Course Summary
Credit Type:
2 weeks (33 hours)
Dates Offered:
Credit Recommendation & Competencies
Level Credits (SH) Subject
Lower-Division Baccalaureate 3 fundamentals of investment


The course objective is to provide an introduction to investments from the viewpoint of credit union finance employees and to provide math principles that underlie securities and skills necessary to set up the problems in a way that leads to an optimal solution.

Learning Outcomes:

  • develop fundamental knowledge of investment return and risk measures, including application and advantages/disadvantages of each, and the mechanics of the trade
  • discover the basics in the development of investment strategy, primary security types that are permissible for credit union investors, including risk/return characteristics of each, how to analyze and document, their role in the portfolio, and portfolio reporting, monitoring and rebalancing
  • examine the other side of the broker/dealer arrangement: what's in it for them, how they operate, and how to deal with them
  • understand the role of the board of directors from a best practices perspective: their responsibilities and their limitations
  • compose objective answers to 5 critical due diligence questions (why did you buy this bond? why didn't you buy something else? why this sector? why this percentage in this sector? what process did you go through to gain assurance that this was the best course of action for your institution?)
  • understand the investment portfolio management discipline as a process, not simply a function of purchasing and selling investments

General Topics:

  • Basic investment structures, cash flows, and financial characteristics
  • MBS and CMO basics, structures, cash flows, and key financial characteristics
  • Developing risk/return requirements for the investment portfolio
  • Corporate governance - customizing portfolio and instrument level constraints
  • Is your auto lending program delivering or hijacking member value
  • Portfolio management
  • Accounting, monitoring, and reporting to board and ALCO
  • Managing broker relationships and counterparty exposure
  • The economic cycle and a case study in security selection
  • A framework for fixed-income decision making
  • Total return scenario analysis - applied to bullet and callable securities
  • Case study: risk/reward decision-making framework
  • Evaluating live bullet, callable and step-up offerings
  • Workshop: portfolio management case study
  • Workshop: security level risk/reward decision making
Instruction & Assessment

Instructional Strategies:

  • Audio Visual Materials
  • Case Studies
  • Classroom Exercise
  • Coaching/Mentoring
  • Discussion
  • Games/Competition
  • Lectures
  • Practical Exercises

Methods of Assessment:

  • Examinations

Minimum Passing Score:

Supplemental Materials