A Matter of Course: Global Financial Management

By Brigid Hamilton, '06  |  Photo by Brigid Hamilton, '06

A Matter of Course offers a snapshot of a current University class.

Taught by Tuugi Chuluun, Ph.D., associate professor of finance, this three-credit finance course—which also satisfies the requirement for the interdisciplinary global studies major—provides students with a fundamental understanding of the international dimensions of corporate finance function as they examine foreign exchange markets, foreign exchange risk and its management, and international financial markets.

What are the objectives of the course?

The objective of Global Financial Management is for students to develop a fundamental understanding of international finance and what makes it different, be it various corporate governance practices around the world or foreign exchange risk, and how global markets work.

There is an emphasis throughout the course on students recognizing how to deal with rapidly changing international markets and the imperfections that exist in these markets, while maximizing the benefits from expanded global opportunities.

What is one of the topics you discuss in class?

Foreign exchange risk has become a major risk for firms as they become more international. We discuss foreign exchange risk, and my students learn about instruments and techniques available to manage it such as currency derivatives. Despite the bad reputation financial derivatives have received following the recent financial crisis, these are powerful financial tools companies use to reduce risk. The foreign exchange market itself is the largest financial market in the world, with currencies worth more than $5 trillion traded every day.

Why do you assign each student an emerging economy to learn about?

Students investigate the opportunities and challenges of investing in various countries by conducting research on all the topics we cover in class for their countries, analyzing and synthesizing data, and giving presentations to the class on their selected countries. Given that future growth is expected to mainly come from emerging economies, obtaining a better understanding about them is highly beneficial.

How do you keep on top of the latest data?

Global markets are continuously shifting, and the data presented in even the most recent textbooks are often outdated due to the lag in the publishing process. So we use external materials from various sources including the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, Bank for International Settlements, and Bloomberg.

What do you hope your students will take from your class?

I hope students will obtain a deeper understanding of how the world economy and financial markets work, which I believe is essential knowledge for students at a Jesuit institution that is graduating global citizens. Today’s markets are incredibly interconnected, not just through trade, but also in the financial markets. For example, the financial crisis affected everyone, spreading through these markets from Wall Street and London to Nepal and Buenos Aires. Understanding these connections matters. International finance is closely linked to international economics and international business, and we talk about law and the role of different legal origins when we discuss corporate governance practices around the world.

What is different about teaching at Loyola and at a Jesuit institution?

The global perspective of the course and the focus on further development of analytical skills fit very well with the Jesuit tradition of intellectual study in pursuit of a broad range of knowledge and the cultivation of the whole person.

How does this class prepare students for their future careers?

Regardless of industry, most of today’s large corporations and organizations are multinational enterprises, and that’s where many of our students will be working. I hope the knowledge of international dimensions of corporate finance will be useful for students to succeed professionally. Even in their personal lives, because retirement investing has become an individual responsibility, knowing how international financial markets work will help individuals diversify their investments internationally.

Tuugi Chuluun, Ph.D., has been teaching in the Sellinger School of Business and Management for six years. She received her undergraduate degree in economics and master’s degree in financial economics from Ohio University, and her Ph.D. in finance from Georgia Institute of Technology. Her research and teaching interests are in corporate and international finance and social networks in finance—including a recent study about companies in “happy cities” investing more for the long term, which was featured in Harvard Business Review online. A Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charterholder, Chuluun serves on the board of the CFA Baltimore Society.


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