14 Careers You Can Do With a Financial Engineering Degree

Updated December 9, 2022

Financial engineering provides many unique challenges and benefits to those who pursue this career path, including high-earning compensation for most jobs and integration with many potential industries. If you're interested in this field, it's helpful to know about the degree you can earn and what jobs you can do with it. In this article, we discuss what financial engineers do, what financial engineering is and list 14 careers you can pursue with a financial engineering degree.

Related: What Is a Financial Analyst?

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What do financial engineers do?

Financial engineers solve financial problems for companies. They use various math techniques and testing tools and methods for analysis. They're often involved with corporate finance, portfolio management, risk management and trading. Financial engineers work with insurance companies, banks and asset management companies to help them with investment decisions and managing risks.

What is financial engineering?

Financial engineering refers to a science-based analysis of economic factors using various mathematical models. Financial engineers use these models to help clients decide about saving, borrowing, lending, investing and managing risks. Careers in financial engineering may focus on a variety of elements, including:

  • Creating new quantitative models for analyzing financial information

  • Integrating these models with a company's planning processes

  • Programming software to develop and manage these models and risks

  • Educating clients on methods for improving their financial planning

Related: 7 Careers for Financial Advisers

Which financial engineering degrees are available?

Financial engineering degree programs are available from many colleges and universities, though not every school will provide undergraduate and graduate degrees and may focus on just one type. A few degree options from which you can choose include:

  • Bachelor's degree in financial engineering

  • Master's degree in financial engineering

  • Doctorate in financial engineering

Certification programs for financial engineering include risk management assurance, quantitative finance, information system auditing and machine learning. These courses may prepare individuals for varying types of job duties. For example, machine learning could help a financial engineer understand programming and other steps. In addition, many financial engineering jobs require just a bachelor's degree for entry-level work. Others may want a bachelor's or a doctorate, depending on the roles and duties of the position.

Related: What Is Financial Modeling?

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14 jobs you can do with a financial engineering degree

Here are 14 common jobs available for those with a financial engineering degree. For the most up-to-date salaries, please click on the links below:

1. Financial specialist

National average salary: $51,894 per year

Primary duties: A financial specialist helps businesses organize and execute their economic plans. They may help decide fiscal policies, create financial reports, keep accounting records accurate and create budgets with their clients. Some financial specialists also help create cost analyses and examine expenditures to keep their clients on a budget.

2. Data analyst

National average salary: $64,783 per year

Primary duties: A data analyst gathers information from various sources and works to identify financial trends. They might work with multiple data-collecting teams, synchronize marketing and operational processes, and present information to their clients as needed. In addition, they may need to help clients create financial plans, depending on their position and duties.

Read more: Learn About Being a Data Analyst

3. Financial analyst

National average salary: $67,385 per year

Primary duties: A financial analyst assists companies in making decisions about their operation. They may analyze market trends, examine clients' financial status, recommend various actions, and provide assistance as needed. Some financial analysts work freelance, while others may work for a company.

Read more: Learn About Being a Financial Analyst

4. Market analyst

National average salary: $68,016 per year

Primary duties: Market analysts carefully assess a company's sales and services to gauge its potential success in the current market. They analyze various types of qualitative data, discuss trends in the market, and produce strategies that help a firm compete at a higher level. Depending on their role, they may work with an analyst firm or directly with clients.

5. Portfolio analyst

National average salary: $69,373 per year

Primary duties: A portfolio analyst examines a client's financial information and works to strengthen their portfolio. For example, they may review a clients' stocks, bonds, savings accounts, and other investments to figure out their strengths and weaknesses. Other duties may include suggesting investment strategies that could help their client thrive.

6. Risk analyst

National average salary: $72,586 per year

Primary duties: A risk analyst considers all financial documents while gauging a business's economic conditions and investment risks. Their duties may include analyzing potential dangers in investments and calculating whether they're wise for a company. Risk analysts work in many fields, though often specialize in insurance and financial fields, such as working for a bank.

7. Financial adviser

National average salary: $74,951 per year

Primary duties: A financial adviser works with clients to provide education on various products and services to improve their economic strength. They may help clients set and reach different monetary goals, examine their risk tolerance and determine their expenses and assets. Other duties include keeping clients focused on their financial progress.

Read more: Learn About Being a Financial Adviser

8. Data scientist

National average salary: $75,181 per year

Primary duties: A data scientist works with businesses to create financial goals based on meaningful data information. They may help these firms understand this data through proper synthesis and develop algorithms and predictive models to expand their understanding. Data scientists also provide charts and reports to keep their clients informed of any changes.

Read more: Learn About Being a Data Scientist

9. Portfolio manager

National average salary: $77,152 per year

Primary duties: A portfolio manager handles a client's financial portfolio to help make it more effective. Their responsibilities may include consulting with clients on their investment objectives, analyzing their current performance, creating reports to explore what is happening and shifting their investments as needed. Portfolio managers often work with multiple clients at the same time.

10. Sales engineer

National average salary: $80,385 per year

Primary duties: A sales engineer works to set up service and sales agreements that benefit their clients. Their responsibilities include identifying potential customers, examining a company's sales environment and finalizing deals with outside firms. Fields with sales engineers include manufacturing, services and retail markets.

Read more: Learn About Being a Sales Engineer

11. Risk manager

National average salary: $82,405 per year

Primary duties: Risk managers analyze various business and financial risks for a company and develop strategies for coping with them. They may develop multiple risk management controls, produce contingency plans for emergencies, and create risk management recommendations for business teams. A risk manager may work in many fields, including the financial and security sectors.

12. Director of finance

National average salary: $96,355 per year

Primary duties: A director of finance pays attention to all financial activities in a company to ensure that they remain secure. They may create revenue reports, figure out financial strategies, create and execute economic policies and distribute funds to the proper sources.

Read more: Learn About Being a Director of Finance

13. Data engineer

National average salary: $116,993 per year

Primary duties: A data engineer analyzes financial information and uses it to create detailed analyses of a company's economic health. They may work directly with managers, owners and executives to understand this information and use it for financial planning. Data engineers may also create algorithms for collecting and managing this information.

14. Quantitative model developer

National average salary: $139,319 per year

Primary duties: A quantitative model developer programs various financial software to produce intelligent tracking, investing and modeling solutions. Their responsibilities may include creating simple programs that companies can utilize, training them to use them, and analyzing a projection model that works for them. They may work for one firm or as a freelance analyst.

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