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Financial analysts are responsible for researching and analyzing financial information to help companies make well informed decisions about their future investments. They are concerned with providing a comprehensive understanding of the financial status of a given investment opportunity. Data-gathering is one of the key duties of a financial analyst as they seek to influence decisions related to a particular venture. Savvy financial analysts do much more than simply assemble data, however. Frequently, they must ask difficult questions and continue to play a key role in securing and verifying information until the decision-making process is complete. The best financial analysts take a broad approach to gathering data, developing potential trends for the company and investigating other investment opportunities.
Education requirements for finance analysts include a Bachelor’s degree in a finance-related field. Many financial analysts also earn Master’s degrees in finance or business administration. They also take additional financial analyst courses, typically related to their specialty. Commonly, they become Certified Financial Analysts. Many employers will pay for employees’ certification and licensing program enrollment.
According to Indeed.com , the average salary for a financial analyst in Boston is $77,000. That’s 14 percent higher than the national average pay for a financial analyst. Similar jobs in Boston include corporate financial analysts who average $79,000; senior financial reporting analysts who earn $86,000; and financial system business analysts who top the ledger at $93,000.
Job opportunities are plentiful at a number of different types of employers, including banks, investment firms, mutual and pension funds, and insurance companies.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for financial analysts is great. Opportunities for financial analysts are expected to grow by 23 percent between 2010 and 2020, much faster than the average for all professions. That equates to 54,200 new positions. Competition remains fierce, however, especially for new analysts. Candidates with a master’s degree or certification have the best chance of landing these jobs.
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