Sunday, March 07, 2010

Capital market courses attract younger generation

The young generation is all out to make its fortunes in the capital market. Unlike their elderly family members who occasionally dabbled in the stock market for some extra income, Gen Y is seeking its pot of gold by way of a career in the stock market. This is evident from the renewed interest in vocational courses specialising in the capital market and investments. About 23,000 candidates appeared for online certificate programmes conducted by the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) between April and December 2009. The National Stock Exchange (NSE), too, logged similar numbers for its capital markets and derivatives certificate programmes. The entry-level 3-month certificate programme on capital markets conducted by BSE has been logging 60-70 students per batch (six times in a year) over the past one year. If one goes by MF course trainers' estimates, over 11,000 candidates have appeared for the AMFI mutual fund advisory module certificate over the past 10 months. Educational institutions like National Institute of Securities Market (NISM), Financial Technologies Knowledge Management Centre (FTKMC) and Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS) are also seeing a significant rise in the number of applicants for its capital market courses.

Increasing number of students are going in for core finance courses. While we have a good line of CEO and top-level executives attending specialised course modules, the new entry-level PG Diploma in Financial Market Practice course with IGNOU has already attracted a few hundred students, said Bandi Ram Prasad, President, FTKMC. Capital markets courses can be broadly classified into three parts. The first part could be certificate modules conducted by mainly exchanges and regulatory bodies like AMFI; professionals like dealers, derivatives traders and MF advisors mandatorily need to pass certificate courses in their core work areas. These courses keep them updated. The second part could be basic capital markets courses by exchanges for anybody (mostly fresh graduates) wanting to get a first-hand market idea. The third part could be professional courses imparted by educational institutions, targeting graduates with minor work experience. Investment strategies, analytics, risk management, portfolio management and product development are some of the key modules in professional capital markets degree courses.
We have received about 7,000 applications (for 30 seats) this year for our MBA programme in capital markets, said Anupam Rastogi, Chairman, NMAT Admissions Committee. Till 2007, our major recruiters were investment banks. During recession and after that period, our students are being recruited in larger numbers by brokers and fund houses, Mr Rastogi added. Echoing Mr Rastogi, MT Raju of NISM said: Interest in capital market programmes had declined, when the market was on a downtrend in 2008. The trend is reversing now. Similar is the case with respect to jobs, when the market is trading higher, all market intermediaries recruit students. Recruitment also hit a slump when the market decline over a longer period, Mr Raju added.

According to HR head-hunters, though a professional degree sounds fancy, companies still prefer CAs or MBAs from good institutions. A degree will not really get rank freshers a good finance job. A capital markets-focused degree will look good only if the person has 3-4 years of work experience. A plain management degree from a quality institute is good enough to land in a decent job, said Gaurav Kumar, Director, Intellectual Capital. At the entry level, an MBA-Finance fresher (or a CA) from an A-grade institute could land a job that pays about Rs. 6-10 lakh annually. Management graduates from B or C grade institutes (with or without capital market specialisation) could get jobs with an annual package of Rs. 3-4 lakh. Graduates can get jobs with an annual package of Rs. 2-3 lakh.

Source: The Economic Times, March 5, 2010 (Reported by Shailesh Menon)

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