Online Bachelor Degree in Finance

In the financial sector, the regulatory reforms and economic reforms have driven growth especially in the positions of financial analyst and personal financial advisor. The online bachelor’s degree in finance is designed in such a way to attain the financial management, interpersonal, and professional skills that you require to help companies or individuals to achieve good returns while maintaining financial and reporting integrity. A number of recognized universities have introduced various courses on online bachelor’s degree in finance. These degrees are ideally designed for the people, who reside in distant places or are unable to attend regular classes or can’t go for study due to some unforeseen reasons.

The bachelor’s degree in finance is extremely intensive as well as flexible program that covers a vast area of finance. The learner is benefited as he/she can acquire an all round knowledge about the subject. Usually, the topics for students include short and long term financing, banking relations, personal finance, investment analysis, risk management, corporate finance, financial accounting etc.

There are no strict requirements for enrollment into online bachelor degrees in finance. However, if you want to get admission to the online program, then it is essential that you hold a high school diploma. A basic knowledge in finance and a keen interest in studying the subject are essential for the successful completion of the course. It varies with institutes offering the course.

Some of the popular online bachelor’s degree in finance includes:

  • Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) – Accounting and Finance
  • Bachelor of Science in Business or Finance
  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Finance
  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration or Corporate Finance

Upon the successful completion of the bachelor’s degree in finance, you can work as an auditor, accountant, finance advisor, and a budget analyst. There are lots and lots of job opportunities in finance in various sectors worldwide. Students can also pursue several managerial jobs in several private or government sectors.

List of Universities Offering Online Bachelor Degrees in Finance

  • Colorado technical university online
  • University of phoenix online
  • Kaplan University online
  • American intercontinental university online
  • Ashford University online

The New Normal For Small Business Financing and Working Capital Management

With business financing options changing significantly during the past two years, it is appropriate to review what the “new normal” looks like so that small business owners will be prepared to cope with the challenges they now face with commercial lenders. Business borrowers are more likely to find commercial financing success by quickly accepting the fact that a “new normal” way of doing things has emerged.

The dramatic reduction in the number of commercial lenders that are actively making small business loans is one of the most significant changes in the business finance lending environment. Banks continuing to insist that they are still providing small business financing when in reality they have reduced or eliminated their commercial lending programs is an equally important part of the “new normal”.

A recent report showed that commercial lending activity fell by the biggest amount since records have been kept. This trend seems likely to get worse before it gets better because based on Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation accounting, almost one out of every ten banks is close to failing. The shaky current financial condition of many banks is further documented by reports from the Federal Reserve and United States Treasury Department that over 50 banks did not have sufficient cash flow to make their November 2009 payments for loans made by the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). The payments in question are due quarterly, and over ten banks have missed three consecutive installments. Unlike banks which have tripled and quadrupled interest rates for individual consumers missing a credit card payment, presumably the government regulators are simply hoping to get their money back from the delinquent banks.

Banks have far too often conducted business as if they have a monopoly on their small business financing services. The “new normal” for small business owners should increasingly reflect the growing realization that banks can be replaced when they stop providing an adequate level of service to their business customers.

As a direct result of the continuing shortcomings of banks in providing an adequate amount of small business financing help as noted above, for most business borrowers the “new normal” will involve a new bank or at least a new commercial lender (which might not be a bank at all). Even though banks would like their small business owner customers to keep believing that only a bank like them can help business borrowers, this is truly a myth created by the bankers themselves.

For many essential commercial finance services such as commercial mortgage loans, numerous banks have indicated that they will no longer provide such financing anymore. For specialized business finance services such as working capital management, business consulting and business cash advances, banks only rarely provide a cost-effective and realistic option for commercial borrowers. For business owners which have commercial loans or working capital financing due to be refinanced within the next three years, planning ahead will be increasingly important to the success of their small business financing. With the “new normal”, if commercial borrowers wait until their bank decides to pull the plug on future small business finance programs, the timing is not likely to be as conducive to business refinancing.

Do Canadian Banks Provide Equipment Loans and Lease Financing?

The leasing industry in Canada has historically been dominated by a number of different types of entities that provide equipment and lease financing to Canadian business.

The types of firms that are the key players in lease financing in Canada can be broken down into the following categories:

Life Insurance Companies

Credit Union leasing firms

Third party Independent Finance Companies – Canadian owner

Third party Independent Finance Companies – Subsidiaries of American firms

Captive Leasing Companies

Bank Leasing entities – Subsidiaries of divisions of Canadian banks

We would venture to say that probably 90% of Canadian business owners and financing managers think of ‘ Third Party Independent Finance Companies ‘ when they are looking to source lease financing for their equipment and capital expenditure needs.

