Master of Science in Banking and Finance

Looking for a vibrant and international oriented learning community at a top 100 university with challenging and interactive courses taught by highly qualified staff in a historical cityLearn more about the strenghts of our faculty!

The mission statement of the MBF

  • Provide state-of-the-art advanced education in banking and finance to a selected group of master students with the necessary economic and quantitative background.
  • Analyse the interactions of banking and finance with risk management and with macroeconomic conditions.
  • Focus on the development of quantitative, data processing and econometric skills applied to banking, finance, risk and portfolio management.

Why choose banking and finance?

Financial insights are embedded in the macroeconomic context

The interrelationships between finance, banking and the macroeconomic environment are studied extensively. Advanced courses in the economis of financial markets and monetary economics describe the larger setting in which finance should be situated.

You will become familiar with the most recent techniques used in finance

All courses are strongly founded in academic research. Students will be guided through recent academic papers and encouraged to use quantitative tools and models to analyze real-world problems. An advanced course in financial econometrics will provide the students with the necessary background.

Enjoy interactive education and train your presentation skills

The broad range of teaching and work formats creates a stimulating learning environment. In the MBF a lot of time is devoted to classroom discussions and the presentation of case studies and papers. This way students train their oral and written presentation skills. They learn how to develop and defend their arguments as well as to (critically) assess the arguments of fellow students and teachers.

The integration of theory and applications

The MBF performs a bridge function between academic work and practical tools, applied in papers and cases, often in varying teams. Lectures are given by both research professors and specialists from the financial and consultancy industry. The graduation project combines an internship with a master thesis and consists of solving a financial problem provided by an asset manager, consulting firm, financial institution, or fintech company. This allows students to demonstrate that they can use the theoretical concepts and the empirical techniques they acquire throughout the year to analyse and solve real-world problems.  

Quality control throughout the program

The quality of the teaching staff is appreciated by the students, including their strong link with academic research.The quality of the master projects is undisputed. The quality of the graduates is solid; they all land in challenging jobs. The close cooperation with the financial industry offers many possibilities for synergies.

An attractive study environment

The city of Ghent hosts the largest student population of the country; the University alone accounts for 40 000 students, enrolled in 9 faculties. The Faculty of Economics and Business Administration is situated close to the Medieval city center. Theatres, museums and sporting facilities are within walking distance. Student housing is comfortable and affordable.

A specialized program

All banking and finance courses are specialized and advanced. The admission procedure leads to a homogeneous group of graduate students.

The mission of the program is clear and ambitious

Both former students and the financial sector testify that the MBF achieves its mission. The coherence of the program and the specialized nature of the courses allow the students to acquire advanced knowledge and develop up-to-date financial skills.


Eline SergeantOne year ago, I graduated from the University of Ghent with a degree in Finance and Risk Management. I wanted to extend my financial knowledge and improve my data science skills, and decided to follow the Advanced Master in Banking and Finance. It was quite an intense year filled with numerous group assignments and hands-on projects. We really received an elaborate overview of various subjects within the banking and finance fields. This extra year provided both practical and theoretical insights that will be very useful for my further professional career. - Eline Sergeant                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Maarten ContantAfter graduating with a master’s degree in Corporate Finance and during a research internship in asset management I felt the need to extend my knowledge in financial markets and quantitative skillset. For me, the demanding MBF curriculum proved to be an excellent solution. It enabled me to improve my programming and research skills, introduced more advanced models in financial risk management, fixed income and portfolio management while keeping up with the latest trends in financial markets, the banking landscape and monetary policy. Moreover, the MBF goes beyond the pure academic: via group assignments we practically implemented the concepts we have learned during class. The 2-month master’s dissertation project / research internship really enabled us to enlarge our network and to put theory into practice. The small group of students makes that our professors are very approachable to ask questions, not only for theoretical concepts but also for career advice and much more. The rewarding MBF is certainly an added value for anyone that is willing to put in quite some effort to advance in finance and banking. - Maarten Contant
Ian LenaersMBF at UGent was a logical choice for me because I wanted to expand my knowledge and expertise in finance. The program differs from those at Business Schools in Belgium because it gives an overview of all branches of the 'more quantitative' finance world. Furthermore, interaction in small groups with very approachable professors and fellow students is an absolute plus. On top of that, the practice-oriented master's thesis is a major asset, to get your hands dirty and learn to work autonomously. My MBF study period was a year in which I was challenged academically and had to work hard, but this resulted in fantastic achievements and results. - Ian Lenaers                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

Course content and programme

The goal of this specialised program is to form experts who are able to base their analysis of financial problems and developments within a sound theoretical and quantitative framework. Their analysis should also enable them to work out or to adapt existing (company) strategies.

