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Become An Investment Consultant

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Working As An Investment Consultant

  • Getting Information
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Mostly Sitting

  • $82,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Investment Consultant Do

Personal financial advisors provide advice on investments, insurance, mortgages, college savings, estate planning, taxes, and retirement to help individuals manage their finances.  

Duties

Personal financial advisors typically do the following:

  • Meet with clients in person to discuss their financial goals
  • Explain the types of financial services they provide to potential clients
  • Educate clients and answer questions about investment options and potential risks
  • Recommend investments to clients or select investments on their behalf
  • Help clients plan for specific circumstances, such as education expenses or retirement
  • Monitor clients’ accounts and determine if changes are needed to improve the performance or to accommodate life changes, such as getting married or having children
  • Research investment opportunities

Personal financial advisors assess the financial needs of individuals and help them with decisions on investments (such as stocks and bonds), tax laws, and insurance. Advisors help clients plan for short- and long-term goals, such as meeting education expenses and saving for retirement through investments. They invest clients’ money based on the clients’ decisions. Many advisors also provide tax advice or sell insurance.

Although most planners offer advice on a wide range of topics, some specialize in areas such as retirement or risk management (evaluating how willing the investor is to take chances and adjusting investments accordingly).

Many personal financial advisors spend a lot of time marketing their services, and they meet potential clients by giving seminars or through business and social networking. Networking is the process of meeting and exchanging information with people, or groups of people, who have similar interests.

After financial advisors have invested funds for a client, they and the client receive regular investment reports. Advisors monitor the client’s investments and usually meet with each client at least once a year to update the client on potential investments and to adjust the financial plan based on the client’s circumstances or because investment options may have changed.

Many personal financial advisors are licensed to directly buy and sell financial products, such as stocks, bonds, annuities, and insurance. Depending on the agreement they have with their clients, personal financial advisors may have the client’s permission to make decisions about buying and selling stocks and bonds.

Private bankers or wealth managers are personal financial advisors who work for people who have a lot of money to invest. These clients are similar to institutional investors (commonly, companies or organizations), and they approach investing differently than the general public does. Private bankers manage a collection of investments, called a portfolio, for these clients by using the resources of the bank, including teams of financial analysts, accountants, and other professionals.

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How To Become An Investment Consultant

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.

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Investment Consultant Jobs

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Investment Consultant Career Paths

Investment Consultant
Consultant Account Manager Regional Sales Manager
Regional Sales Director
11 Yearsyrs
Consultant Sales Manager Sales Vice President
Senior Vice President, Sales
14 Yearsyrs
Consultant Manager General Manager
Regional Vice President
11 Yearsyrs
Branch Manager General Manager Vice President
Group Vice President
9 Yearsyrs
Branch Manager General Manager Account Manager
Relationship Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Branch Manager Office Manager Property Manager
Portfolio Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Relationship Manager Vice President
Vice President And Portfolio Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Relationship Manager Project Manager Portfolio Manager
Senior Portfolio Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Relationship Manager Project Manager Partner
Founding Partner
7 Yearsyrs
Manager Office Manager Accounting Manager
Tax Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Manager Account Manager Client Services Manager
Client Relationship Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Portfolio Manager
Investments Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Sales Manager Branch Sales Manager
Banking Center Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Sales Manager Branch Sales Manager Banking Center Manager
Finance Center Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Assistant Manager Assistant Branch Manager
Business Development Officer
7 Yearsyrs
Assistant Manager Assistant Branch Manager Business Development Officer
Business Relationship Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Consultant Consultant/Team Lead Senior Account Executive
Senior Sales Executive
8 Yearsyrs
Credit Analyst Commercial Loan Officer Business Relationship Manager
Senior Relationship Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Credit Analyst Bank Officer Assistant Vice President, Marketing
Vice President, Strategy
13 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Client Services Manager Client Manager
Client Account Manager
6 Yearsyrs
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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Investment Officer 4.0 years
Investment Advisor 3.3 years
Investment Banker 3.3 years
Finance Advisor 2.7 years
Finance Consultant 2.6 years
Investment Analyst 2.2 years
Top Careers Before Investment Consultant
Internship 8.2%
Consultant 4.5%
Manager 3.8%
Associate 2.7%
Top Careers After Investment Consultant
Consultant 9.9%
Manager 3.4%
Owner 3.1%
Director 3.0%

Do you work as an Investment Consultant?

Investment Consultant Demographics

Gender

Male

68.5%

Female

18.4%

Unknown

13.2%
Ethnicity

White

57.7%

Hispanic or Latino

14.0%

Asian

13.3%

Black or African American

10.5%

Unknown

4.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

28.4%

French

14.2%

Mandarin

13.5%

Chinese

9.9%

Russian

5.7%

Cantonese

5.0%

Arabic

4.3%

Portuguese

3.5%

Korean

2.8%

Japanese

2.1%

Vietnamese

1.4%

German

1.4%

Hmong

1.4%

Hindi

1.4%

Italian

1.4%

Lithuanian

0.7%

Somali

0.7%

Dutch

0.7%

Urdu

0.7%

Afrikaans

0.7%
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Investment Consultant Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

