Economics and Finance

Guclu Atinc (Interim Department Head)
Location: McDowell Administration Building, Room 102, 903-886-5681, Fax 903-886-5601
Economics and Finance Web Site

The department offers the Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Finance and the Master of Science degree in Finance. These degrees prepare graduates for career positions in all areas of finance, including investment management, financial management, credit and financial services, and related areas. The department also offers minors in economics and personal financial planning. The personal financial planning minor is registered by the Board of Examiners of the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards. A minor in finance is also available to both undergraduate and graduate students, as well as an MBA minor in finance. In addition to the common body of knowledge in business, a graduate with a major in finance possesses the following competencies with domestic and international dimensions: financial analysis; financial institutions, markets; securities investments and portfolio management; short and long term financial planning. Brokerage firms, commercial and investment banks, insurance companies, governmental agencies, and other financial intermediaries routinely employ finance graduates.

Students seeking a bachelor’s degree in any of the following majors must complete:

  1. degree requirements for the Bachelor of Business Administration degree,
  2. Core Curriculum Requirements, and
  3. the College of Business course requirements (refer to those sections of this catalog).

In addition, courses in the major must be completed as shown in the program description.

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ECO 1307 - Economics of Personal Finance
Hours: 3
The course is designed to help students become prepared for a financially challenging world and to introduce the concepts and methods of personal financial planning. The financial planning process, the time value of money, taxation, credit, housing insurance, employee benefits, family economics and building a personal financial plan will be explored. The course is designed to integrate subject matter into a comprehensive format enabling students to understand and demonstrate the ability to develop a personal financial plan and to increase financial literacy. Special Projects include the students reviewing their credit report, creating a debt repayment plan, monitoring their spending habits, identifying their retirement needs.

ECO 2301 - Prin Macro Economics
Hours: 3
Introduces the student to the workings and interrelationships of the U.S. and world economics. Principles of economic analysis including measurement of aggregate economic activity, national income determination, money and banking, monetary and fiscal policy, and business fluctuation. Emphasis is given to analyzing real world problems such as poverty, inflation, unemployment, and economic instability.

ECO 2302 - Principles of Micro Economics
Hours: 3
Principles of Micro Economics. Three semester hours. Introduces the student to the basic concepts and tools of analysis in microeconomics. Focuses on the operation of markets, with emphasis placed on the analysis of current problems such as health care, the environment, crime, education and regulatory reform. A major concern is how prices of individual goods and services are determined and how prices influence decision making.

ECO 302 - Business and Economic Statistics
Hours: 3
This course introduces students to descriptive statistics (measures of central tendency and variation and representing data graphically) and statistical inference. Inference will involve sampling techniques, estimation, hypothesis testing and simple regression. Applications emphasize continuous improvement of products and services.

ECO 309 - Economic Forecasting
Hours: 3
Introduces the student to a variety of econometric and forecasting techniques and their application to business and applied policy analysis. Emphasis will be on enhancing the student’s ability to combine these tools with the latest analytical software/ technology and data in order to test meaningful policy hypotheses. Prerequisites: ECO 2301, 2302; ECO 302.

ECO 331 - Intermediate Macroeconomics
Hours: 3
Intermediate Macroeconomics. Three semester hours. (1) An analysis of national income and its components. Emphasis is placed on the relationship between saving, investment, and employment. Prerequisite: ECO 2301.

ECO 332 - Intermediate Micro Economics
Hours: 3
Intermediate Micro Economics. Three semester hours. (2) Demand, cost, and supply functions of firms; sources of data for their estimation; functions of prices and markets. Application of principles to empirical problems, decisions, and situations. Prerequisite: ECO 2302.

ECO 350 - Professional Practices for Economists
Hours: 3
This course provides students with valuable technical and communication skills for career success, highlighting best practices for navigating job markets. Students will be trained in advanced techniques with leading data management software for economic and operational applications. In addition, this course emphasizes communication skills to maximize the value of the information presented through a custom communications program. Prerequisites: ECO 2301, ECO 2302.

ECO 410 - Environmental Economics
Hours: 3
This course applies the basic analytical tools of economics to explain the interaction between the marketplace and the environment, the implications of that relationship, and an examination of effective solutions. Particular emphasis given to agricultural and other renewable resources. Prerequisites: ECO 2302.

