Entry Level Finance Jobs in Denver

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jjohnsonCO in Colorado Springs, Colorado

69 months ago

It's been my experience that you need 2 things to get a job as a financial analyst:

1. A BA/BS in Accounting, Finance, or Business Administration
2. Two years of experience as a Financial Analyst

That's why I pretty much gave up on it for now. I have a BA in political science but found finance more interesting, so I wanted to career change over to it. I was lucky enough to get a temp assignment that was a financial analyst job, but now I only have 6 months experience, I still need another year and a half.

I'm also going for my MBA, which will be cheaper (and have a better payoff in the long run) than going for another Bachelors, but again, the MBA isn't worth anything without the experience.

So if you have the couple of years experience and the right kind of degree, it shouldn't be too hard to find an FA job (I see them on Craigslist all the time). Also, consider other job titles that do the same thing, like Risk Analyst. I interviewed with Xcel for a Risk Analyst position, and of course, they took someone with a business degree.

So to sum up, cover those two bases I mentioned and you should be fine. If you need the experience, well, I feel ya man, cuz that's where I am. My only other option is to get some crappy night job so I can "intern" with someone during the day for cheap or free just to get the experience. It would be nice if there were PM finance jobs, but there really aren't.

Personally, I get frustrated looking for finance jobs and getting hit up by insurance sales companies. Selling insurance policies IS NOT finance! But they seem to think it is... I'm half tempted to just go work for Primerica or some other turn-and-burn just long enough to get my certifications and then move on to something less soul draining.

Anyway, good luck man! I'm in Englewood (not DTC) too for now until I move down to CoS.

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jjohnsonCO in Colorado Springs, Colorado

69 months ago

How long did you work for Chase? My strongest lead right now is as a Personal Banker for a national bank. Yeah, it's all sales, but I am thinking Finance is a club and you have to pay your dues. So if I trudge through the sales "finance" for a few years, that should prove I have the fortitude to put up with the BS and they'll let me have a analysis job, especially once I finish an MBA/MS Finance within the next two years.

But on the other hand, I worry if I work two years for a bank if that will be the "wrong" experience. But maybe by then the MBA/MS will make up for that lack. Above all, I'm hoping if I do my two years in financial services/sales that I'll never have to do them again.

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Chris in Los Angeles, California

68 months ago

Im in a similar situation. I'm 3 years out of school and have a BA in Finance. I've been in insurance the last 2 years and want to change into the (broad) field of finance. Every type of analyst position requires experience, even the "entry level" ones. So I've been kinda stuck too. ..

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Ben in Irvine, California

68 months ago

Looks like a lot of people are all in the same position, I am 2 years out of school and have been in insurance and sales the last 2 years. I have a BA in Computer Engineering, which is basically an analyst style major, but have yet to find any analyst positions open that are willing to train. How do I contact some of you guys? I guess we are all in the same boat...

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James in Colorado Springs, Colorado

68 months ago

Well, about the only thing I can think of at this point is take the first level of the CFA, pass it, and network your butt off with people who work with analysts.

At this point, with it being pretty much impossible to get into the field without a BS in Finance and without the stars in the proper alignment, I am just going to go the accounting route instead, get my CPA, CMA, CTP, and then go for a CFA as well, then I can work on being a Controller or CFO one day.

I realized aiming for analyst was aiming too low and too narrow. Accounting is a lot broader and plenty of jobs once you have the education behind you.

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Ben in Agoura Hills, California

68 months ago

James,

Please email me at benbjlin@gmail.com I would like to talk to you further, perhaps we can help each other in deciding what to do. I talked a few VC firms in Orange County, they all have told me that becoming an analyst is very difficult right now because no one is hiring unexperienced candidates.

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jjohnsonCO in Colorado Springs, Colorado

68 months ago

Well the thing is, I'm not trying to get into a Wall Street company or anything. Not trying to get on with a hedge fund or VC firms. Sure it'd be nice, but I didn't graduate from Wharton or get a business degree. My degree is an political science, about the most useless degree you can have next to philosophy or communication. So I'm going back for an MBA and an MS in Finance. I generally do good with studying and passing tests, so I figured if I studied really hard, I might be able to pass at least the first level and convince someone to bring me in as a corporate financial analyst. That's really all I'm looking for, just a simple number cruncher, not looking for a six figure New York Fortune 50 firm.

