The specialised study of finance becomes imperative when you have to manage the multifarious activities and are responsible for smooth functioning of the organisation as a whole, for now and in future as well. Out of the five key functional areas of any organisation- production, marketing, finance, human resource development and information technology, it is the finance function which is of leading importance since all other functions can come to naught in the absence of finance.
It is for this reason that finance professionals coming from reputed institutes and having done professional courses in finance are always the most sought after. In India, a number of post-graduate courses in finance are available. These are Masters in Finance Degree, Diploma in Finance and Certified Financial Analysts (CFA). You shall make a very clear choice of these finance courses.
CFA Vs CA : Before the CFA course became widely recognised as dealing in core finance in India, it were the chartered accountants (CAs) who have been handling matters of finance as well. But, the essential difference lies in the fact the CAs are expert in accounting and bookkeeping whereas the CFA professional deals in a range of financial management activities like equities, risk, portfolio, insurance, financial markets and many others. CAs have limited knowledge of finance whereas CFAs have specialised knowledge of the same. The CFA course is widely recognised world over by the financial institutions and provides equally good career prospects.
CFA VS Masters in Finance (MF): Though both these courses deal in finance, there is a difference between their levels of acceptance, course curriculum and certifications. Those who are looking for the �Degree’ in Finance from a university recognised by UGC, ideally opt for MF. If �degree’ does not matter and you are looking to private sector jobs, CFA is equally well accepted qualification there. The CFA is considered to be tougher in quality of education than the MF.
CFA Vs Diploma in Finance : Diplomas in Finance are offered by those educational institutes who are recognised by the AICTE. These are not the Degree courses offered by the University affiliated colleges. Financial courses are offered by top management institutes in the country.
What does the CFA equip you with? : After doing the CFA, you would be able to know how to manage wealth and investments. You will gain specialised knowledge of how to do equity valuation, how to manage risk and do insurance planning, how to create a profitable and optimal portfolio of investments and manage the same, learn about project and international finance, corporate restructuring involving mergers and acquisitions, tax and estate planning and much more. No doubt, it takes you to a much higher level of finance education and a far more rewarding international career.
Where all you can make a career? : CFAs are highly in demand in core finance sectors like mutual funds, stock markets, brokerage firms, portfolio management companies, equity planning, insurance sector, foreign exchange and risk management companies, commodities exchanges and in many other companies and institutions.