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The worldwide financial crisis that began in 2008 provides dramatic evidence of the need for better financial management. The global finance concentration within Claremont Graduate University's MA program in economics is designed to help leaders in business or policy positions develop and apply the skills needed to avert crises and to manage them when they occur. It emphasizes not only financial, but also political issues central to the work of today’s business executive.

This degree offers each student exposure to multi-faceted, cutting-edge methods and integrated approaches to effective decision-making.


This program offers excellent preparation for successful careers in business and financial institutions, consulting, and in governments, international organizations and NGOs, since it focuses on the key interrelationships among commerce, finance, and public policy.

The Master of Arts in Economics—Global Commerce and Finance (36 units) offered by the Department of Economics at Claremont Graduate University offers analytical rigor and an emphasis on the interdependence among the economic and political environments and business and financial decision making.  The goal is to equip students to become organizational leaders who can assess economic, social, political, and commercial issues from a variety of complementary perspectives. This professional master’s degree draws on the contributions of SPE faculty in applied economics and financial analysis, predictive modeling, political economy, the new institutional economics, and behavioral and neuroeconomics and finance to give our students the advantage of seeing cutting edge methods applied to real world problems.


A key dimension of future business competition and the effectiveness of governmental, international and non-profit organizations will be the ability to gather and analyze key information effectively and use it to make the right decisions. Such analytic factors go far beyond the use of the latest technology for information processing and mathematical modeling. These are important, but as the recent financial crises have demonstrated, they are not a substitute for asking the right questions. This requires a broader framework of understanding. Helping students master the key elements of this broader framework lies at the heart of our program in global commerce and finance.

We stress understanding of the key interrelationships among national and global level economic, political and financial interactions and their integration into the process of effective decision making. The goal is not to produce narrow experts in one specialty, but to provide the basic tools and insights in order to help our graduates interact productively with the experts and provide leadership for the organizations in which they work.

Both business and social issues are typically viewed through a variety of different lenses or mental models, that the effective leader is one who can converse across these different perspectives. Our focus on effective decision making runs throughout the curriculum and includes not only technical analysis, but also common biases and how to avoid them.

Students who do not already have a strong background in quantitative methods are required to begin the program in the first summer session in order to complete the two course sequence in quantitative methods before the fall semester begins. Elective courses for the program are also available during the summer.


Master of Arts in Economics - Concentration in Global Commerce and Finance


This Master's degree concentration requires 36 units and can normally be completed in two summers and two semesters.  It is designed for professionals in business, government,  international and non-profit organizations.  It provides a highly structured program drawing on applied economics and financial analysis, predictive modeling, political economy, new institutional economics, behavioral and neuroeconomics and finance to create a broad, robust framework for understanding global economic, political and financial interactions.


Students without a strong background in quantitative methods should consider starting in the summer with a two-course quantitative methods sequence.  Some electives will also be available during the summer. 


Students will also have the option of taking an additional twelve hours to earn a certificate of advanced study in their field of specialization.


Core Courses


1.        Econ351: The Global Political Economy

2.       Econ 350: Global Money and Finance

3.       SPE 471: Strategic Modeling for Politics, Economics and Business Decisions

4.      SPE 324: Economics of Management and Organizations

5.       Econ 336: Financial Economics OR Econ 337: Behavioral Finance and Risk Management

6.      TNDY401i: Nature of Political Inquiry

7.       PP481: Quantitative Research Methods


Elective Courses


Two additional approved courses from a specialization area such as


1.        Predictive Modeling (PP438)

2.       International Finance (Econ 358, Econ 359)

3.       International Trade (Econ 347, Econ 374)

4.      Economic Development (PP 336, SPE 302)

5.       Globalization (PP371, PP 411, PP417)

6.      Political Economy and Public Policy (PP 330, PP350)

7.       China and the Global Economy (Econ 342, SPE297)

8.      Financial Economics (Econ 336, Econ 337)

9.      Quantitative Methods (Econ 308, Econ 382, PP 481, PP 482, PP 487)

10.    Neuroeconomics and Behavioral Economics (SPE301, Econ318, Econ319).


Faculty contacts:   



Contact Information:

For program inquiries
Annekah Hall
Assistant Director of Admissions

For application questions


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