Right now I'm am working as a direct bill clerk for Wells Fargo through Robert Half, so somewhat related to accounting, but not quite AR. It's somewhere between AR and data entry.

I may still go for a CFA down the road, but right now, I am aiming for the Certified Management Accountant designation instead so maybe I can at least jump start my career into a real accounting job. I'm hoping that someone without a degree in business but who passed the CMA exam would be worth hiring.

I'm aiming for that mainly because you don't need the experience to take the test, but you do need the experience to gain the designation, so I'm hoping I can sort of guilt an employer into letting me get some accounting management experience. I can do the same with the CFA, but it is also much more expensive in terms of time and money.

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Collin in Marietta, Georgia

68 months ago

Weird I came across this webpage while looking for an Analyst job, and it appears I am most definitely not alone... I can't even count the amount of insurance sales recruiters who have called me in the last month, and I am getting pretty sick of explaining how I am not interested and it isn't the kind of experience I need.
Anyways good luck to all of you!

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Matthew D. in Springfield, Oregon

68 months ago

haha...in the same boat. I do have some project management experience, but it's all operational and i'm looking for the finance-intensive experience. I like the idea of doing valuation and FSA. That's really the main experience I want. I'm thinking about going to work for a big company that does alot of deals and try to get myself into that analytical role. Deal experience (like M&A) is really what I'm after. Too bad the credit markets are in shambles...

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jjohnsonCO in Colorado Springs, Colorado

68 months ago

The only other thing I can recommend to everyone if you have the time is to do informational interviews with the managers or finance departments. Don't go in there like you want a job right then, but just ask them about how you get into the field and what sort of experience you can try to get if you can't get the direct FA experience.

Like in my case, on one of my temp jobs, I sat down with the finance manager and asked him how he went about getting the experience or got into the field. He said he started in accounting for a few years and then jumped over into finance. I asked the manager of the current temp job something similar, and she said that people that start in accounting and then go into finance tend to have an easier time on the job and getting into finance than vice versa.

But another possible positive outcome of an informational interview is that they might keep you in mind if there are any finance openings in the future. Just be sure to bring a resume with you that's geared towards finance, just in case he/she asks to see it. Otherwise, describe your background in general and specifically highlight the skills you have that might best translate to a finance analyst job.

For my part, I'm happy where I am for now, because I think that, while it pays less than an FA job, accounting is a wide field and I think has greater job security in the long run. So maybe the advice to go accounting THEN finance is the best advice so that you have something to fall back on in case of hard economic times.

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MTavera in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

67 months ago

I just finished reading an article written by a Yale graduate on how to prepare for a career as a financial analyst. The author emphasizes that if you do not have a MBA or a degree in Economy, which most companies require when hiring a FA plu two years of experience, then get your series 7 and 63, after you pass those, she recommends to get an entry level position and after you obtain some experience, go for the CFA, but remember that . What do you guys think? Have you heard of this suggestion before? I don't usually blog on indeed. If you have an answer or suggestions on my comment please email me at mtavera07@yahoo.com

Good luck everyone!!!

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Chris K in Gainesville, Florida

66 months ago

MTavera in Fort Lauderdale, Florida said: I just finished reading an article written by a Yale graduate on how to prepare for a career as a financial analyst. The author emphasizes that if you do not have a MBA or a degree in Economy, which most companies require when hiring a FA plu two years of experience, then get your series 7 and 63, after you pass those, she recommends to get an entry level position and after you obtain some experience, go for the CFA, but remember that . What do you guys think? Have you heard of this suggestion before? I don't usually blog on indeed. If you have an answer or suggestions on my comment please email me at mtavera07@yahoo.com

Good luck everyone!!!

Well, ladies and gentlemen let paint this picture for you. I served in the military, hold a B.S. in Finance, and finished my MBA last year. The only people that I know that have actually made it into financial analyst positions are either ivy leaguers or simpley people with really good or fortunate connections. The ivy leaguers well let's just thank mom and dad for the money and connections even though I'm absolutely not smarter than anyone else. As for the people that have really good connections, thank you God.

All I know is I paid for my own education and have lived in my car three times even during finals finishing my MBA. I promise you that no Wharton graduate knows finance any better than me becuase the formula for NPV is the same whether you went to Wharton, any other school, or read on the Internet.

