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Darla Moore School of Business

Finance professor enjoys 'frontier-pushing' atmosphere of Moore School

Sept. 25, 2018

Eric Powers, associate professor of finance
for the Master of Arts in Economics (MAEcon) and MBA programs

How long have you been at the Moore School?
I arrived at the Moore School in 1998, directly from my Ph.D. program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This year marks my 20th year as a professor at the Moore School.

What do you teach?
I currently teach advanced corporate finance for the Master of Arts in Economics and MBA programs. This is a case-based course that builds skills in financial statement analysis, pro-forma budgeting, valuation, risk management, and corporate capital structure and payout policies. I also teach a large online introductory finance class for business minors.

In the past, I’ve taught Ph.D. corporate finance, the core finance course for International MBA students and Professional MBA students, fixed income securities, advanced corporate finance at the undergraduate level, and the in-person introductory finance class for business minors.

What does the Master of Arts in Economics program offer students in comparison to similar programs?
Specifically, the finance track for the MAEcon program provides a deep dive into master’s level finance coupled with solid grounding in principles of economics and statistical analysis. The combination of rigorous economic and financial training is unique to this track and program.

What are the most valuable skills that students could gain from this program?
Courses that are available to the MAEcon finance track include advanced corporate finance, investment analysis, derivative securities, fixed income securities, financial statement analysis and portfolio management. Data management and statistical skills can be further enhanced by taking master’s level classes that lead to a certificate in data analytics.

The skills developed in these courses prepare a successful student for a wide array of positions in the financial industry that require various types of financial analysis. Positions like this can be found in leading commercial banks, investment banks, institutional money managers, and government and regulatory institutions.

What do you think makes the Moore School distinct from other business schools?
What makes the Moore School special for me is that it is full of faculty and students who are working hard to push the frontiers of their disciplines forward. This energy is palpable when you enter a ground floor classroom, walk into our state-of-the-art trading lab late at night and find a group of students hashing out a trading strategy, or listen in on a conversation between professors about a new research topic they’re working on. The MAEcon finance track is a key program for transmitting that energy into the business world via our students.

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