Watch this intro video to learn more about the Specialization curriculum and Capstone Project!
The Finance for Everyone Specialization will help you learn the language of finance and understand how the flow of money relates to the most important key social issues influencing our lives and communities. You’ll examine the connections between global and local finance; the flow of assets through businesses, governments, and other institutions; and the commodity, bond, and equity market dynamics that create and destroy financial value. When you complete the Specialization, you’ll be able to better understand both global financial news and your own personal financial decisions.
Finance for Everyone: Decisions
Finance for Everyone: Decisions will introduce you to the workings of the free markets and the foundations of finance. You will learn how free markets and their “creative destruction” provide the architecture for the global economy and how those same markets move money in ways that create and destroy wealth. Your financial toolkit will include timeless concepts like compounding, discounting, annuities, effective interest rates, and more. You will also learn how to simplify important financial calculations and apply that knowledge to real-life decisions that can influence everything from how you pay for your car to where you live. Through peer review you will publish your view on an issue important to you. You will also discover how your applied decisions connect to bigger questions relating to changing market conditions as you prepare for the second course in F4E: Markets.
Finance for Everyone: Markets
Markets begins with one of the most common and important elements of the financial system – interest rates. You will learn why interest rates have always been a key barometer in determining the value of everything. You will explore the changing influence of interest rates; the impact of interest rates on consumption, investment and economic growth; and the bizarre realities of negative interest rates. Markets explains how interest rates change the value of all financial instruments, highlighting the role of the bond and stock markets that have toppled empires. We take a closer look at the equity pricing models and equity markets that reverberate across the globe, and explore everything from the first stock ever issued – by the Dutch East India Company – to the little-understood but powerful derivative securities market. By the end of the course, you will have developed insight into the intersections of the financial markets with worlds of policy, politics, and power. You will have demonstrated that insight by teaching an important financial concept and translating a financial product or transaction to someone who will clearly benefit from your advice.
Finance For Everyone: Value
In Value, you will explore the most powerful generator of value in the world – ideas. Ideas are the engines of productivity, both in the private and public sectors. You will learn about the universal frameworks that determine how ideas and money interact, leading to the allocation of financial resources. We will identify components of cash flow for any project, business or venture as the most essential ingredients of value. We also assess the investment techniques used to give life to some ideas while killing others. This course will help you understand pricing, diversification, uncertainty and even behavioural approaches to dealing with risk. Using Nobel Prize-winning insights, you will learn how to measure the size of the risk premium and build valuation models. We’ll even connect evidence-based science with common-sense analysis to give you better tools for understanding why values are what they are, and for positioning yourself more effectively to participate in financial markets. You will be immersed in case based learning to integrate some of the powerful frameworks introduced in Value.
Finance for Everyone: Debt
In Debt, we take on one of the most challenging financial questions that remains unresolved: How much to borrow? We start by demonstrating why using debt has always been and continues to be a great temptation, particularly when borrowing costs are historically low. We identify conditions for selecting the optimal amount of debt for a corporation looking to maximize its value. You’ll become fluent in related concepts like norms and benchmarks. You will explore these and other factors that influence debt for individuals and for public sector organizations -including governments, who are the largest consumers of debt. Like pollution, debt creates systemic risks even for the people and organizations that don’t create it. This course discusses the imperative of limiting and reducing debt and the costs to all of us if we don’t. We build on case based learning giving you opportunities to interpret, uncover and acquire financial information that is often hidden or missing. We also summarize important threads from previous courses to give you a deep and cohesive understanding of when debt works for you and when it becomes your worst enemy.
Finance for Everyone Capstone Project
Each course in F4E offers key insights and knowledge you will be able to apply in real-life situations. You’ll test drive those insights through activities and assessments that will influence your key money Decisions, your participation in financial Markets, your experience in preserving or creating Value, and in managing Debt. These activities are designed to immerse you in financial thinking by giving you a safe environment for buying and selling and for making, creating, simulating, writing, and teaching. Each activity is a milestone in your learning process and each milestone has a product that will be part of your learning portfolio. The Capstone Project is the culmination of your F4E experience. It will engage you in a series of scaffolded and reflective exercises focused on a single aspect of the specialization selected by you to match your learning goals, and will help you create a piece of work that reflects your new knowledge and showcases your new skills for your employer, colleagues, friends and family.
No previous knowledge is required. It is recommended that learners have basic mathematics knowledge.