What is Finance?
Finance is a general term for the management of monetary resources and investment throughout the economy. Banking is a subset of finance, along with investment, financial risk management and capital markets. With so many ways to engage with money and capital goods, those interested in finance are never short of options in which to specialise.
Financial management involves considering the best ways that individuals and corporations can make their income work for them. This may mean overseeing investment portfolios, controlling the distribution of funds or interacting with the stock market.
Those who work in finance can make decisions under pressure, and are skilled at keeping up-to-date with political, economic, legal and social changes to predict how these factors will influence financial markets.
Although a separate field, economics is closely related to finance, and an understanding of both fields is vital to success in either. Financial advisors and managers must respond rapidly to economic changes, as almost all will impact the movement of financial assets and resources. The sector requires a sound knowledge of monetary policy, among many other economic principles.
Technological innovation is increasingly shaking up the finance sector.
Knowledge and understanding of different digital financial management systems, new forms of funds transfer and emerging forms of currency are becoming crucial to industry success.
Finance also uses data to make all manner of money and market predictions and decisions. An understanding of consumer behaviour is key, as is an awareness of how that behaviour can be influenced. Although many of these functions occur primarily within financial institutions such as banks, both governments and corporations will also have significant finance departments and a range of finance roles, as the movement of money and capital is almost universally relevant.
What do those who work in finance do?
Due to its size, the finance sector contains any number of diverse responsibilities and job possibilities.
You could find yourself managing the inner workings of a large financial institution. You might liaise with clients, oversee financial management staff or be responsible for communicating financial information to consumers. Interpersonal skills will serve you well, as you cultivate business relationships and maintain a network of clients.
Investment portfolio management offers numerous opportunities for those interested in wealth accumulation strategies. Those who work in this area are responsible for monitoring market trends, providing financial advice, and trading stocks, securities or commodities.
A role within a large corporation may see you draw on your understanding of economic matters, as you influence the strategic decision-making of a team, or contribute to research that influences a company’s future financial direction.
In the public sector, those with finance experience are often sought after within areas such as treasury, trade, industry and investment. Your awareness of consumer behaviour, financial strategies and risk management will see you involved in the creation and management of important national policy.
In a globalised world, specialising in finance will afford you a wealth of international opportunities. Your knowledge of international trade and experience in funds management could see you working for multinational financial institutions or organisations. Executive roles could range from hedge fund manager to Chief Financial Officer, and a wide range in between.
Explore your study options in Finance
With an advanced understanding of human behaviour and motivation, a Bachelor of Business — Bachelor of Psychological Science will empower you with the skills to maximise your employability and stand out in your future workplace. Your critical thinking, decision-making skills and knowledge of business operations will be bolstered by an understanding of what motivates employees and how to create healthy, productive work environments.Download Brochure
- Townsville: February, July
Give your career a far-reaching, competitive start with this double business and law degree. Pair your business insight in accounting, economics, management, marketing or tourism, with a strong understanding of legal principles to bring unparalleled expertise to future roles. You'll gain practical experience through real-world case scenarios, internships and mock trials in 'moot' e-court facilities. This course is an approved qualification to practise law in Queensland.Download Brochure
- Townsville: February, July
- Cairns: February, July
- Online: February, July
Explore the important and challenging work of balancing profit, policy and conservation. Develop your expertise in economic principles, sustainability practices and quantitative scientific methods. Emerge with organisational and critical analysis skills that will see you well-equipped to work within the fields of environmental policy, sustainability consulting or international business.Download Brochure
- Townsville: February, May, September
Boost your employability with JCU Commerce. Get a head start with tailored industry experience and build your network through practical learning opportunities. In assisting individuals at tax time or navigating trade with international businesses, your studies will equip you with the knowledge and skills to drive success in a diverse career.Download Brochure
- Townsville: February, May, September
- Cairns: February, May, September
- Brisbane: February, May, September
- Online: February, May, September
What jobs are there in finance?
The finance sector is large, interconnected and constantly seeking innovation – making it ripe for exploration by determined individuals. You’ll have the option to pursue many different roles across the industry.
With a JCU Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Banking and Finance, you could explore opportunities including:
- Financial advisor
- Risk manager
- Data analyst
- Foreign exchange trader
- Investment banker/manager
- Corporate financial manager
- Financial policy advisor
- Business manager.
Why study Finance at JCU?
A JCU Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Banking and Finance, provides students with the knowledge and skills to tackle foundational concepts in economics, business, markets, law and management that are necessary for success in the banking and finance sector.
You’ll develop the skills for professional decision-making across domestic businesses and international institutions. You will learn how to critically analyse quantitative and qualitative data, make judgements, and communicate your recommendations effectively.
JCU students also emerge with a sound understanding of ethical, sustainable and socially responsible methods of financial practice, and the confidence to implement these wherever they go.
All students have access to the JCU Work Integrated Learning program, where you’ll finish off your degree with professionally supported work experience. Integrate your knowledge into your practice as you learn alongside experts in your chosen field. Our course is designed to help you develop the skills you need to make an impact within the banking and finance sector sooner.
You’ll have the flexibility to study when and how you want. JCU Commerce students often balance study with industry-relevant employment. We’re here to support you with options to study online, and in a manner that suits your circumstances.
Bachelor of Commerce (Honours)
"I gained real-world connections and deep financial knowledge in this course, which provided the right formula for success in my job search. The small classes provide an excellent opportunity for stimulating discussions on global economic trends but also for pioneering research in the Honours component. Overall, the personal approach to education, as well as the flexibility and discipline that I gained during my time at JCU, have really prepared me for my current role (at the Reserve Bank of Australia)."