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RSM2301H – Financial Management

General Information


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Applicable Major(s):
(c) = Core, (r) = Recommended

  • Brand Management (r)
  • Financial Reporting and Analysis (r)
  • Health Sector Management (r)
  • Investment Banking (c)

Target Audience

This course covers decision making inside non-financial firms. It takes the perspective of various corporate decision makers: not just the CFO, but other functional executives as well as the CEO. We will learn how to use financial tools including Value Maximization, Cash Management, ROI, Real Options, Simulations, etc. to allow firms to accomplish strategic, financial, and other corporate goals. Since the decisions of functional managers (Marketing, HR, Operations, etc.) have to satisfy the financial goals and constraints of the firm, we will explicitly examine their decisions and their relationship to value maximization and financial risk management. We will also examine how firms can avoid “running out of money” while they grow and execute strategic plans. While the course will attract some finance specialists, it is somewhat less technical and not designed purely for bankers & investment managers compared to other finance courses. The toolsets covered and the case-based approach will appeal to non-finance specialists as well as those who will have corporate clients in the future. This course is one option to satisfy the core requirements of the investment banking major. There is no pre-requisite other than having passed Finance I and II core 1st year courses as well as the 1st year Accounting and Statistics courses. Yes, there will be a bit of math and Excel tools, but that is not the main focus of the course.


8 regular three hour sessions

Course Mission

The course is designed to deepen the understanding of basic financial management decisions within a corporation. It focuses on the application of modern financial techniques to operating and investing decisions in non-financial firms. It analyzes short-term capital management, project investment analysis & decision making within the context of the firm’s business strategy, risk assessment and modeling through real options and simulations, as well as financial performance evaluation of individuals, projects and divisions.

Course Scope

After completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Develop short-term, medium-term, and long-term financial forecasts for a business;
  • Analyze and explain the management of the operational financial resources of a firm (net working capital management, operational liquidity, as well as the cash cycle);
  • Measure and manage seasonal and cyclical uncertainty and operational financial risk;
  • Develop, analyze, and execute long-term corporate investment decisions (projects, replacement/expansion decisions, international investments, strategic investments, etc.);
  • Understand aspects of Project Finance including large-scale infrastructure investments;
  • Use real-options techniques to evaluate investments that incorporate flexibility and future information uncertainty; and
  • Use simulations to model and manage multiple risk in corporate investments.

Evaluation and Grade Distribution

One Group Case Analysis30%
One Group Mini-Video on a Technical Topic10%
One Quiz (2 hours)30%
One Peer-Review Mini-Paper10%
Class Participation20%
The homework assignments are related to the cases discussed in class, and therefore they will essentially consist of “somewhat more quantitative” case reading/preparation for class.

Required Resources

The first year finance textbook is sufficient as background reading. There will also be a reading package (mostly HBS cases and other short reading materials).

Last Updated: 2022-01-25 @ 11:42 am