Financial Markets Career Specialization

Specialization Details

This Specialization allows students to build their own pathway, with the objective of launching their career in the financial services sector. Students develop an understanding of capital markets and financial institutions, securities valuation, and corporate/personal financial advising. The specialization includes courses which cover the CFA body of knowledge.

Students in this Specialization often take co-op positions as Portfolio Operations Analysts, Equity Research Assistants, Investment Banking Analysts, and Private Equity Associates.


Course requirements

Specialized courses

To obtain the Financial Markets Specialization, you must complete six of the following courses (3.0 Course Credits):

  • AFM 276 - Financial Statement Analysis
  • AFM 322 - Derivative Securities
  • AFM 324 - Wealth Management
  • AFM 326 (0.25 unit) - Student Venture Fund: Analyst
  • AFM 328 (0.25 unit) - Investment Management: Junior Analyst
  • AFM 329 (0.25 unit) - Investment Management: Senior Analyst
  • AFM 377 - Private Equity and Venture Capital
  • AFM 422 - Management of Financial Institutions
  • AFM 423/ACTSC 423 - Topics in Financial Econometrics
  • AFM 425 - Fixed Income Securities
  • AFM 426 (0.25 unit) - Student Venture Fund: Associate
  • AFM 427 - Intermediate Portfolio Management
  • AFM 428 (0.25 unit) - Investment Management: Junior Portfolio Manager
  • AFM 429 (0.25 unit) - Investment Management: Senior Portfolio Manager
  • AFM 434 - Governance and Enterprise Risk Management for Global Organizations
  • AFM 470 - Financial Management of High Growth Companies
  • AFM 477 - Mergers and Acquisitions
  • AFM 478 - International Financial Management
  • SFM 310 - Sustainability in Capital Markets
  • SFM 412 - Investor Behaviour

*Both AFM 328/329 and AFM 428/429 are 0.25 credits each. These courses are taken together to fulfill the necessary 0.5 credit requirement: AFM 328 + 329 = 0.5 credits and AFM 428 + 429 = 0.5 credits. Each course runs for 12 weeks, however students earn 0.25 credit.

Mandatory AFM courses

In addition, you must complete the upper-year courses required for all AFM students.

Upper-Year AFM Courses

Mandatory Upper Year Courses

3rd Year 4th Year
AFM 311 - Connections to Ethical Context AFM 480 - Introduction to Organizational Behaviour
AFM 321 - Personal Financial Planning AFM 433 - Business Strategy
AFM 335 - Business Law for Financial Managers  
AFM 323, AFM 341 or AFM 344  
AFM 373 - Cases and Applications in Corporate Finance  
AFM 391 - Intermediate Financial Accounting 2  

Pairing Specializations

The Financial Markets Specialization is the primary choice if you are seeking a career in the financial services sector, particularly in the areas of asset management, investment and corporate banking, securities sales and trading, or complex financial planning, whether it’s with a large financial institution, smaller ‘boutique’ firm/ or advisory, or investment fund.

This Specialization is very well paired with the Professional Accountant Specialization because of the added value that having knowledge of financial reporting, taxation and performance management offers the finance professional. The Business Analytics Specialization also pairs well with this specialization because of the ongoing automation of some sector areas and the increasing importance that analytics is playing in asset allocation and portfolio management. You can also pair this with the Sustainability Specialization if you are interested in the fast-growing world of social or impact investing. Of course you do not have to pair this Specialization with a second one. You can combine this with study in a variety of fields available at uWaterloo by using your remaining electives. Popular choices are history, economics, computer science.

Connect with alumni

The alumni profiles shown below are examples of SAF graduates employed in roles that involve knowledge and skills associated with the curriculum of the common pairings of the Career Specializations referenced.

Financial Markets Alumni Profiles