Friday’s Headlines: Specialized MBAs on the Rise

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Are you at risk of being a B-school jack of all traits, but master of none? A Wall Street Journal article says that MBA programs are increasingly offering specialized programs to give their grads a competitive edge. These programs are taking a cue from European schools’ long history of such degrees, and enrollment in U.S. specialized business degree programs has doubled to more than 52,000 last year, compared with four years ago.

Examples include the University of Rochester's Simon Graduate School of Business, which offers a dozen specialized master’s degrees – including those in marketing, medical management, accounting and general management. University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business is adding degrees in finance and data analytics, while New York University’s Stern School of Business offers degrees in business analytics, risk management and global finance.

Of course, these focused curricula benefit alumni in the way of salary boosts and an edge in the marketplace. But the schools are no fools. At Simon, tuition revenue for the 2011-2012 school year was $43.1 million, with specialized master’s contributing 28.1 percent, as tuition for the master of science programs start at $53,516 for the full-time program compared with $48,007 for an MBA.


Other News:

Goldman bought three Tokyo properties for $313 million in preparation for a private real estate investment trust. [Reuters]

RBS is selling 15 luxury London properties. [Bloomberg]

Jim Brown, CEO of Ulster Bank, the Irish unit of RBS, is waiving his bonus. [Reuters]

Advisors fret over new Finra suitability rules. [Investment News]

Japanese regulators have asked for trading records from 12 large securities ­companies including Deutsche and Goldman. [Financial Times]

Wall Street darling John Thaler’s hedge fund is down 20 percent. [DealBook]

The consumer Financial Protection Bureau aims to makeover mortgages. [NY Times]

Opinion: Two new books disagree on whether the hedge fund managers’ golden chalice is half-full or half-empty. [Economist]