ECO 428 - International Economics/Finance
Hours: 3
An analytical approach to assessing and understanding current impacts international economies have on the United States. Emphasis is on gains from trade, economic growth, exchange rates, price formation, trade policy, and political considerations. Prerequisites: Junior standing. Crosslisted with: ECO 528.

ECO 431 - Internship
Hours: 0-3
This course provides an opportunity for selected students to earn elective credits in Economics through supervised work experience with area business firms under the supervision of a faculty member. Prerequisites: Approval of the department head.

ECO 456 - Health Economics
Hours: 3
This course examines the application of economic principles to the allocation of scarce resources in health care; the use of economic theory to understand problems of organization, delivery, and financing of health services; and the choices available to society regarding these issues.

ECO 489 - Independent Study
Hours: 3
Independent Study. One to four semester hours. Individualized instruction/research at an advanced level in a specialized content area under the direction of a faculty member. May be repeated when the topic varies. Prerequisite: Consent of department head.

ECO 490 - H Honors Thesis
Hours: 3-6
Honors Thesis in Economics. Three semester hours. This course satisfies the requirements for honors thesis and oral examination on the student's chosen topic.

ECO 491 - H Honors Readings
Hours: 3
Honors Readings in Economics. Three semester hours. This course satisfies the requirements for honors readings in economics on the student's chosen topics.

ECO 497 - Special Topics
Hours: 0-4
Special Topics. One to four semester hours. Organized class. May be repeated when topics vary.

FIN 304 - Introduction to Business Finance
Hours: 3
Basic concepts of business finance with emphasis on global and ethical issues, total quality management, production of goods and services, and various laws and regulations that affect the financial environment in which the firm operates. Basic elements of business finance, the financial environment, financial institutions, security markets, interest rates, taxes, risk analysis, time value of money and valuation. Maximizing value of the firm using financial analysis and planning, working capital management, cost of capital and capital budgeting. Prerequisites: Acct 222; ECO 2301, 2302, MATH 1325.

FIN 312 - Money, Banking & Financial Markets
Hours: 3
The nature and evaluation of money and its role in determining the overall level of economic activity. The course also examines the role of banking, central banking, and monetary policy as they apply to financial instruments and institutions in the context of global financial markets. Prerequisites: ECO 2301, 2302, MATH 1325.

FIN 340 - Fundamentals of Real Estate
Hours: 3
The financial, social, legal and regulatory environment affecting real estate investing; the factors affecting the availability and sources of mortgage funds; tools used for market research and forecasting; applying processes of analysis for the various types of real estate investments.

FIN 385 - Principles of Risk & Insurance
Hours: 3
This insurance planning course looks at the basics of insurance and risk and their role as they relates to financial planning. The topics covered include annuities, disability, long-term care including social security, Medicare and Medicaid. It also includes types of life, health, automobile insurance plans. Prerequisites: FIN 304.

FIN 400 - Principles of Investments
Hours: 3
Principles of Investments. Three semester hours. (1) Introduction to the basic principles of investing in debt and equity securities which includes: the study of the behavior of securities markets; mechanics of security analysis and investing; economic affects on prices resulting from dynamic political, social and regulatory influences on the financial environment; and risks, such as those caused by influences of international changes in demographic diversity of the world's countries on domestic securities markets. Prerequisite: FIN 304.

FIN 404 - Advanced Financial Management
Hours: 3
Intermediate techniques of financial management. Emphasis on cash budgeting, capital budgeting, and financial impact of alternative financing methods in both short and long terms, financial engineering, and ethical and global issues with related demographic diversity effects. Prerequisites: FIN 304.

FIN 410 - Analysis of Financial Derivatives
Hours: 3
This course provides a broad introduction to the options, futures, swaps and interset rate options markets. These derivative securities play an integral part in managing risk for many progressive companies, portfolio managers, and sophisticated investors. Prerequisites: FIN 304 and FIN 400.

