Best Financial Modeling Courses (2020) ranked by Bankers

In Finance Courses & Certifications by Gaurav SharmaUpdated On:

Financial Modeling is an integral part of what you do in finance in general and banking in particular. In fact, it might be all you do for the first few years of your career.

Setting yourself apart during the recruitment or internship process is crucial given the severe disparity between available roles and candidate volume. As always, a good academic pedigree will go a long way, but there are other ways to boost your chances.

All the courses in this list will help you learn financial modeling, but they each offer something extra as well. That extra something might be brand value or having a classroom experience or perhaps real-world case studies. Hopefully, this article can help you  pick the one that you need to make it in finance.

Course Selection Criteria

  1. Course Quality
  2. Brand Value for CV Building
  3. Quality of real-world case studies
  4. Thoroughness of course material and applicability for real-world banking & finance professionals

The courses have been ranked based on the above criteria. The aim is to allow finance professionals better prepare for the hiring process including CV building with strong brands, interview preparation and hitting the ground running on Day 1 of your internship/ job.

1. Financial Modeling Professional Certificate from NYIF

Time to Complete: 5 days. Fully online or in-person.

Why take this course?

  • This is one of the best and most comprehensive courses you will find on financial modeling. The New York Institute of Finance produces very high-quality courses for finance professionals, and this one really belongs at the top of the pile.
  • You get hands-on guidance from industry experts in a virtual/ physical classroom environment. This really adds to the overall learning experience in my opinion. Probably because having other students around you (even if via a video link) makes learners more competitive and committed.
  • You start off an advanced excel course followed by modeling and then three full days spent on valuations. Its pretty comprehensive and should be more than enough for any analyst looking to get into finance or making a lateral move.

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2. Business and Financial Modeling from Wharton Online

Time to Complete: Around 70 hours. Fully online.

Why take this course?

  • Wharton has brought out the big guns with this course and it carries some serious brand value. You get a completion certificate that it will add some serious pop to both your CV and LinkedIn profile. Yes, that is important enough to be mentioned right at the top of this list.
  • The course quality itself is excellent and the modules are delivered by top Wharton faculty. There is indeed a focus on finance, and it covers everything from spreadsheet modeling, investment analysis and company valuation to forecasting, decision making and scenario analysis.
  • I think its pretty great value because you are getting quite a lot for a really really competitive price.
  • I recommended this to all finance interns and first year analysts.

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3. Excel and VBA Programming for Finance from NYIF

Time to Complete: 3 days. Fully online or in-person.

Why take this course?

  • You can’t be a good financial modeler if your Excel and VBA programming game is not on point. This is equally important in Sales & Trading as well as investment banking roles. As an analyst, you’ll be doing a lot of modeling.
  • This course teaches you everything from advanced excel functions and VBA programming to data analysis and using the Bloomberg terminal. It’s a meaty 3 day course and it will get you desk ready.
  • Perhaps that is the best part about this course – its focus on desk ready skills so that you can hit the ground running. Everything taught has a practical urgency to it. Which is not surprising considering NYIF has been teaching bankers and traders for almost a century now.

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4. Finance & Quantitative Modeling for Analysts from Wharton Online

Time to Complete: About 30 hours for most people. Course is available fully online.

Why take this course?

  • This course shares some material from the other Wharton Course on this list but this one is targeted towards business analysts in general who have to perform financial modeling as part of their day-to-day.
  • In addition to working with spreadsheets, students are also taught basic financial terminology and the fundamentals of corporate finance by Wharton faculty. Quality wise, this is top-notch.
  • Wharton is a solid brand to have yon your Resume. Think of this course as something you are taught in the first year of a MBA degree as the course and difficulty level is very similar to that.

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5. Certified Financial Modeling & Valuation Analyst from CFI

Time to Complete: 6 months. Fully online.

  • This is a flagship course offered by the Corporate Finance Institute and it covers the topic of modeling and valuations quite well.
  • Topics covers include financial analysis, budgeting, modeling, scenario analysis, excel and pretty much everything an analyst needs.
  • I would highly recommended this to financial analysts working at the finance departments of large corporations because it is covers all the things that they need to know rather well.

About the Author

Gaurav Sharma

Gaurav started his career as a Corporate and Investment Banking intern at Citi in 2009 and eventually ended up as an Associate Director at Standard Chartered Bank’s Wholesale Banking division a few years later. By 2016, Gaurav was consulting FinTech start-ups in London with product development in the institutional banking space. He also advises mid-market Private Equity/ Asset Management firms and Banks in North America and Europe with investments in the financial services and FinTech sector. Gaurav writes on topics ranging from European Union banking regulations and FinTech to Blockchain startups and the inevitable rise of our AI overlords! He has an Engineering degree in Computer Science and an MBA with a double major in Finance and Marketing. He is also a Certified Financial Risk Manager.