Finance is a broad term encompassing many things about the science, development, and management of funds and investments. In particular, it deals with questions of why and how individuals, companies or even the government gets the money required for their projects or purposes-called capital in the business context. Some large businesses have finance departments in their businesses. Other small businesses have finance departments as well.
Most of the time, personal finance pertains to managing your own personal financial affairs. It usually means that you have some investment fund, perhaps in stocks or mutual funds, which you use to handle your own investments. You do this by having a financial management plan, or a portfolio of investments, with differing sizes and maturity dates.
Finance plays an important role in business and personal life. For example, in determining whether to buy or sell a stock, company shares or bonds, managers of financial institutions often consult finance. They look at the performance of their investments to make overall decisions. Finance can also guide other key decisions made by managers such as when to buy or sell stock or when to buy or sell certain bonds or securities. In fact, in some respects finance is even more important than finance in large and growing companies since they depend on short-term investments made for immediate profits.
There are two main ways in which finance develops and helps managers make decisions. The first is through internal management function such as planning, collecting, organizing and disbursing information regarding investments and determining where those investments should be invested. The second is external management function, which is exercised by investors, institutions or governments. This function is aimed at achieving financial goals such as long-term returns to the shareholders or by developing adequate infrastructure and preventing short-term losses by preventing stock price fluctuations. Finance helps determine where to invest, how much and at what rate.
As stated above, the main objective of the public finance field is to ensure the efficient management of financial assets. Apart from this, the field also provides support for elected officials and citizens during economic hardships. Finance can help provide relief to households that are experiencing financial problems by providing funds to cover monthly bills. Additionally, public finance helps manage resources for projects such as repairing or improving roads, buildings, bridges, airports, railroads, etc. Therefore, the profession includes a variety of activities including the prevention of loss and damage due to natural disasters, emergency management, investment and development, budgeting, financial stability, monetary policy, tax management and the preparation and approval of tax obligations.
A career in the public finance profession involves various degrees and concentrations including finance, accountancy, economics, auditing, taxation and corporate law. For a bachelor’s degree in finance, students must enroll in a four-year university that offers a major in accounting, finance, economics, or other similar majors. For those pursuing a master’s degree, a bachelor’s degree in business, math or applied sciences is usually required along with a dissertation. For additional information regarding career opportunities in the corporate finance field, contact the human resources department of your prospective school or college.