Thorough understanding of the complex relationships and dynamics of financial markets and institutions requires insight in many disciplines. Knowledge about the organisation of financial markets and the mechanics of the assets traded is not sufficient, if it is not supplemented by awareness of macroeconomic and monetary concepts. Moreover, the quantitative nature of finance also requires a sound command of econometrics and data processing skills. It is precisely the need of the financial community for people who are able to combine these economic, financial and quantitative skills that led the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration at Ghent University to organise the Master in Banking and Finance.

This Master draws heavily upon the expertise of the young team of teachers and researchers from the Department of Economics. This department groups sub-fields such as monetary economics, banking, microeconomics of financial markets, investment analysis, financial econometrics, data science and risk management.

As outlined in the mission statement, the MBF’s objective is to equip the students with advanced analytical and quantitative skills in the fields of banking and finance. Next to the emphasis on data science and econometric techniques, other unique features of the program are its focus on risk management and the link with the macroeconomic environment.

These features are translated in the design of the program, in the timing of the courses during the academic year and in the mix of teaching methods and learning techniques in the various courses.

The decision on the contents of the courses is partly driven by progress in the academic literature and partly inspired by the needs of finance and banking professionals in post-crisis modern financial services firms.

Check the complete master programme in banking and finance

Student profile

The Master program is intended for economists who feel the need for a serious in-depth training in finance and banking.

Diploma requirements

If you are eligible for the MBF this implies that have or will soon obtain a master degree in economics, applied economics, commercial sciences, business engineering, or equivalent.

Language requirements

English at level C1 is required upon enrolment.

Career perspectives

Almost all students are employed within three months after graduation and find their future employer before graduation. Students graduating from this Master typically occupy jobs in:

  • investment analysis (in institutional investors, pension funds, insurance companies, banks)
  • risk management units of financial and corporate organisations
  • asset and liability management units of financial intermediaries
  • study department of a central bank or government agency
  • financial consulting firms
  • supervisory agencies for financial markets and institutions (EBA, EIOPA, ECB, ESMA, NBB)
  • university or research departments (Ph. D. research)

Teaching staff

Frank De Jonghe is a partner at EY EMEIA Financial Services. He holds a PhD in Theoretical Physics from the University of Leuven. Before joining EY EMEIA Financial Services, he was a partner at Deloitte, he worked for Euroclear as internal auditor, and at ING IM as mutual fund portfolio manager.

William De Vijlder has been working in asset management since 1989. Since 2014 he is Group Chief Economist of BNP Paribas. He obtained his PhD at Ghent University in 1990 and has been part-time professor at the same university since 1991. 

Michael Frömmel obtained his PhD at the Leibniz Universität Hannover, Germany , in 2003 with a dissertation on long-term trends in exchange rate volatility. His research focuses mainly on international finance, the foreign exchange market and transition economies. He worked as a visiting researcher at the Bulgarian National Bank and the Hungarian National Bank and joined the Department of Financial Economics at Ghent University in 2007. Michael Frömmel is (co-)author of articles inter alia in the Journal of Common Market Studies, the Journal of Comparative Economics and the Journal of International Money and Finance.  

Rudi Vander Vennet is professor at the Department of Economics at Ghent University. After obtaining a degree in economics and a master in finance, he was enrolled in a Ph.D. program at the University of Rochester, New York. His Ph.D. dissertation analyzed the performance effects of European bank mergers and acquisitions. He is (co-) author of various articles on banking and monetary topics in, e.g., Journal of Money, Credit and Banking or Journal of Banking and Finance and he has written several contributions in books dealing with European bank markets and the EMU. In 1999 he received two important scientific awards. Next to his academic duties, he has acquired valuable experience as a member of the board of dir ectors of a number of holding companies and financial institutions and as a consultant for various financial companies.

Kris Boudt is professor of finance and econometrics. He obtained his PhD in 2008 for his developments in the modelling and estimation of financial risk under non-normal distribution. He has published his research in the Journal of Econometrics, Journal of Portfolio Management, and the Review of Finance, among others. He loves developing data science methods to solve challenging problems in economics and finance. He is an active contributor to the open source community.

Gerdie Everaert obtained his Ph.D. at Ghent University in 2000 with a dissertation on public capital, economic growth and the labour market. He teaches econometrics at Ghent University. His current research interests are panel data econometrics, time-varying parameter models, state space unobserved component models, Bayesian econometrics and the macro econometrics of fiscal policy, government debt sustainability, consumption dynamics, technological change and economic growth. He published in a variety of academic journals including Journal of Applied Econometrics, Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, The Econometrics Journal, Econometric Reviews and Public Choice.

Koen Inghelbrecht obtained his Ph.D. at Ghent University in 2006 with a dissertation on the comovement on asset returns. He teaches research methods in finance, investment analysis and portfolio management and advanced asset allocation at Ghent University. His current research interests are empirical asset pricing, market anomalies, asset allocation strategies, liquidity risk, credit ratings and behaviour and performance of institutional and individual investors. He has published in the Review of Financial Studies, Journal of Empirical Finance, Journal of International Money and Finance and Journal of Business, Finance and Accounting.

