Job Profile: Financial Analyst Careers

Financial analysts are highly-skilled advisors who help companies and individuals make sound investment decisions. They usually specialize in a certain area of the investment process, either focusing on recommendations concerning the selling of stocks or adding options to an investment portfolio. Additionally, financial analysts make careful assessments of market performance and predictions of market strength. Their role is defined by fast-paced, sometimes high-risk, decision making.

A career as a financial analyst is a good fit for someone with the ability to think analytically and execute good judgment in high-pressure situations. Because financial analysts are required to explain their investment recommendations to clients who may not be as financially savvy, excellent communication skills are also very important.

Understanding current and historical financial trends is necessary for a successful career in finance, so analysts undergo a rigorous certification process to ensure that their knowledge is up-to-date and relevant. Taking the Series 7 and Series 63 exams or participating in the CFA Institute’s certification programs is often required to demonstrate that a financial analyst is prepared to take on the responsibility of making important investment decisions.

Types of Financial Analyst
There are four common types of financial analysts: fund managers, portfolio managers, risk analysts, and ratings analysts. Fund managers work strictly with the investment strategies of hedge funds, trust funds, mutual funds, and pensions, while portfolio managers work with a combination of products and industries. Risk analysts work to prevent economic losses by assessing and minimizing a client’s exposure to risky investments. Ratings analysts analyze the financial capabilities of investors and investments to evaluate how companies manage debt and repayments.

Professional Outlook
While the career preparation is extensive, the rewards of the position can be great. The median salary for a financial analyst was $74, 350 in 2010. And with the financial industry expecting above average growth in the coming years, choosing a career in finance can be a great way to remain competitive in any job market. In addition, starting out as a financial analyst can eventually lead to some of the highest paying jobs in the financial industry. For example, chief financial officers and managers can expect to make upwards of $300,000 per year on average.

Pursuing a Career as a Financial Analyst
It is widely known that financial analysts work in a very demanding and highly-competitive industry. Many employers seek job candidates with a combination of education and experience, but it can be difficult to receive an education while actively employed. Obtaining an online MBA gives potential financial analysts the flexibility to work, while attending classes at their convenience. Lynn University offers an online MBA program that specializes in financial valuation and investment management. Not only does the coursework allow students the ability to work, the program is affordable and taught by industry experts. Lynn University’s asynchronous curriculum gives students the freedom to learn in a way best suited for them, a pathway to independent education that will prepare future financial analysts for the aggressive finance world.

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