9.3%

New York University

6.3%

Arizona State University

6.3%

University of Texas at Austin

5.7%

University of North Texas

5.3%

Fordham University

5.3%

Boston University

5.3%

Saint John's University - New York

5.0%

University of Texas at Arlington

4.7%

University of Utah

4.7%

Cornell University

4.7%

DePaul University

4.7%

Columbia University

4.7%

Pennsylvania State University

4.3%

University of Southern California

4.3%

University of Washington

4.0%

Georgetown University

4.0%

Texas A&M University

4.0%

Boston College

3.7%

George Washington University

3.7%
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Majors

Finance

29.7%

Business

29.6%

Economics

6.8%

Accounting

6.1%

Marketing

4.2%

Management

3.6%

Political Science

3.2%

Law

2.2%

Communication

2.0%

Psychology

1.9%

Real Estate

1.4%

Computer Science

1.2%

Liberal Arts

1.2%

Business Economics

1.1%

Education

1.1%

International Business

1.0%

History

1.0%

Small Business Management

0.9%

Legal Research And Advanced Professional Studies

0.9%

English

0.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

50.3%

Masters

30.1%

Other

10.8%

Certificate

2.8%

Associate

2.4%

Doctorate

2.4%

Diploma

0.6%

License

0.5%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$82,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$43,000
Min 10%
$82,000
Median 50%
$82,000
Median 50%
$82,000
Median 50%
$82,000
Median 50%
$82,000
Median 50%
$82,000
Median 50%
$82,000
Median 50%
$155,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Legg Mason
Highest Paying City
Beaverton, OR
Highest Paying State
Oregon
Avg Experience Level
2.9 years
How much does an Investment Consultant make at top companies?
The national average salary for an Investment Consultant in the United States is $82,259 per year or $40 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $43,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $155,000.

Real Investment Consultant Salaries

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 -
$240,100
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 -
$155,000
Senior Investment Consultant Alan D. Biller & Associates, Inc. Menlo Park, CA Oct 06, 2009 $130,000 -
$175,000
Investment Consultant Cambridge Associates, LLC Boston, MA Sep 29, 2012 $110,000 -
$120,000
Investment Consultant Cambridge Associates, LLC Boston, MA Jun 04, 2012 $100,000 -
$120,000
Investment Risk Consultant Aflac Incorporated Columbus, GA Jun 07, 2010 $100,000
Investment Consultant Cambridge Associates, LLC Boston, MA Dec 15, 2011 $100,000 -
$115,000
Investment Consultant Cambridge Associates, LLC Boston, MA Oct 01, 2011 $100,000 -
$120,000
Investment Consultant Cambridge Associates, LLC Arlington, VA Dec 19, 2011 $100,000 -
$120,000
GBS Investment Solutions Consultant-Investment Program T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc. Baltimore, MD May 02, 2016 $88,400 -
$155,600
Senior Investment Consultant Mercer Investment Consulting, Inc. New York, NY Oct 01, 2011 $87,000 -
$94,000
Investment Consultant Mercer Investment Consulting, Inc. New York, NY Aug 19, 2016 $69,000 -
$94,900
Investment Consultant Mercer Investment Consulting Inc. Chicago, IL Sep 05, 2014 $66,300 -
$69,000
Investment Consultant Daniel Choi CPA, Inc. Novi, MI Jun 22, 2011 $64,938
CMR Investment Consulting, LLC CMR Investment Consulting, LLC Alhambra, CA Sep 11, 2015 $59,187
Bilingual Investment Consultant Scottrade, Inc. Boston, MA Sep 16, 2014 $54,080
Investment Consultant Mercer (Us) Inc. Chicago, IL Sep 05, 2011 $48,000 -
$53,600
Bilingual Investment Consultant Scottrade, Inc. Milpitas, CA Sep 02, 2016 $47,000
Bilingual Investment Consultant Scottrade, Inc. Rowland Heights, CA Sep 19, 2015 $47,000
Bilingual Investment Consultant Scottrade, Inc. Milpitas, CA Feb 09, 2016 $47,000
Bilingual Investment Consultant Scottrade, Inc. Millburn, NJ Feb 22, 2016 $45,000 -
$49,000
Bilingual Investment Consultant Scottrade, Inc. Rockville, MD Sep 15, 2014 $41,351
Investment Consultant Scottrade, Inc. Rockville, MD Sep 09, 2014 $41,351

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Top Skills for An Investment Consultant

  1. Asset Allocation
  2. Sales Floor
  3. Investment Strategies
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Prepared and used asset allocation and diversification models to provide solid advice and recommendations to customers on retirement options.
  • Performed market analysis to determine risk and investment strategies.
  • Facilitated client goal achievement through effective planning and expert management of the qualified and non-qualified funds comprising high-value investment portfolios.
  • Developed relationships with existing clients and built relationships with new clients resulting in asset accumulation and retention.
  • Represented the firm at industry conferences and promoted new business development through proactive networking and conference speaking engagements.

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Top 10 Best States for Investment Consultants

  1. District of Columbia
  2. New York
  3. Delaware
  4. New Jersey
  5. North Carolina
  6. Indiana
  7. Georgia
  8. California
  9. Washington
  10. Connecticut
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  • (462 jobs)
  • (31 jobs)
  • (227 jobs)
  • (238 jobs)
  • (143 jobs)
  • (223 jobs)
  • (1,064 jobs)
  • (190 jobs)
  • (83 jobs)

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