This industry is a classic case of the good old boy system. If you weren't lucky enough to pursue an FA position during the Tech and economic boom of the late 90s than you missed your chance.I think it's BS and unfortunate for those that sacrificed like I did for nothing.

Here's the funny part. There's a lot of companys out there suffering right now and not just because of global economic conditions but because they have staffed themselves...

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Chris K in Gainesville, Florida

66 months ago

MTavera in Fort Lauderdale, Florida said: I just finished reading an article written by a Yale graduate on how to prepare for a career as a financial analyst. The author emphasizes that if you do not have a MBA or a degree in Economy, which most companies require when hiring a FA plu two years of experience, then get your series 7 and 63, after you pass those, she recommends to get an entry level position and after you obtain some experience, go for the CFA, but remember that . What do you guys think? Have you heard of this suggestion before? I don't usually blog on indeed. If you have an answer or suggestions on my comment please email me at mtavera07@yahoo.com

Good luck everyone!!!

Good thought but you can't pursue a series 7 without working for a firm that is NASD affiliated (you can't get it on your own). As for pursuing a CFA. Be careful of paying for degree, crtifications, or designations that are useless unless actually hired by a company. Otherwise it's money out the window and as someone else said on this blog you can't actually get the designation without experience in the industry. No matter what you do you're still trying to break into the good old boy system.

As for the Yale guy, I hate getting advice from people that have everything handed to them so be weary of advice from people with advantage and be careful of wasting money. Debt is a terrible thing right now.

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James in Colorado Springs, Colorado

66 months ago

While I agree with Chris. I think most of us aren't talking about the Wall Street Analysts (which are only open to Ivy League graduates). We're more talking about the junior staffer working in the finance department at any large local company. We mere mortals have a better shot at those types of jobs, but the fact remains that it seems every one of those jobs already wants you to have the experience.

From everyone I've talked to in the last six months, it seems the way I am going now is the best way to go. Start with accounting, learn everything you can about accounting (Accounts Payable/Receivable, General Ledger, etc) and get your experience there. Then with that background, you stand a better chance of crossing over to finance (and on top of that, you'll better understand the money flow of the company).

So if anyone on here who graduated from a local public institution or even a smaller private one thinks they're going to be a Wall Street analyst, well, good luck to you, but your chances are better of winning the presidency (another job also only open to Ivy League graduates). But again, I think most of us on here are focused on getting in as a junior staffer of a local company, not Wall Street.

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Johnny D in Aliso Viejo, California

66 months ago

I agree with James. I have personally only looked at financial analyst jobs outside of Wall Street. But it's still difficult to get the start. I agree with Chris K because I have seen the exact same thing. It has definitely become today's good old boy system. Time to start employing the "start in the mail room" type of philosophy or simply move on to a different career path.

The accounting thing is a great idea. I have thought of that myself except I will not pay for anymore education so I have to try to find an accounting job that will hire me with an education in finace. The link their is definietly learning the cash flow. Then yo can get into registrating and reporting which to me is not accounting and is not financial analysis. It is accounting analysis which puts you on the accounting/finance fence. I don't know if this gets you into corporate finance to perform analysis and modeling.

Is that how it works???? Is there another way to do it????

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Alex C in Miami, Florida

66 months ago

It appears that I've wondered into heaven for people who have sales experience but want to be a Financial Analyst. I am one of you. What I am doing is going back to school for the MBA. I will also intern for a company, hedge funds or any company that will let you work as an analyst for free and I will support myself as a bartender at night. Once I have the MBA and some experince, I will go back to Robert Half or Stephen James. It is important that you guy know that you have to know how to do Financial modeling, Pivot tables, and forcasting.

I recommend buying this book FINANCIAL MODELING
3rd Edition by Simon Benninga

After reading the book, put on your resume that you know how to do Financial modeling and forecasting on excel.(The book teaches you)

If anyone has any suggestions outside of this, email me. Acharl01@yahoo.com. Maybe their is a simpler way.

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Marie - FA in Duncan, South Carolina

66 months ago

I am a financial analyst for a large manufacturing company, so I thought I'd explain how I got here. I graduated with a bachelor's degree in International Business in 2006, then accepted an accounting position with a small company. In this position I had the opportunity to get involved in more than just basic accounting...such as budgeting, cost accounting, and analysis. I worked there two years, and got involved in the company as much as I could (easier to do when its a small company).

