Dual BA/MA in Economics or BBA in Economics+Finance

Hey everyone. Been following WSO for a while now but this is my first time posting. Hoping someone can shed some light on what degree would be most useful to break into finance (particularly equity/market research).

I moved to NYC after finishing an associate's degree down south right after high school, and spent a few years working before going back to school to finish undergrad. I worked at a law firm and also temped for a large investment advisory firm. Currently working in architecture doing admin and some minor accounting/finance.

As I'm paying my way through school, my options were limited financially so I settled on CUNY and started at Hunter part-time a couple of years ago. They have a challenging (albeit fairly unknown) dual BA/MA in Economics program that I've done well in so far, but the finance course offerings are scarce. The ones they do teach are a joke. I got lured in by the chance to be "more competitive" for having a masters, and to have a finance-related thesis project to prove my research and data analysis skills. I've got a 3.80 GPA and a few extracurrics, but working full time = no leadership positions. On the other hand, I've got a few years of (arguably finance-related) work on my resume.

Since the only CUNY business programs with any semblance of renown are at Baruch, I looked into taking some grad-level finance classes there, but they won't count towards my program requirements so it would be extra time+money. However, CUNY makes it easy to transfer between schools, and I'm still fairly early along in the BA/MA, so I'm now considering transferring entirely and getting a BBA at Baruch with a double major in econ and finance. I've got the econ major done already, so I'd just need to do the finance classes and I'd finish in about a year and a half. I know I need to get a summer finance internship under my belt next year, so I'm trying to ramp up my transcript with finance classes this summer and fall. I also recently finished the BMC (Bloomberg) certificate course.

I'm already aware of the disadvantage I'll be at coming from a non-target, so I know this choice is akin to picking your poison. My question is: all else equal, is a BBA in both econ and finance better than having both a BA and an MA in economics? Will the quantitative nature of a masters in economics have more weight than having just an undergrad degree? I'm not interested in (and couldn't handle) being a quant, but the econometrics in the MA is likely more intensive than anything I'd see at the undergrad level in finance.

Sorry for the lengthy post. Any insight is appreciated! Thanks in advance.

Comments (2)

Apr 7, 2016 - 1:48pm

Depends on where you want to work, but I don't think it's worth it. You're likely better off spending the extra time networking and picking up modeling in order to get into a bank (which I'm assuming it sounds like you want)

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there" - Will Rogers
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