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Become A Senior Finance Analyst

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Working As A Senior Finance Analyst

  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Processing Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $92,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Finance Analyst Do

Financial analysts provide guidance to businesses and individuals making investment decisions. They assess the performance of stocks, bonds, and other types of investments.

Duties

Financial analysts typically do the following:

  • Recommend individual investments and collections of investments, which are known as portfolios
  • Evaluate current and historical financial data
  • Study economic and business trends
  • Examine a company’s financial statements to determine its value
  • Meet with company officials to gain better insight into the company’s prospects
  • Assess the strength of the management team
  • Prepare written reports

Financial analysts evaluate investment opportunities. They work in banks, pension funds, mutual funds, securities firms, insurance companies, and other businesses. Financial analysts are also called securities analysts and investment analysts.

Financial analysts can be divided into two categories: buy-side analysts and sell-side analysts.

  • Buy-side analysts develop investment strategies for companies that have a lot of money to invest. These companies, called institutional investors, include mutual funds, hedge funds, insurance companies, independent money managers, and nonprofit organizations with large endowments, such as some universities.
  • Sell-side analysts advise financial services sales agents who sell stocks, bonds, and other investments.

Some analysts work for the business media or other research houses, which are independent from the buy and sell side.

Financial analysts generally focus on trends affecting a specific industry, geographical region, or type of product. For example, an analyst may focus on a subject area such as the energy industry, a world region such as Eastern Europe, or the foreign exchange market. They must understand how new regulations, policies, and political and economic trends may affect investments.

Investing is becoming more global, and some financial analysts specialize in a particular country or region. Companies want those financial analysts to understand the language, culture, business environment, and political conditions in the country or region that they cover.

The following are examples of types of financial analysts:

Portfolio managers select the mix of products, industries, and regions for their company’s investment portfolio. These managers are responsible for the overall performance of the portfolio. They are also expected to explain investment decisions and strategies in meetings with stakeholders.

Fund managers work exclusively with hedge funds or mutual funds. Both fund and portfolio managers frequently make buy or sell decisions in reaction to quickly changing market conditions.

Ratings analysts evaluate the ability of companies or governments to pay their debts, including bonds. On the basis of their evaluation, a management team rates the risk of a company or government not being able to repay its bonds.

Risk analysts evaluate the risk in investment decisions and determine how to manage unpredictability and limit potential losses. This job is carried out by making investment decisions such as selecting dissimilar stocks or having a combination of stocks, bonds, and mutual funds in a portfolio.

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How To Become A Senior Finance Analyst

Financial analysts typically must have a bachelor’s degree, but a master’s degree is often required for advanced positions.

Education

Most positions require a bachelor’s degree. A number of fields of study provide appropriate preparation, including accounting, economics, finance, statistics, and mathematics. For advanced positions, employers often require a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) or a master’s degree in finance. Knowledge of options pricing, bond valuation, and risk management are important.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the main licensing organization for the securities industry. It requires licenses for many financial analyst positions. Most of the licenses require sponsorship by an employer, so companies do not expect individuals to have these licenses before starting a job.

Certification is often recommended by employers and can improve the chances for advancement. An example is the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) certification from the CFA Institute. Financial analysts can become CFA certified if they have a bachelor’s degree, 4 years of qualified work experience, and pass three exams. Financial analysts can also become certified in their field of specialty.

Advancement

Financial analysts typically start by specializing in a specific investment field. As they gain experience, they can become portfolio managers, who select the mix of investments for a company’s portfolio. They can also become fund managers, who manage large investment portfolios for individual investors. A master’s degree in finance or business administration can improve an analyst’s chances of advancing to one of these positions.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Financial analysts must process a range of information in finding profitable investments.

Communication skills. Financial analysts must explain their recommendations to clients in clear language that clients can easily understand.

Computer skills. Financial analysts must be adept at using software packages to analyze financial data, see trends, create portfolios, and make forecasts.

Decisionmaking skills. Financial analysts must provide a recommendation to buy, hold, or sell a security.

Detail oriented. Financial analysts must pay attention to details when reviewing possible investments, as small issues may have large implications for the health of an investment.

Math skills. Financial analysts use mathematical skills when estimating the value of financial securities. 

To be successful, financial analysts must be motivated to seek out obscure information that may be important to the investment. Many work independently and must have self-confidence in their judgment.