Then about six months ago, I put my resume on Monster. I received a call from a recruiter about a financial analyst position in a manufacturing plant for a large global company. They interviewed me for the job and here I am. So basically I agree with James- Start in accounting. It is the foundation for everything in business. There are accounting "technician" jobs in larger companies. They may not sound spectacular but these jobs will get you in the door and you can move up from there. MBA's are nice, but if you don't have experience an MBA isn't worth having.

Most companies are in a hiring freeze at the moment, but come January finance jobs should look more abundant. Thank you Alex for the recommendation on financial modeling...that's how I came across this webpage actually. I was looking for a good resource for advanced financial charting. You are exactly right that this is a skill much needed in finance (fortunately one that can be self-taught).

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MAF in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

65 months ago

You all make some good points. My situation is a little different. I was working in the Healthcare field as a medical assistant and decided to go back to school to obtain my bachelors degree. I wanted to work with doctors since I knew that I would never become a doctor or nurse. Well, my school offered a degree completion program for medical assistant and other healthcare workers looking to obtain their degrees. I graduated in 2005 with a Bachelors degree in Health Science. What I didn't realize was that I had just put myself in a category of overqualified healthcare workers. Now, I was a medical assistant with a Bachelors degree applying for position which normally only people with high school diplomas apply for. I was being told that it didn't make sense to hire me when they could hire someone with less education and pay them less.

So, I moved on and started working in the retail marketing industry. However, I knew in order to move up, I need experience and a business education which I lacked with my Bachelors degree. However, I never found it difficult to land entry level jobs as a merchandiser or brand representative. The jobs were exciting but the money was poor. I would need to work 4 of these jobs to make a full time salary. Time to head back to school.

This time, I decided to major in something that I knew would make me more marketable to companies. I decided to major in Accounting and Finance. So now, I'm a graduate student working on completing my master's degree in Accounting and Finance. The best part about this degree is that its really a double major. I'll have every class that an undergraduate accounting student has and I'll also have every class that an undergraduate finance student has.

My plans are to continue working in retail marketing up to the point where I can start as a Jr. Staff Accountant. I will then move into Staff Accountant position after about 3 years experience. I may even take my CPA exam. To be continued.

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MAF in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

65 months ago

Once I 5 years experience as a Staff Accountant, I will then transition over into a Finance position. I don't think that my plan is flawed in anyway and can be realized over a period of time.

My dream job is to become a Merchandise Planner. But just like the Financial Analyst position, you have to have experience before they will even look at you. I have the retail experience. I lack the financial experience.

Well that's my plan.

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sandyv63 in Naples, Florida

65 months ago

Wow am I happy I found this forum. I am in a similar situation. I have a BS in Management and an MBA in Finance. I have 2+ years of experience as a Budget Specialist and a couple of years experience as a Returns Analyst (magazine distribution company.) Recruiters tell me a Financial Analyst position would be the next logical step. Someone please tell that to the hiring managers. I am not looking to go to Wall Street or join a company that only hires Ivy League grads. All employers seem to want modeling skills so thank you Alex C. for suggesting a book. One question, how difficult is it to self-learn financial modeling? I pretty much have the rest of the skills they want; pivot tables, v-lookups, the usual formulas, but the lack of modeling skills is killing me.

My current job is more accounting than anything else but I am still not getting anywhere. I really don't want to pursue an accounting type job since I am already so bored with budgeting. I seem to be stuck in the same boat with most of you. Maybe we can make it change direction since there are so many of us, hehehe.

I currently live in South Florida and I've been trying to get a job across the country in Orange County, CA for almost 2 years. Ben in Irvine and Ben in Agoura Hills make me even less optimistic about my chances. I currently work in public education so I am even considering a job with the public school system in OC but financial jobs there are far and few in between. I've worked with almost every employment agency in OC and they don't seem to be worth much. If only they'd be honest and stop telling me my chances of getting a job through them is good. Once I leave their office, they never call and they never respond to my calls/emails. What a waste of time.

I would love to find a decent company in OC that offers a thorough training program for anything else than sales positions. I also don't want to sell insurance or financial services, and I don't want to be a claims adjuster either.

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mtavera in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

65 months ago

I live in South Florida too, in Fort Lauderdale, and I've been trying to get an entry level accounting position for almost a year. I have a degree in Finance, but less than a year in accounting experience. I have been applying to positions at Accountemps website, and through other employment agencies. Since you already work in an accounting position in South Florida, do you have any suggestions? I truly appreciate it.