FIN 415 - Fixed Income
Hours: 3
This course introduces students to the fundamental principles, theories, and practices of fixed income pricing and valuation. It provides students with a rigorous analysis of the bonds international markets, fixed income trading strategies, advanced valuation methods of various fixed income instruments, and the different types of the risks involved. Prerequisites: FIN304, FIN400. Crosslisted with: FIN 515.

FIN 420 - Entrepreneurial Finance & Venture Capital
Hours: 3
The goal of this course is to help students understand the dynamics of the capital food chain within the context of the entrepreneurial ecosystem affecting the global economy. To this end, we explore various stages of venture capital investing such as seed, start-up, early, mid and later. Next, we introduce the venture capital model and the valuation aspects of entrepreneurial finance. There is a strong emphasis on modeling cash flows as the most critical component of venture capital decision making. The mechanics of venture capital financing in the form of term sheets, business plans and due diligence process are discussed with respect to deal structuring (the entrepreneur perspective) and deal evaluation (the venture capitalist perspective). Prerequisites: FIN 304 with a minimum grade of C. Crosslisted with: FIN 520.

FIN 429 - Financial Markets and Institutions
Hours: 3
This course examines the economic role of financial institutions and their relationship to money and capital markets. Prerequisite: FIN 304 or FIN 312.

FIN 430 - Principles of Financial Planning
Hours: 3
Advanced techniques of personal sector cash flow, asset and liability management, life cycle financial planning, investment management, tax planning, and retirement and estate planning. Prerequisites: FIN 304.

FIN 431 - Internship
Hours: 0-3
The goal of this course is to gain relevant work experience in the student's field of interest by developing specific work related skills to improve marketability upon graduation. Students will also build a "network" of professional contacts. Prerequisites: FIN 304 and FIN 400 or departmental approval.

FIN 434 - Risk, Insurance, and Estate Planning
Hours: 3
Insurance and estate planning for individuals, families, and small businesses, applies risk management principles to evaluate various insurance products, including life, disability, long-term care, health, homeowners, auto and liability. Prerequisites: FIN 430.

FIN 436 - Retirement Planning & Employee Benefits
Hours: 3
This course provides an introduction to retirement plans and employee benefits. The emphasis is on the decision making process of the individual in consultation with the financial planner. After a thorough review of retirement funding, this course discusses qualified pension plans, profit sharing plans and stock bonus plans as well as distributions from and administration of these plans. Other topics include IRAs, SEPs, 401(k), 403(b), and 457 Plans, Social Security, Deferred Compensation and Non-qualified Plans. Employee benefits are explored as both fringe and group benefits. Pre-requisite: FIN 430

FIN 438 - Comprehensive Financial Planning and Presentation
Hours: 3
This course will require students to utilize all of the elements of financial planning. The course will require students to use education planning, investment planning, estate planning, retirement planning, tax planning and insurance planning to generate a comprehensive client plan and presentation. The final product will be a written comprehensive financial plan and oral presentation of that plan. Prerequisites: FIN 400, FIN 430, and by department approval.

FIN 440 - Financial Statement Analysis & Valuation
Hours: 3
The goal of this course is to provide the analytical framework students need to scrutinize financial statements, whether they are (i) evaluating a company's stock price, (ii) determining valuations for a merger or acquisition, or (iii) calculating the value of a start-up company from the perspective of a venture capitalist. By understanding the dynamic nature of financial ratios and evaluating the trends in historical series, students will be able to interpret financial statements in today's volatile markets and uncertain economy, and allow them to get past the sometimes biased portrait of a company's performance. Moreover, the course reflects changes in the financial reporting landscape, including issues related to the financial crises of 2008-2009. Prerequisites: FIN 404 with a minimum grade of C.

FIN 444 - Lions Students Managed Fund
Hours: 3
The objective of this course is to provide students a unique learning experience through hands on management of a real money portfolio. Students will apply finance theories acquired to make investment decisions in the context of a U.S. large-cap core equity portfolio. Following a structured framework, students will research the macro-economy, assigned sectors and industries, identify and recommend specific stocks for the fund, as well as balance and monitor the portfolio performance. This course is particularly beneficial to students who aspire to have careers in fields such as equity research, asset / portfolio management, wealth management, investment banking, or private equity. Prerequisites: FIN304, FIN400.