Canadian chartered banks have moved in an out of the Canadian lease financing industry over the years. Currently only two the Big 6 Canadian banks have full fledged separate lease entities that actively market lease financing to their customers. In our opinion the reasons customers choose a bank lease financing entity are as follows;

Pricing

Existence of a Current Banking Relationship

Dollar size of transaction

Let’s elaborate a bit on those points. Because banks are in the position of having the lowest cost of capital in Canada for business financing rates on bank leasing deals tend to be excellent. On average we would observe that rates on larger deals tend to be 3-4% over the Canadian prime rate. This is excellent pricing, as independent firms tend to price at 4 to 5 to 6% over the Canadian prime rate. That is on average of course because every customer’s credit quality and situation is unique.

Business customers have bank lines and term loan arrangements with their bank. So it is a natural logical extension that they would discuss their needs with their banker, who may, or may not be able to offer a lease financing solution. We indicated that only two of Canada’s chartered banks have full fledged lease entities. Some of the other banks have leasing division, which are much smaller and more specialized in size, and some banks choose to ‘ partner ‘ with third party independent finance firms that are both Canadian or U.S.owned.

We also referenced dollar size as a key factor in a customer choosing a banking lease arrangement. Banks in Canada have virtually unlimited capital, so they certainly can choose to finance any amount they choose.We say unlimited capital, that is a bit of an exaggeration but Canadian banks are currently viewed as some of the strongest in the world re their own credit ratings and capital ratios.

Banks are traditionally a bit slower to enter into the lease financing area, and banks use the function in some respects to develop new corporate banking relationships. In fact we have observed that in the 2009 and 2010 banking environment in Canada the bank lessor in fact attempt to develop a full corporate banking relationship with customers who approach them for lease financing needs.

Leasing is a good source of profit for the banks – the banks tend to make solid credit decisions on assets and corporate credit quality, and lease pricing provides some nice yields compare to some other parts of their business.

Some banks in Canada have, in the past, purchased some of the private independent Canadian lease companies that were getting large and successful or had a specialized market or geographical niche… Banks are often quick to sell portfolios and eliminate leasing divisions when they feel that market conditions suggest that.

In summary, the Canadian leasing landscape is made up of a number of market participants. Banks play a key role, but not a dominant role in the industry. Lease financing via a bank is often a relationship driven arrangement with the business customer’s current incumbent bank. Banks who participate in lease equipment financing have excellent rates but higher credit and asset requirements. Business owners are cautioned to source the assistance of an experienced leasing advisor to determine which leasing arrangement (bank or non-bank) is best for their needs.

What Can You Do With an Online Finance Degree?

Whether you are already established in your career or just starting out, an online finance degree can open many doors. For those who are currently working, a degree in finance, particularly a Master’s in Business Administration, can mean promotion. For those who have yet to select a career path, a bachelor degree in finance can mean the choice of many excellent opportunities. In addition, having a certification such as CPA (Certified Public Accountant) is important if you want to broaden your skills or showcase your competence in the finance field.

A finance degree is essential for many positions in the insurance industry, such as actuary. It is also the degree of choice for financial consultants and investment analysts. A finance degree differs from an accounting degree in that the focus is much more on the strategy of protecting assets and building wealth than tracking activity. While accountants do perform some of the financing tasks, these same tasks are a full time job for the finance officer.

Some of the popular jobs for those with a degree in finance include:

Financial Manager – working for a bank, credit union or mortgage and finance company, as a finance manager you would be responsible for tasks such as lending, trusts, mortgages, and investments. You may even be involved with sourcing for business, directing investments of funds, running sales programs as well as managing electronic financial services.

Credit Manager – in charge of allocation and issuance of credit on behalf of the company, a credit manager is also tasked with setting the criteria for credit rating and determining credit ceilings as well as managing and checking on the status of past-due accounts.

Cash Manager – monitors cash flow in a company to effectively meet the business and investment needs.

Branch Manager – in a financial institution, a branch manager administers and manages all of the functions of a branch office, ranging from hiring staff, approving loans and lines of credit, sourcing for new business (sales and marketing) of their financial products and services and also customer service.

Risk Manager – as the name suggests, risk managers duties include among others, minimizing risk and loss that might arise from business transactions and operations, while devising the best ways to limit potential operational risks to the company.

An online finance degree can be the most convenient way for working adults to pursue their education in the most flexible way. It is also excellent for those who live a great distance from a university.

Many state universities and local community colleges offer online degrees in finance, as well as a great number of private institutions.

Attending classes online can be an excellent way to obtain your online finance degree. However, potential students should realize that they will need to be self motivated when pursuing this type of education. It is far too easy to procrastinate, and just like any class, falling behind can be disastrous.

To get the best out of your education, ensure you enroll in only accredited schools and compare the degree offering from various colleges to pick one that best fits your needs.