Good luck in your search.

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sandyv63 in Naples, Florida

65 months ago

I had no problem getting work at the local public school system in Collier. I checked the websites for Broward and there are no financial jobs available. Dade has nothing either. However, if you are willing to drive to Palm Beach, there are some Treasurer jobs and Accounting Tech jobs. The Accounting job requires 3 years of experience, but trust me, they aren't all that strict about having all those years. You have a degree which goes a long way in the public school system. The good news is that there are multiple open positions so if you interview well, you'll stand a good chance. Here is the website:

erp.palmbeach.k12.fl.us/jobs2.html

If the direct link doesn't work, try this:

www.palmbeach.k12.fl.us/JOBS/Apply/index.html

Hope this helps!

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mtavera in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

65 months ago

This is very helpful thank you very much. I will check it out right now.

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James in Colorado Springs, Colorado

64 months ago

Without work experience, you're pretty much on your own. Find a cheap place to live and try to find an internship or something. No one will hire you as an FA, at least not here in the US, without at least 2 years of experience in the job already. Good luck though.

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jon in Hialeah, Florida

64 months ago

[what i di was , iwent to robert half and told them that i was interested in getting my foot in the door , i started as ar coordinator and , was given the permananet position, waited a year so i could mive up the ladder, and now im a staff accountant.

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Tianja in Smyrna, Georgia

64 months ago

Wow,
I thought I was alone but after reading these very interesting replies I see that I am not. Well I can give you guys my experience and maybe it will put things into perspective. I graduated with a bachelor's degree in Finance in 2003 and since then have been a personal at two of the (former) larges banks in the country. I have a series 6 and 63 license as well as an insurance license. After getting laid off from my lucrative banking job I decided to continue up the ladder to a financial analyst position because surely I've paid my dues. Well I landed an interview at Coca Cola for an anlyst job and what I was told by the hiring manager is that my experience is with "personal financial analyst" which is different than the financial analyst position which is on a corporate leve. hmmmmmm so how do u get a financial analyst position? I'm with you guys ya gotta know someone because all the licenses and degrees obviously dont do much. Another problem is that once you start sales its almost like you are stuck there. They dont want to move u regardless of if its financial services such as in the banks or just sales at best buy. Its crazy. Im currently seeking my MBA, not sure if thats gonna help but, what can we do? I guess we just gotta keep trying. Keep me posted if anyone comes up with anything.

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will in Prospect Heights, Illinois

63 months ago

This forum is a bit discouraging, but they say anything worth doing is going to be difficult.

I have a BA in Political Science (from a top-ten public university, but Political Science nonetheless) and am hoping to begin a career in finance. I'm enrolled in a CFP program at Northwestern and a Financial Decision Making program at U of Chicago, and I'm unsure if either of these programs are going to help me in the long run. I'm also wondering if I should be devoting my time and resources to the CFA exams or Series 63, or something...?? What types of entry-level jobs can help get me on track to becoming a financial analyst? Anyone have any advice on how someone in my situation can break into the field??

Thanks

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david hugle in Oakland, California

63 months ago

This is really a good time to invest your time in building a skill set. Be willing to accept meager or non-existant salaries (as in an internship with a hedge fund or money manger). Be persistant!

If you go to ezinearticles and search for hedge fund jobs you can find some good info tricks, and tools for standing out among all the competitition.

Good Luck.

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adrsma1 in Suwanee, Georgia

61 months ago

Tianja in Smyrna, Georgia said: Wow,
I thought I was alone but after reading these very interesting replies I see that I am not. Well I can give you guys my experience and maybe it will put things into perspective. I graduated with a bachelor's degree in Finance in 2003 and since then have been a personal at two of the (former) larges banks in the country. I have a series 6 and 63 license as well as an insurance license. After getting laid off from my lucrative banking job I decided to continue up the ladder to a financial analyst position because surely I've paid my dues. Well I landed an interview at Coca Cola for an anlyst job and what I was told by the hiring manager is that my experience is with "personal financial analyst" which is different than the financial analyst position which is on a corporate leve. hmmmmmm so how do u get a financial analyst position? I'm with you guys ya gotta know someone because all the licenses and degrees obviously dont do much. Another problem is that once you start sales its almost like you are stuck there. They dont want to move u regardless of if its financial services such as in the banks or just sales at best buy. Its crazy. Im currently seeking my MBA, not sure if thats gonna help but, what can we do? I guess we just gotta keep trying. Keep me posted if anyone comes up with anything.

