used at the research frontier of economics and finance.

Plus choose two of the half-unit optional courses listed above or from other departments depending on relevance and subject to permission from the Academic Director. Students must also complete a dissertation of 10,000 words on an agreed topic in one of the optional half-unit courses, and take an examination in the other.

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses for MSc Finance and Economics and MSc Finance and Economics (Research) 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, some circumstances may cause the School to subsequently change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. 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 circumstances outside of its control. You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee places on its courses. 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.

Graduate destinations

The MSc Finance and Economics is an ideal preparation for a variety of careers in the global financial services sector, with the emphasis on financial economics being particularly attractive to investment banks, the financial services sector more generally and to consulting firms. The programme (the research track in particular) also provides a rigorous training and preparation for doctoral research in the area.


Application code: LN43 – all applications are considered for MSc Finance and Economics. Students who wish to apply for the research track will be considered for a transfer once they arrive at LSE (check availability)

Start date: The mandatory pre-sessional course starts in August 2016

Duration: 10 months full-time only (10 month master's programmes are not compliant with the Bologna process which may affect the extent to which they are 'recognised'. For more information on Bologna, please see Bologna process)

Intake/applications in 2014: 57/1,170

Minimum entry requirement: An upper second class honours degree from a UK university or international equivalent in a quantitative subject such as economics, maths, physics, engineering, finance or business. Candidates' training must include at least a year of calculus and a semester of linear algebra (see entry requirements)

English requirement: Standard (see English requirements)

GRE/GMAT requirement: All applicants must submit a GRE or GMAT test score

Fee level: UK/EU £24,936; overseas £25,440

Financial support: Graduate Support Scheme (see Fees and financial support). MSc Finance and Economics (Research) is accredited for ESRC funding as part of a four-year award. To be considered for ESRC funding, applications must be received by 11 January 2016

Application deadline: None – rolling admissions

A photo of Azeem Ahmed, an LSE student