FIN 450 - Financial Modeling
Hours: 3
This course is intended for students who wish to implement the concepts of finance studied in introductory and other finance courses using Microsoft Excel and other software programs. The course provides students with the opportunity to develop the skills needed to build financial models. The course primarily focuses on models used for valuation, capital budgeting, cost of capital and portfolio models. Prerequisites: FIN 304 and FIN 400.

FIN 460 - Fundamentals of Behavioral Finance
Hours: 3
The standard approach in finance theory is based on the assumption of rational and unemotional economic agents. However, the anomalies in the financial markets have shown evidence to the contrary. The course examines how the insights of behavioral finance complement the traditional finance paradigm and shed light on investors' trading patterns, the often anomalous behavior of asset prices, and various Wall Street institutions and practices impacting both firms and individual consumers. Prerequisites: FIN400. Crosslisted with: FIN 560.

FIN 471 - International Business Finance
Hours: 3
The goal of this course is to help students understand issues and questions which concern financial management of international corporations. The course introduces students to the international aspects of corporate finance, including such topics as the international monetary system, balance of payments, foreign exchange markets, international parity conditions, foreign exchange exposure and management, foreign direct investment, international venture capital and entrepreneurship, global financing, and international cost of capital and capital budgeting. The course will emphasize the link between theory and applications. Pre-requisite: FIN 304. Crosslisted with: FIN 571.

FIN 476 - Real Estate Investment and Valuation
Hours: 3
This course is a study of the major aspects of real estate finance and investment. Commercial properties will be emphasized. The course begins with an overview of the fundamentals of income-producing real estate and builds on these concepts as we consider the forces that influence the cyclical, fragmented and inherently local business of real estate investment. The course will expose students to current “real world” real estate finance and investment situations and people who shape them.

FIN 477 - Mortgage and Real Estate Finance
Hours: 3
In this course, the student is introduced to the principles and methods of financing real estate. The sources of funds, types, and contents of financing instruments, and the role of various financing institutions, both private and governmental, are covered in this course. The latest electronic technology is incorporated wherever possible.

FIN 489 - Independent Study
Hours: 3
Individualized instruction/research at an advanced level in a specialized content area under the direction of a faculty member. May be repeated when the topic varies. Prerequisites: Consent of department head.

FIN 490 - Honors Thesis
Hours: 3
Individualized instruction/research at an advanced level in a specialized content area under the direction of a faculty member

FIN 491 - H Ind Honors Readings
Hours: 3
Individualized instruction/research at an advanced level in a specialized content area under the direction of a faculty member.

FIN 497 - Special Topics
Hours: 1-4
Special Topics. One to four semester hours. Organized class. May be repeated when topics vary.

Augustine C. Arize
Regents Professor
B.S., M.B.A., University of Central Arkansas; Ph.D., North Texas State University.

Kishor Guru-Gharana
B.A., M.A. Tribhuvan University; M.A., Southern Methodist University; M.S., University of Texas; Ph.D., Southern Methodist University.

Singru Hoe
Associate Professor
BA., Fu-Jen Catholic University, Taiwan, MBA., George Washington University, Ph.D., University of Texas at Arlington

Stanley Holmes
Assistant Professional Track
B.B.A., and MS., Texas SM University-Commerce, Ph.D., Texas A&M University

Lirong Liu
Associate Professor
B.A., Jilin University; M.A., Kent State University; M.S., Ph.D., University of Tennessee

Gregory Lubiani
Assistant Professor
B.B.A., M.A., Ph.D., University of Memphis

Mary Francis Miller
Assistant Professor
B.S., M.S., New Mexico State University; Ph.D., University of Texas-Dallas

Srinivas Nippani
Regents Professor
B.C., M.C., Osmania University; M.S., Indian Institute of Technology; Ph.D., University of Arkansas.

Asli K. Ogunc
Associate Professor
B.B.A., Marmara University; M.B.A., Western Michigan University; M.S., Ph.D., Louisiana State University.

Jared Pickens
Assistant Professional Track Faculty
B.S., Texas Tech University; M.S., Kansas State University; Ed.D., Texas A&M University-Commerce

Steven S. Shwiff
B.A., University of Texas; M.A., St. Mary’s University; Ph.D., Texas AM University.