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Risk managers must be familiar with the workings of financial markets. They must understand the capabilities provided by the financial sector to mitigate risk. They must also understand the inherent risks facing the financial sector. To do both they must have a good understanding of how financial markets and institutions work.

Well functioning markets are constantly changing, so too with financial markets. It was not long ago that most financial markets were domestic in scope and limited in institutional variety. Today financial markets are global in nature, with open foreign exchange markets and a growing variety of financial institutions and instruments. These changes have increased the importance of readily available and accurate information and of a well designed regulatory framework. Moreover, with global financial markets being harsh in response to poorly managed economies, national, regional and international economic management has taken on increased importance. This course, therefore, will examine financial markets in terms of the tools it provides to the risk manager as well as looking at the risks, especially those of a systemic nature that are often created and propagated by financial markets.

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