learning finance on your own?

slinky's picture
Rank: Chimp | 9

I'm making the move from a software developer at a tech company to a software developer at a hedge fund.

I don't have time to go to school to get a masters in finance, but I'd like to gain a similar amount of quant/finance knowledge on my own.

Any schools that have their entire finance curriculum online? lectures/videos/ppt/etc?

What books should I read / in what order?

Comments (30)

Mar 18, 2012

I have found the Itunes U lectures to be very helpful...you can access a ton of free lectures on there from professors at many different universities.

Mar 18, 2012

I believe Damodoran teaches a free valuation course online.

Mar 18, 2012

kahn academy is a great resource

http://www.khanacademy.org/

Here's the thing. If you can't spot the sucker in the first half hour at the table, you are the sucker.

Mar 18, 2012

CFA

Mar 18, 2012

Rosenbaum and Pearl's book on ibanking is good.

Mar 18, 2012

CFA probably would be a pretty good measuring stick of a solid financial knowledge base for someone in your situation.

Mar 18, 2012

What type of strategy does the fund run? Understanding that cold should be top priority.

You can learn the theories from books / classes but just as important is having a nuanced understanding of the geo-political climate and who the key decision makers are. The best way to get this is by reading as much news as you can get your hands on every day.

Reading the thoughts of respected investors also helps immensely.

Yra Harris (Few posts a week): http://yrah53.wordpress.com/ John Hussman (Sunday night / Monday morning): http://www.hussmanfunds.com/weeklyMarketComment.html
Plenty of others too.

Mar 18, 2012

Thanks for the info

kahn academy seems like a neat site, I'll spend some time poking around.

Damodoran - I follow his blog and have read a couple chapters from his little book on valuation. Going thru his course online is definitely something I'll get around to.

Itunes U -- never used it before but already found some useful classes on it -- may prove the most useful

The biggest problem with this approach though is its a bit haphazard -- if there's a good masters in math/finance or financial engineering or mba program that has all/most of its classes publicly available online that would make following along the path much easier.

CFA -- I'm a bit skeptical that the study material might be dry since its just a test prep. If I don't care about actually getting a CFA (I might care about it later, but not now), then are its books actually still worth using?

Mar 23, 2012

The CFA is considered by many to be the best overall educational resource for the fundamentals of finance. The materials are basically a lesson plan to teach someone the fundamentals of finance from beginning to end. It's more than just test prep, it's an educational resource. If you look at the sample chapter at the CFA website you will see what I mean.
Schweser makes study materials and a lesson guide for learning the CFA, which actually includes lecture videos. It is very expensive but I know that if you are resourceful you can find it for free ;) (hint hint)
I think that would probably be the best, most structured approach.

And I also agree that Khan Academy is great. The videos are very clear, concise, and easy to follow. From the titles it looks like if you watch all the Finance videos you will end with knowledge comparable to most MBAs.

You could also just purchase a book on the subject. Most university courses are, after all, usually structured around a textbook. Find a good textbook that is being used by an MBA program and buy an old edition.

A friend of mine also sent me slides from his undergrad portfolio management class. They are very good. If you want them PM me and I'll share them with you

Dec 15, 2012

Just read the academic journals Journal of Finance, Journal of Financial Economics, ect. A smart programmer like you should find this stuff simple. :)

Dec 15, 2012

WS Training videos are key.

Reading the WSJ is to familiarize yourself with finance, wall street, business happenings etc. Read all of it.

Dec 15, 2012

Really depends on what side of finance you want to work on. Do you like studying financial statements/accounting/corporate strategy/deals or macroeconomics and public markets? The reason why I ask this is because if you're looking into IBD/Research/Fundamental analysis types jobs (a fair assumption given your consulting interviews), your time is better spent learning accounting and model building, not the WSJ. However, if you're interested in working on a trading floor, or doing something involving public markets... start reading everything. Which do you want to do?

Source: Made the transition from a non-finance background (humanities) to an IBD summer, then helped out with the launch of a hedge fund. Have interviewed for both IBD, trading, and even consulting jobs. Am happy to explain the difference.

Dec 15, 2012

I hope I do not sound completely ignorant.

I would be interested in IBD probably. Do you think I should look for a summer analyst? I graduated college in 2012. Is it even possible for me to get a summer analyst gig that I can hopefully use to leverage a full time deal?

I don't know much about trading? What does a trader do exactly?

I know consulting very well, but it is also the most general.

IBD basically evaluate if deals are good or not. They have assets and try to use assets as a form of debt or loan and are essentially the middleman between two companies. Is that somewhat correct?

Dec 15, 2012

WSO is obviously also a great place to learn. But WSO has a lot of different threads, so it may be tough for someone who's quite green to know where to start and find old or current threads that are extremely useful. Sometimes it takes some basic knowledge to know the right kind of questions to ask to learn more.

In terms of accounting and finance type interview questions, you can check out WSO's interview guides, or you can also check out Breaking into Wallstreet (BIWS) guides (which is created by M&I's founder). I personally prefer BIWS's materials because I think - from a concept and understanding perspective - it goes deeper, and it's useful even for someone who's quite seasoned in finance. But having said that, I haven't looked closely at WSO's new material. I would say WSO is probably more 'direct' - to the point - and may be better for someone who's just starting out and doesn't need the deeper details.

Macabacus is also a terrific place to check out. It's got free financial models, and free info to provide you with a deeper understanding of finance concepts. http://www.macabacus.com/

Hope that helps.

    • 1
Dec 15, 2012

[quote=Kanon

WSO is obviously also a great place to learn. But WSO has a lot of different threads, so it may be tough for someone who's quite green to know where to start and find old or current threads that are extremely useful. Sometimes it takes some basic knowledge to know the right kind of questions to ask to learn more.

In terms of accounting and finance type interview questions, you can check out WSO's interview guides, or you can also check out Breaking into Wallstreet (BIWS) guides (which is created by M&I's founder). I personally prefer BIWS's materials because I think - from a concept and understanding perspective - it goes deeper, and it's useful even for someone who's quite seasoned in finance. But having said that, I haven't looked closely at WSO's new material. I would say WSO is probably more 'direct' - to the point - and may be better for someone who's just starting out and doesn't need the deeper details.

Macabacus is also a terrific place to check out. It's got free financial models, and free info to provide you with a deeper understanding of finance concepts. http://www.macabacus.com/

Hope that helps.

[/quote]

That advice definitely helped me. SB for you maam. (edit)

I'd be grateful if you could advise me here:

http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/bo-to-ib-ana...

Thank you!

Dec 15, 2012

I have to welcome you, otherwise it would seem like nobody has welcomed you!

Welcome!

"Every man should lose a battle in his youth, so he does not lose a war when he is old"

Dec 15, 2012

Hello

Dec 15, 2012

Thank you very much guys!

a dream that you do not fight for, will haunt you for the rest of your life

Dec 15, 2012

trip post

Dec 15, 2012

trip post

Dec 15, 2012

trip post

Dec 15, 2012

What do you mean by "trip post" sorry this is the first forum I've joined

a dream that you do not fight for, will haunt you for the rest of your life

Dec 15, 2012

hello!

Dec 15, 2012

Welcome!

Dec 15, 2012