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Course 2019-2020 a.y.


Department of Finance

Classes 31 and 32 are reserved to exchange students

For the instruction language of the course see class group/s below

Go to class group/s: 31 - 32

CLMG (6 credits - I/II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/09)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (I sem.) - 32 (II sem.)

Class group/s taught in English

Suggested background knowledge

Students attending this course should be familiar with the basics of mathematics, statistics, financial mathematics, accounting, and financial markets and institutions. In particular, students should have reasonable knowledge of the basics in financial mathematics such as the time value of money, annuities and perpetuities; basics in statistics such as probabilities, variances/covariances and ordinary least squares; basics in accounting such as being able to read information contained in balance sheets, income statements, cash flow statements.

Mission & Content Summary

This course serves as an introduction to modern corporate finance. Corporate finance is a set of principles that govern how businesses run. It is a study of how businesses should make financial decisions - ranging from investment choices to assessing the right mix of debt and equity. The course explores both investing and financing decisions, focusing on their role in the creation of shareholder value.


The course covers four main parts:

  • The value of a firm: financial instruments, valuation concepts and decision rules.
  • Risk and return: theory, empirical evidence and applications to capital budgeting.
  • Financing decisions and market efficiency.
  • Payout policy, capital structure and valuation.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)
At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Recognize, explain, and reproduce core corporate finance tools and techniques, including applications in international contexts.
At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Apply and interpret core corporate finance tools and techniques.
  • Apply and evaluate capital budgeting methods.
  • Analyze and assess corporate financial decisions, such as capital structure, investment and corporate payout decisions.

Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Exercises (exercises, database, software etc.)
  • Case studies /Incidents (traditional, online)
  • Individual assignments
  • Group assignments
  • Exercises: students work on exercises in class and as take-homes.
  • Case studies: several case studies are assigned to give students a sense of solving allegedly real problems facing a firm.
  • Individual assignments: students work through ~10 individual graded assignments throughout the course, helping students to synthesize the material.
  • Group assignments: groups of students work on graded group assignments (cases).

Assessment methods
  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Written individual exam (traditional/online)
  •     x
  • Individual assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  • x    
  • Group assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  • x    

    Course assessment is identical for attending and non-attending students. Course assessment consists of:

    • [APRIL 2020 UPDATE] An exam grade (50-100% of the final grade), obtained from two compulsory components. For the May and June 2020 sessions, the first component is an online take-home assignment with a deadline of 15 May 2020, the second component is an online exam under official Bocconi exam rules. For the September 2020 session, both components will be combined. The weight of the exam grade depends on the quality of the other components and ranges from 50 to 100%. Repeating students are urgently requested to contact the Help&Contact procedure to obtain access to both compulsory exam grade components via Blackboard
    • Case studies (0-20% of the final grade): the case studies are worked on (and handed in) in groups, and are designed to give students a sense of solving allegedly real problems facing a firm. Students are able to re-shuffle groups between cases. Since there is one grade per group, students need to make sure that every group member pulls his or her weight. Students are assessed by the quality of their recommendations and analysis, the soundness of their logic, by their overall exposition (writing and style), and by their ability to effectively deal with ambiguity in a business setting. The weight is 20% if better than the final exam, and 0% otherwise.
    • Take-home quizzes (0-30% of the final grade): the take-home quizzes - of which there are roughly 10 - are individually assigned to students and contain numerical exercises and other question types and are aimed at helping students synthesize the course material and assessing their ability to apply analytical tools and their institutional knowledge. The weight is 30% if better than the final exam, and 0% otherwise.
    • Unused case, take-home and exam grade components have expiration conditions, the details are covered in class.

    Teaching materials
    • FAQ: an up-to-date guide to Frequently Asked Questions about the course, on Bboard.

    • Textbook: R.A. BREALEY, S.MYERS, F. ALLEN, Principles of Corporate Finance, McGraw Hill, 13th edition.

    • Course note packet: there is a course pack of class lecture notes on Bboard.

    • Cases: a set of cases we work through in class on Bboard.

    • Pre-readings: please see the course notes for some basic pre-reading to be done before the course formally begins on Bboard.

    Last change 28/05/2020 12:07