A widely quoted statistic is that 95% of all traders lose and are not profitable in the long run, however it is rare to see any evidence backing this up. A voracious appetite for data—A financial analyst digests and evaluates huge volumes of information to get an accurate read on business performance, including historic and current economic trends; national business news; company financial statements; and much more. Most financial analysts begin in junior positions, working for three to four years and building expertise in a particular field or industry.
Technical abilities—From spreadsheets, charts and graphs to complex financial modeling, a financial analyst must be adept with a host of software packages and relational databases. Portfolio manager—This senior position guides a team of analysts and works to select a mix of investments for a company portfolio. In addition to top-notch data analysis skills, the manager must be an expert communicator, explaining decision and strategies to company leaders. Financial analyst positions, including entry-level roles, require at least a bachelor’s degree.
Financial analysts gather and evaluate industry and economic fiscal data to predict investment performance. Their findings are used by businesses and individuals to make decisions about stocks, bonds and other financial stakes. They might work for financial institutions, corporations, insurance groups and securities companies. A bachelor’s degree in finance or another relevant field is the minimum qualification, but many financial analysts improve their employment prospects by earning master’s degrees.
While an undergraduate degree is sufficient for many positions, some require that financial analysts hold graduate degrees. The CFA Institute offers a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation to qualified professionals. Before being granted the CFA designation, financial analysts must have earned at least four years of professional investment experience. Financial analysts involved in regulated services, such as legal advising or selling stocks, bonds or insurance, might be required to obtain licensure. There are 1000’s of jobs in the Research Triangle that covers 8 counties as well.
They usually pursue securities licensure through the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, though different licenses might be required to perform other services. Rather than being a prerequisite, licensure is typically acquired during employment; financial analysts generally must be sponsored by their employers to become licensed. All the major investment banks and brokers in the City employ teams of analysts to provide those expert opinions.