Money / Jobs
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Finance is a popular college major because it can lead to an exciting and lucrative career in a number of different types of jobs. Finance majors learn about banking, economics and financial markets, in addition to general business studies. They may also learn communications and psychology, since many careers in finance include a sales component, making these skills very important.
As a finance major, you can expect to take micro- and macro-economics, accounting, calculus and statistics. You may also take more specific courses in things like finance case studies, mergers and acquisitions, business valuation, econometrics, investing and international banking. Marketing and management courses may be required as well.
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Once you’ve got that finance degree under your belt, it’s time to go out and get a job. Here are some entry-level jobs that your finance degree may qualify you for.
Financial analysts help individuals and businesses make financial decisions in search of increased profits. To do this, they may gather and organize data, analyze historical results, generate financial models, and make recommendations and forecasts. Financial analysts may work in investment banks, financial planning firms, private equity firms or corporations.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the projected growth rate for financial analyst jobs is about average, projected to be 6% between 2020 and 2030. In May 2021, the median annual salary was $81,410 for a financial analyst, but entry-level positions would likely pay less.
Investment Banking Analyst
Investment banks help their commercial customers raise capital and assess investment opportunities. Investment banking analysts review and analyze data, generate reports, and make recommendations and presentations.
Investment banking analyst is an entry-level job that can lead to a career as an investment banker. Investment bankers work with corporations and organizations to help them raise capital, often with an initial public offering, which is when a company issues stock for the first time, or through mergers with or acquisitions of other companies. Investment bankers use their finance background to model complex financial scenarios to analyze investment opportunities for their clients, but they also need to have the ability to negotiate and close deals.
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The career outlook and median salary for an investment banking analyst is similar to that of a financial analyst, as the Bureau of Labor Statistics data does not distinguish between the two positions.
Accountant or Auditor
An accountant prepares financial records for individuals and businesses, and an auditor examines them. These can include income tax returns, balance sheets, income statements, cash flow statements, profit and loss statements and more.