What does your resume look like? Obviously you have done something right in order to land an interview.

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justinc in Clackamas, Oregon

60 months ago

I have pretty much the same story as everyone else so I won't bore you with the details. Some advice based on my personal experience: I was selling financial management software right out of school and decided to persue the CMA credential. It is not as well known as a CPA but in my biased opinion it more valuable.It was also a lot cheaper than an MBA. After passing the first 2 exams I was able to get a finance technician position in a local government organization. That role has grown and I am now holding the title of financial analyst even though I really do more accounting functions. I plan to stay here until the economy improves and long enough to get the work experience to fullfill my CMA credentials. Hopefully then I can move back to the private sector doing strictly analystical work. Governments are in need of finance and accounting staff and they typically have entry level positions that pay pretty well and are great learning experiences. Hope this was helpful. Good Luck All!

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frank in Los Angeles, California

53 months ago

I enjoyed reading your commentaries, and found them very helpfull. I recently graduated with a BA in Econ through the Business department at a State University. I was going to study for the CFA, but reconsidered, since it may be too risky for me. As an older individual I am more concerned about job security.
I feel that trying to break in as an analyst may be difficult.
So what I'm going to do is I plan to take some accounting courses. This may be of help. As for going for an MBA, I find that climbing the corporate ladder only to get laid off without any real job skills to be a dangerous trail for me. I will also sharpen my computer skills. I am not a good salesman so being a CFP is not a good route either.
Happy Holidays.

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JasonTR in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

52 months ago

My experience in becoming a financial analyst

I have a BS degree in finance and figured i would get an analyst job right out of college somewhere which did not happen

i went on numerous interviews and most were looking for 2 yrs experience as an analyst with either a finance degree or accounting degree but were more flexible if you had an accounting degree it seemed

i took a job as a financial advisor thinking thatd be good experience for an analyst job and though there are aspects of a financial advisors job that could relate to an analysts job they are totally different and found that out on my 2nd go around of interviews

i worked as an advisor for 2 yrs and hated almost every day of it except for my few big sales...its a great job if you stick it out and have good connections

i started looking for jobs again as a financial analyst and found most ppl said the experience i had did not qualify me for an analyst position, so i was stuck with well how do i get analyst experience if nobody will give me any

i started looking for sales support/analyst positions and found numerous positions in that field which i interviewed for and was qualified for. that got me involved with creating and running reports more and utilizing data warehouses to pull data and creating forecasts and such along with my sales background

after 6 months of that job i was able to land a financial analyst job because i was able to talk about my experience which included actually running reports rather than just selling insurance, investments, and talking about mutual funds/stocks but not really doing any actual analyzing myself

so it is a hard path to follow to get an analyst job, but from my experience the best way to do it is either have an accounting degree or an mba/masters degree along with a years experience in some sort of field where you actually analyze data and run reports

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JasonTR in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

52 months ago

i had all of the licenses as well

series 7, 66, and life and health and that didnt qualify me to be a financial analyst

it just qualified me to sell insurance products and investments so those licenses while good do not mean anything to be an analyst

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Skho in San Francisco, California

48 months ago

Like most of you I'm on the same boat...

I graduated from UCLA in 08 with a degree in Psych and International Studies. I realized I wanted to sink deep into finance and business instead of psych during the last year of college.

With no background in finance, I took a few accounting classes at a community college. I managed to score a non-paid Finance and Operations internship at a consumer products start-up. I got a lot of exposure in basic accounting. Which also helped me score a position as a bookkeeper through Robert and Half. But I'm ready to take the next steps and start doing the analytical side of things.

I have also considered CFA or MBA, but both of those require substantial experience to be considered. Does anyone have a similar experience? if so...care to shred some light on this issue?

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Neil Venters in New York

48 months ago

You definitelly do not need experience to start taking CFA exams. You do need experience to get the charterholder after you have passed all 3 levels, but even passing the first exam will give you a lot of credibility.

