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Personal financial advisors typically need a bachelor’s degree. A master’s degree and certification can improve one’s chances for advancement in the occupation.Education
Personal financial advisors typically need a bachelor’s degree. Although employers usually do not require personal financial advisors to have completed a specific course of study, a degree in finance, economics, accounting, business, mathematics, or law is good preparation for this occupation. Courses in investments, taxes, estate planning, and risk management are also helpful. Programs in financial planning are becoming more available in colleges and universities.Training
Once they are hired, personal financial advisors often enter an on-the-job training period. During this time, new advisors work under the supervision of senior advisors and learn how to perform their duties, including building a client network and developing investment portfolios. This training usually lasts for more than a year.Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
Personal financial advisors who directly buy or sell stocks, bonds, or insurance policies, or who provide specific investment advice, need a combination of licenses that varies with the products they sell. In addition to being required to have those licenses, advisors in smaller firms that manage clients’ investments must be registered with state regulators and those in larger firms must be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Personal financial advisors who choose to sell insurance need licenses issued by state boards. Information on state licensing board requirements for registered investment advisors is available from the North American Securities Administrators Association.
Certifications can enhance a personal financial advisor’s reputation and can help bring in new clients. The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards offers the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification. For this certification, advisors must have a bachelor’s degree, complete at least 3 years of relevant work experience, pass an exam, and agree to adhere to a code of ethics. The exam covers the financial planning process, insurance and risk management, employee benefits planning, taxes and retirement planning, investment and real estate planning, debt management, planning liability, emergency fund reserves, and statistical modeling.Advancement
A master’s degree in an area such as finance or business administration can improve a personal financial advisor’s chances of moving into a management position and attracting new clients.Important Qualities
Analytical skills. In determining an investment portfolio for a client, personal financial advisors must be able to take into account a range of information, including economic trends, regulatory changes, and the client’s comfort with risky decisions.
Interpersonal skills. A major part of a personal financial advisor’s job is making clients feel comfortable. Advisors must establish trust with clients and respond well to their questions and concerns.
Math skills. Personal financial advisors should be good at mathematics because they constantly work with numbers. They determine the amount invested, how that amount has grown or decreased over time, and how a portfolio is distributed among different investments.
Sales skills. To expand their base of clients, personal financial advisors must be convincing and persistent in selling their services.
Speaking skills. Personal financial advisors interact with clients every day. They must explain complex financial concepts in understandable language.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Investment Consultant
Top Careers After Investment Consultant
Hispanic or Latino8.5%
Black or African American0.8%
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University of Utah7.7%
New York University5.9%
University of Phoenix5.9%
University of North Texas4.7%
West Virginia University4.7%
University of Washington4.7%
University of Denver4.7%
University of Pennsylvania4.1%
Ohio State University4.1%
Carnegie Mellon University4.1%
Florida State University4.1%
Unfortunately we don’t have enough data for this section.
|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Senior Investment Consultant||Mercer Investment Consulting Inc.||New York, NY||Oct 06, 2016||$255,000|
|Senior Investment Consultant||Mercer Investment Consulting Inc.||New York, NY||Sep 16, 2014||$150,700 -
|Investment Consultant||Bailey & Glasser, LLP||Washington, DC||Oct 01, 2014||$150,000|
|Investment Consultant||Bailey & Glasser, LLP||Charleston, WV||Sep 10, 2014||$150,000|
|Senior Investment Consultant||Cambridge Associates, LLC||Boston, MA||Sep 14, 2010||$135,000 -
|Senior Investment Consultant||Alan D. Biller & Associates, Inc.||Menlo Park, CA||Oct 06, 2009||$130,000 -
|Investment Consultant||Cambridge Associates, LLC||Boston, MA||Sep 29, 2012||$110,000 -
|Investment Consultant||Cambridge Associates, LLC||Boston, MA||Jun 04, 2012||$100,000 -
|Investment Consultant||Cambridge Associates, LLC||Boston, MA||Oct 01, 2011||$100,000 -
|Investment Risk Consultant||Aflac Incorporated||Columbus, GA||Jun 07, 2010||$100,000|
|Investment Consultant||Cambridge Associates, LLC||Arlington, VA||Dec 19, 2011||$100,000 -
|Investment Consultant||Cambridge Associates, LLC||Boston, MA||Dec 15, 2011||$100,000 -
|GBS Investment Solutions Consultant-Investment Program||T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc.||Baltimore, MD||May 02, 2016||$88,400 -
|Senior Investment Consultant||Mercer Investment Consulting, Inc.||New York, NY||Oct 01, 2011||$87,000 -
|Quantitative Analyst/Investment Consultant||Morningstar Associates, LLC||Chicago, IL||Nov 22, 2010||$86,507 -
|Quantitative Analyst/Investment Consultant||Morningstar Associates, LLC||Chicago, IL||Dec 01, 2010||$86,507 -
|Investment Consultant||Mercer Investment Consulting, Inc.||New York, NY||Aug 19, 2016||$69,000 -
|Investment Consultant||Mercer Investment Consulting Inc.||Chicago, IL||Sep 05, 2014||$66,300 -
|Investment Consultant||Daniel Choi CPA, Inc.||Novi, MI||Jun 22, 2011||$64,938|
|Senior Regional Investment Consultant II||Fidelity Investments Institutional Services Compan||Smithfield, RI||Apr 04, 2011||$49,877 -
|Investment Consultant||Mercer (Us) Inc.||Chicago, IL||Sep 05, 2011||$48,000 -
|Bilingual Investment Consultant||Scottrade, Inc.||Milpitas, CA||Sep 02, 2016||$47,000|
|Bilingual Investment Consultant||Scottrade, Inc.||Milpitas, CA||Feb 09, 2016||$47,000|
|Bilingual Investment Consultant||Scottrade, Inc.||Rowland Heights, CA||Sep 19, 2015||$47,000|
|Bilingual Investment Consultant||Scottrade, Inc.||Millburn, NJ||Feb 22, 2016||$45,000 -
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A Day in the Life of a Financial Advisor
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