Learn about financial markets and discover how to invest your money

Every day, billions of dollars are traded in financial markets across the world, with the total value of publicly listed companies running to trillions. We’ve come a long way since the creation of the world’s first stock exchange in Amsterdam in 1602.

In the 21st century world, the world’s financial health rides on what happens on the NYSE, NASDAQ, and London Stock Exchange, and others around the world. Those who remember what followed the financial crisis of 2007-2008 will understand just how profoundly we can be affected by what happens in financial markets.

Why financial markets are relevant

This world of finance and investment can seem distant and mysterious, the preserve of a small elite of finance professionals and speculators. The truth is, however, that finance does not begin and end in these public financial markets, so often glamourised or satirised in cinema, literature, and song.

They are connected in a delicate web that spreads down through the operations, ethics, and performances of real-world companies. Billions can be knocked off the value of a company by a single tweet, as Snapchat discovered in 2018 when Kylie Jenner tweeted negatively about a new redesign.

This web stretches all the way down to us as individuals. Things like pension funds and property values reflect how we make investment decisions in our own everyday lives, that play a role in determining our own futures as well as contributing the wider picture.

Investment and finance courses on FutureLearn

FutureLearn offers a range of finance courses from a selection of top universities around the world for those who would like to know more about investment.

These courses are offered from a variety of different perspectives, covering different topics to suit the needs of different learners.

These include courses considering the history and future of investing and financial markets. These finance courses explore diverse topics, from how we have viewed investment and stock markets historically through the prism of arts and literature, to how we can expect AI to change investment in the future, and the disruptive potential of fintech.

Other courses consider some of the practical and ethical considerations involved in investing, matters such as risk management and socially responsible investing.

Finally, there are introductory practical courses for those who would like to learn how to invest money in stocks, or those who would just like to better manage their own household finances to make their money go further, considering issues like pension funds and property values.

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