Selien De Schryder obtained her PhD at Ghent University in 2014 with “Topics in Monetary Economics” as the title of her dissertation. Since then, she has been working at the department of Financial Economics as a postdoctoral assistant. Her research focuses on diverse domains in the monetary economy including analyses of the global oil market, country-specific exports, inflation dynamics in connection with credit and financial cycles and, to conclude, wage indexation. The application of macro panel data and techniques is the main characterizing factor. Her paper on global oil market dynamics is forthcoming in the Energy Journal.

Jeroen Kerkhof is currently a Director at VAR Strategies BVBA, a consultancy and analytics firm in the area of financial engineering & risk management. He is also lecturer at Solvay Brussels School, was the acadamic director of the advanced master in Quantitative Finance ast Solvay Brussels School for several years and was a visiting lecturer at Imperial College business school in London and Singapore Management University in Singapore. Previously he was Head of non-linear rates at Danske Bank in Copenhagen, Head of Analytics at Jefferies, Head of Interest Rate and Inflation Desk Strategies at Morgan Stanley Europe, a Director in the Fixed Income Modelling Group at Lehman Brothers and he was in the Product Development Group at ABN-Amro Bank in Amsterdam during his PhD. Jeroen’s work focuses on interest rate, inflation and interest rate hybrid derivative products. He holds a PhD in Quantitative Finance from CentER at Tilburg University (Netherlands) and has published several articles in international refereed finance journals.


How to apply

In order to apply, you have to start up the online application procedure before the deadline. The procedure is different for students with a Belgian university degree and students with a non-Belgian university degree.

Students with a Belgian university degree

People meeting this requirement should fill out the application form and mail it to Next, you are invited to take an admission test, the purpose of which is to determine the prior knowledge of banking and finance research, of quantitative skills, and English. (Partial) exemption of this admission test can be offered if, on the basis of the curriculum, the individual seems to be familiar with these basics. More information about the admission test can be found below.

Students with a non-Belgian university degree

There are 2 compulsory procedures for admission. We advise you to start both procedures at the same time.

  • The first procedure allows us to ascertain whether the applicant has the necessary background to be able to successfully participate to the MBF program.
  • The second procedure is the general acceptance procedure set up by Ghent University.

Procedure 1

First of all, we ask you to complete the application form and mail it to

Students are required to take an admission test, the purpose of which is to determine the prior knowledge of banking and finance research, of quantitative skills, and English. More information about the admission test can be found below.

For any questions you may have with reference to procedure 1, please contact

Procedure 2

In order to be able to register for the Master program in Banking and Finance, you MUST register at Ghent University. Therefore, you need to start the following online application procedure:


Application deadline

Applications for academic year 2023-2024 are closed (except for Belgian citizens).

Applications for academic year 2024-2025  start on 1 October 2023. 


Non-EEA citizens: before 1 April 2024

EEA citizens: before 1 June 2024

Admission Test

The admission test consists of three parts:
(1) Financial Economics
(2) Investment Analysis
(3) Econometrics and Statistics.

Here you find more details on the exact content of the admission test and references to books suited to prepare for the admission test:

Financial Economics:

A very useful handbook to prepare the financial economics admission test is: Barbara Casu, Claudia Girardone and Philip Molyneux, Introduction to Banking, latest edition, Pearson. Focus especially on parts 1, 2 and 3.

Stanley G. Eakins, Frederic S. Mishkin, Financial Markets and Institutions, latest edition, Addison-Wesley.
Focus on the chapters about central banks, monetary policy, banking, bank regulation, interest rates, terms structure.

Investment Analysis:

Bodie, Kane & Marcus, Investments, latest edition: Chapters 5-24 (except chapters 17 & 19) or Sharpe, Alexander & Bailey, Investments, latest edition, Prentice Hall.

The following topics should be thoroughly understood: Risk Aversion, Capital and asset allocation, Single and multi-index models, CAPM and APT, Market efficiency, Dividend Discount Models, Interest rates and bond pricing, Bond portfolio management, Options and futures, Binomial model for option pricing, Portfolio evaluation.

Econometrics and Statistics: 

Gujarati, Basic Econometrics, latest edition, McGraw-Hill, part I, II and Chapters 18-20 in part IV

The following topics should be thoroughly understood:  Two-variable regression analysis, Classic normal linear regression model, Interval estimation and hypothesis testing, Multiple regression analysis, Dummy variable regression models, Multicollinearity, Heteroscedasticity, Autocorrelation, Model specification and diagnostic testing, Simultaneous equation models, The identification problem.

Tuition fees

Non-EEA citizens:  € 1903.60

EEA citizens:  € 1903.60

These tuition fees are applicable for academic year 2021-2022 and can change in academic year 2023-2024.

Practical information


Questions or more information about the admission requirements, application procedure or tuition fee?

Any further questions about the MBF, contact