Careers in Investment Management for MBAs

What is Investment Management?

In today’s thriving economy, Investment Management is a growing business. Investment Management is the management of a whole spectrum of bonds like debt, deposits, shares, future derivatives, etc. Investment Management has two sectors – the Asset Management sector and the Wealth Management sector. While Wealth Management is to do with financial planning and portfolio management for investors with high net worth, Asset Management deals with portfolio management of mutual funds and funds of funds.

Investment Management is a low risk but high reward field as investment managers get paid according to the money they handle, and not the actual profit or loss they make. Therefore, moving up the social and job ladder in Investment Management is relatively easy – the more money you handle and make, the higher you get to move up (“Investment Management.”).

Who is an Ideal Investment Manager?

Ideal candidates are dynamic, quick-witted innovators; passionate about helping their clients meet their objectives. Their communication skills are over the roof and they can effectively build strong relationships in a high intensity and high-powered environment, where multitasking and innovative thinking are a must.

A typical Investment Management MBA pursuer is evaluated upon four qualities: leadership potential, academic capacity, contributing ability, and internal motivation. While the field is a goldmine, breaking into it can be a bit of a challenge. Large investment firms only hire a small number of individuals due to its highly competitive nature. Only the best are picked for the top most firms, and even then, the industry will always value experience and age above all. Thus, most Investment Managers find that the best way to break into the industry is if you have connections, or though large mutual fund companies who can holistically train you to take on more responsibilities (“Investment Management Preparation.”).

How to Get Into Investment Management?

Currently, the universities best equipped to train you in the field are offering such courses along with MBAs and MFM. SEBI, the regulatory body has mandated certain certifications of any one to advise on Investments. However, before advising it is equally important to keep a check on the market movements and other economic scenarios.

What sets these universities apart from the remaining is that you gain firsthand experience with current theories and practices for investment management analysis. By taking up subjects like accounting, finance, management strategies, etc. through experiential learning, you improve and fine-tune your investment banking and fund management skills. Additionally, since these universities also have close relations with high-class investment firms like Kotak, India Infoline, Religare, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, campus placements can be highly beneficial (“Investment Management Preparation.”).

What will One Have to Do as an Investment Manager?

A typical job description for an Investment Manager is to create different numerical platforms and prototypes for company funds. They need to help clients understand today’s evolving world of stock exchanges and funds, to shape their long-term investment goals. They also create and manage customized solutions for insurance companies, individuals, etc. to allocate assets appropriately. Managers need to analyze and recommend chances of success for various opportunities for asset and investment allocations, based upon the market research done.

How Much will One Make as an Investment Manager?

The mean salary for Investment Manager is approximated to be 5lacs to 8 lacs. Newly graduated MBAs can receive anything from Rs. 2 lacs to 3 lacs as a starting salary. The pay scale can be higher depending upon the individual skill and employer profile thus it is very important to sharpen your skill before and after entering the field.

What is the Current Investment Management Market Like?

In today’s world, banks are increasingly facing regulatory scrutiny on pay and other bonuses. Thus, more and more students are moving away from banking to investment management, as along with the growth in asset management, a whole new range of jobs open up.

Most of companies finds it tough in getting appropriately skilled workers, which was why there is a rising demand for investment managers. Fund houses are predicted to grow exponentially in the next few years with growth in Indian Financial Markets.

Companies especially want MBA graduates with previous experience, who can analyze data, make accurate predictions and handle their clientele relationships and consequent money in a professional manner. However, an MBA isn’t the only route to investment management success. The rising popularity of the CFA as a standard qualification in the Investment industry is also opening up new doors to the industry.

What is the Guarantee that One Will Succeed in Investment Management?

While there is no guarantee, per say, the chances of success are quite high in the Asian, South American and the Middle Eastern industries as these are expected to hold a significant amount of global assets under management by 2020. Presently, the global asset management industry is likely to present more opportunities in Europe and Asia, which could be very positive for countries like India and China.

Also, companies are starting to push some areas of their industry towards the ‘new kids’. Segments like fixed income and commodities trading has been handed over to new undergraduates and graduates, as the new style of management is to find people who’re smart and then teach them what they need to know duly on the job.

Therefore, the Investment Management industry is a newly developing industry, full of new opportunities for success.

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