The National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) in the US has teamed with the University of Reading in the UK to launch the world's first degree on the regulation of financial markets, which has been developed to help fill an escalating demand for compliance staff.
As of October 2006, capital market professionals will be able to study for a master's degree in capital markets, regulation and compliance, which will be taught at the International Capital Market Association (ICMA) Centre in Reading.
NASD says recruitment in the compliance market is at an all time high as businesses face growing pressure to comply with European, US and international regulations. According to stats from recruitment firm Robert Walters the number of newly created compliance positions in the London market alone is expected to increase by 30% during January to December 2006, compared to the equivalent period in 2004.
Content for the new qualifications will be developed in consultation with investment banks including Deutsche Bank, DrKW, HSBC, JPMorgan, Merrill Lynch and UBS.
The degree will be launched alongside two other qualifications involving the NASD - a diploma and a certificate in capital markets, regulation and compliance. The diploma will be composed of short courses in London and Reading, while the certificate will be presented in various financial centres around the world, with the first course in the Middle East in the spring.
Robert Glauber, chairman and CEO of NASD, says: "The creation of this new set of professional qualifications, which will be recognised on an international level, will raise the profile of the compliance function even further and help create a respected career path for compliance professionals across the world.
"This can only serve to reinforce the integrity of global markets and increase investor confidence."