My blog discusses the latest trends in banking jobs:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=zp6x6RzrR08

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Josh in Eugene, Oregon

47 months ago

My experience is that a Series 6/7 & 63 are NASD licenses to offer securities for sale. They are not based around any sort of analysis or quant functions. The CFA is directly related to analysis. It's basically an inclusive test of what you learn in undergrad finance for the CFA level 1. I see no reason why you would want a Series 7 license to get into financial analysis. Also, when you leave your company and are no longer sponsored for your series, the licenses is parked and disappears after 2 years.

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Jeff in Portland, Oregon

45 months ago

The job market is just terrible for people who don't have experience. Not just in finance, but in everything, it seems like people don't want to consider someone for a job unless they already have that same job somewhere else. Obviously new people have to come from somewhere. It's like employers don't realize that there are smart people out there who can do a job if you train them, so they just let a job posting sit there for months because, supposedly, no one who can do the job has even applied.

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no ones business in Palmetto, Florida

45 months ago

If I were you I would obtain another bachelor's degree in Finance- i used to live in Denver and I worked for a financial services company-the head of HR told me-they don't even consider MBA's without an undergrad in Finance-you are wasting your money

2 things to get a job as a financial analyst:

1. A BA/BS in Accounting, Finance, or Business Administration
2. Two years of experience as a Financial Analyst

That's why I pretty much gave up on it for now. I have a BA in political science but found finance more interesting, so I wanted to career change over to it. I was lucky enough to get a temp assignment that was a financial analyst job, but now I only have 6 months experience, I still need another year and a half.

I'm also going for my MBA, which will be cheaper (and have a better payoff in the long run) than going for another Bachelors, but again, the MBA isn't worth anything without the experience.

Anyway, good luck man! I'm in Englewood (not DTC) too for now until I move down to CoS.

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k3nny in Elmhurst, New York

45 months ago

I'm going to graduate majoring finance in the fall and currently debating if i should bite the bullet and stay an extra year to double in accounting. I found that its nearly impossible to break-into the field of FA without being really well connected or graduate from a ivy-league school.

I decided in the beginning of this summer that I will take the CFA exam part 1 and learn financial modeling as well as other FA skills during my last semister in school while studying for the CFA.

Does anyone graduated and pass part 1 of the CFa exam and got a job as a entry lvl FA?

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jcltw26 in Beaverton, Oregon

45 months ago

There are two basic routes you can take as a Financial Analyst; Corporate and Financial Service/Banking? If your goal is to work in the Financial Services & Banking Industry I would say persue the CFA. If you want to work on the corporate side I would recommend double majoring in accounting. You could also persue a Certified Managment Accountant designation without having to get the accounting degree. (www.imanet.org). I am a CMA with a BS in Finance and I am a Financial Analyst for a Utility. I had to pay my dues for a couple years working in lower accounting clerk type jobs, but as soon as I completed my CMA I had 5 job offers to choose from. You really can't go wrong with getting any professional certification CPA, CFA, CMA etc. Just remember that these will only get you in the door, it is up to you to sell your future employer on how your certification will benefit them. Good luck!

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k3nny in Elmhurst, New York

45 months ago

jcltw26 in Beaverton, Oregon said: There are two basic routes you can take as a Financial Analyst; Corporate and Financial Service/Banking? If your goal is to work in the Financial Services & Banking Industry I would say persue the CFA. If you want to work on the corporate side I would recommend double majoring in accounting. You could also persue a Certified Managment Accountant designation without having to get the accounting degree. ( www.imanet.org ). I am a CMA with a BS in Finance and I am a Financial Analyst for a Utility. I had to pay my dues for a couple years working in lower accounting clerk type jobs, but as soon as I completed my CMA I had 5 job offers to choose from. You really can't go wrong with getting any professional certification CPA, CFA, CMA etc. Just remember that these will only get you in the door, it is up to you to sell your future employer on how your certification will benefit them. Good luck!

thank you

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moo in Germantown, Maryland

45 months ago

To all of you who graduated with a ba/bs in Finance are there any other majors you would've rather picked now that you're looking back on the process? I'm currently in my second year of Community College and am following courses that are associated with a Finance major, however, all these posts make me question whether Finance would be a good choice.

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k3nny in Elmhurst, New York

45 months ago

I really wish i sticked with accounting because when you graduate you literally use little to any financial- "knowledge" you get from college. Accounting degree also is VERY flexible and could go into any business- related field.

