Career of a CFA

Hopefuls on the lookout for careers in Finance, particularly financial investment and research  would be advised to earn a CFA charter. The CFA exam is highly regarded as the exam to do if a candidate is serious about a career in Finance. The career of a CFA is lucrative internationally. Employers across the world consider prospective candidates desirable if they are CFA charterholders. This is because the CFA program tests candidates on all key areas in investment finance and expect them to have relevant work experience. This means candidates have to work, learn and pass the CFA exam. The CFA charterholder is therefore seen as someone serious about a career in finance with sound fundamentals.

In data published by the CFA Institute their charter holders are listed as having roles in the following areas:

  • Equities
  • Fixed Income
  • Derivatives
  • Private Equities
  • Hedge Funds
  • Real Estate
  • Consultation

Some of the top employers of CFAs include :

  • Bank of America Merrill Lynch
  • Citigroup
  • Credit Suisse
  • Deutsche Bank
  • HSBC
  • JP Morgan Chase
  • Morgan Stanley Smith Barney
  • RBC
  • UBS
  • Wells Fargo

The CFA Institute has published self-reported figures of occupations held by CFA holders.The chart does not include retired and unemployed candidates.

Let us take a brief look at these roles.

Portfolio Manager: They are managers who are entrusted with investor funds, and who choose investments that can help them beat the market. They are assisted by analysts and researchers. They are offered investment choices from buy and sell side analysts in investment banks; they use their expertise to assess and make investment decisions for their portfolios. It is one of the most sought out role in Wall Street. This  requires data assessment skills and decision making skills that weigh risk vs. returns.

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