Since the best way possible to enter the finance analyst field is through accounting experience i've been trying to look for clerk jobs however even clerk positions have a required 2-3 years of accounting experience. any advice ?

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chuckie90 in Pompano Beach, Florida

45 months ago

I can see everybody is in the same situation. I am about to finish my AA at a community college, thinking about going into finances. As I can see I think I should just go for the accounting major like kenny says, it is more flexible. A lot of people from South Florida over here. So in summary, what is it that a guy like me is supposed to do? finish the next two years in accounting, get a small job as an accounting clerk and work my way up until someone hires me as a financial analyst? what about right now? what can I do to get an advantage? I am a manager of a small contractor company and I don't know if I'm screwing up my career by having this kind of job. I do payrolls, invoices and oversee 18 employees. I would like to know something more specific about what the guys hiring want from you...Thanks to all of these helpful comments, we all can get a little bit of advice.

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mag07k in Jersey City, New Jersey

45 months ago

I have a B.S in Economics and obtained a position as a Hedge Fund Accountant. Thought about the CFA route, but I am self-taught in every respect and am confident that if I apply for an internal analyst or trader position I can explain why I am more qualified than the MBA grad that feels he/she is entitled to the position by mere default. I find this credentialism thing to be extremely annoying. I have a Series 7 and it's about to expire, whatever. It's knowledge and if you can prove it; whether conventionally or unconventionally, more power to you!

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jennifer in Fort Worth, Texas

44 months ago

It's interesting that everybody says an MBA + 2 year experiences will get you in a FA. But recently I found most FA jobs, expecially those in large corporation, requires at least 5 years experiences in financial analysis/planning/forecasting. Should we be intimidated by this unrealistic requirement and turn back to those entry level work, or just go ahead to apply it anyway, hoping that it's just the companies try to bully the job hunters or take the advantage of the current poor employment situation?

Thanks.

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Youngin in East Hartford, Connecticut

41 months ago

Hey all, sorry to hear about everyone's fruitless job searches. Not sure if the times have changed, but this is the route i took.

Graduated BS Finance at the University of Connecticut in 2008
During last two years of school, worked as an intern/co op at United Technologies (UTX).
After graduating, i got accepted into their financial leadership program, a two year rotational program for graduates with finance backgrounds or related fields.
Graduated recently from the program and now work as a Program Financial Control Analyst for one of UTC's business units. Not a dream job, but great experience.
I guess my point is, if you dont have a background in business it is going to be hard to get in the door unless you are willing to work as a temp or do a co/op. OR KNOW SOMEONE! Network network network.
Also, try looking into Manufacturing companies like UTC/GE/Boeing/Lockheed/General Dynamics etc.. These companies are huge and are always hiring.

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morrison in North Hollywood, California

38 months ago

Youngin in East Hartford, Connecticut said: Hey all, sorry to hear about everyone's fruitless job searches. Not sure if the times have changed, but this is the route i took.

Graduated BS Finance at the University of Connecticut in 2008
During last two years of school, worked as an intern/co op at United Technologies (UTX).
After graduating, i got accepted into their financial leadership program, a two year rotational program for graduates with finance backgrounds or related fields.
Graduated recently from the program and now work as a Program Financial Control Analyst for one of UTC's business units. Not a dream job, but great experience.
I guess my point is, if you dont have a background in business it is going to be hard to get in the door unless you are willing to work as a temp or do a co/op. OR KNOW SOMEONE! Network network network.
Also, try looking into Manufacturing companies like UTC/GE/Boeing/Lockheed/General Dynamics etc.. These companies are huge and are always hiring.

I have a degree in finance and it's being hard getting a job in finance. I work for wells fargo as a personal banker and it's all sales.

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Jimmy Shao in Toronto, Ontario

27 months ago

Hey guys, guess how i got to this website! I googled the phrase "why is it so hard to land an analyst job" and clicked on the first link.
Well, I have been struggling with finding a finance job for the past 2 months. I also just moved here to Toronto just to gain more exposure to finance related sectors. I passed the second level in the CFA program but find it still hard to find jobs. My main weakness is that I graduated with a BSc and i have no direct related finance experience other than selling insurance and mutual funds to people. So sick of it.
Although I know that passing some CFA tests does not simply get me a job, I thought at least it will get me some interviews...well as it turns out, I have got only 1 legit (the others are financial advising positions) call from a hiring agency in the past 2 months. Looks though as it is falling through!

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