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Average Length of Employment
Finance Analyst 2.8 years
Top Careers Before Senior Finance Analyst
Accountant 8.0%
Controller 3.5%
Analyst 2.9%
Consultant 2.0%
Internship 1.9%
Manager 1.7%
Top Careers After Senior Finance Analyst
Controller 8.0%
Consultant 4.8%
Manager 4.5%
Accountant 2.4%
Director 2.2%

Do you work as a Senior Finance Analyst?

Senior Finance Analyst Demographics

Gender

Male

55.5%

Female

35.5%

Unknown

9.0%
Ethnicity

White

56.8%

Hispanic or Latino

14.5%

Asian

13.3%

Black or African American

11.2%

Unknown

4.2%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

36.1%

French

11.5%

Chinese

9.2%

Mandarin

8.1%

German

6.1%

Portuguese

5.4%

Russian

4.7%

Italian

3.4%

Cantonese

2.9%

Hindi

2.2%

Arabic

1.9%

Korean

1.6%

Japanese

1.5%

Polish

1.2%

Urdu

1.0%

Gujarati

0.8%

Vietnamese

0.8%

Turkish

0.6%

Greek

0.5%

Hebrew

0.4%
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Senior Finance Analyst Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

15.2%

DePaul University

7.6%

New York University

6.3%

University of Southern California

5.3%

Arizona State University

5.0%

Northeastern University

4.7%

University of Texas at Austin

4.5%

George Washington University

4.4%

Georgia State University

4.4%

University of Houston

4.3%

Strayer University

4.2%

San Jose State University

4.2%

Pennsylvania State University

4.1%

University of Chicago

4.1%

Pace University - New York

4.0%

George Mason University

4.0%

Drexel University

3.5%

University of Maryland - University College

3.5%

Wayne State University

3.4%

University of Florida

3.3%
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Majors

Business

31.5%

Finance

27.8%

Accounting

25.6%

Management

3.4%

Economics

2.9%

Marketing

1.4%

International Business

0.8%

Business Economics

0.7%

Project Management

0.7%

Management Information Systems

0.6%

Political Science

0.5%

Real Estate

0.5%

Computer Information Systems

0.5%

Mathematics

0.5%

Management Science

0.5%

Law

0.5%

Computer Science

0.4%

Health Care Administration

0.4%

Education

0.4%

Information Technology

0.4%
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Degrees

Masters

51.5%

Bachelors

39.4%

Other

4.9%

Certificate

2.0%

Associate

1.0%

Doctorate

0.9%

Diploma

0.2%

License

0.1%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$92,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$66,000
Min 10%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$128,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
College Board
Highest Paying City
Foster City, CA
Highest Paying State
California
Avg Experience Level
3.6 years
How much does a Senior Finance Analyst make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Senior Finance Analyst in the United States is $92,630 per year or $45 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $66,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $128,000.

Real Senior Finance Analyst Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Vice President-Senior Quantitative Financial Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY Oct 28, 2016 $190,000 -
$210,000
Vice President; SR Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America New York, NY Oct 14, 2016 $185,000
Director, Senior Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY Aug 09, 2016 $180,000 -
$200,000
Senior Financial Analyst Devere USA, Inc. New York, NY Jul 19, 2016 $178,240
Senior Financial Analyst Lendingclub Corporation San Francisco, CA Sep 08, 2016 $178,069
VP; SR. Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY Apr 27, 2015 $175,000 -
$195,000
VP; SR. Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America N.A. Charlotte, NC Jul 27, 2015 $175,000 -
$195,000
Vice President; SR Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY Aug 15, 2016 $175,000 -
$195,000
Vice President; SR Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY May 11, 2015 $175,000 -
$195,000
Vice President; Senior Quantitative Financial Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY Jun 27, 2016 $175,000 -
$195,000
Senior Financial Analyst Project Finance Advisory Limited San Francisco, CA Oct 30, 2015 $175,000
Senior Financial Analyst Devere USA, Inc. New York, NY Dec 24, 2015 $173,850
Vice President; Senior Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY Aug 22, 2016 $165,000 -
$185,000
Vice President, Senior Quantitative Finance Analyst Bank of America N.A. New York, NY May 16, 2016 $165,000 -
$185,000
Senior Financial Analyst Zones, Inc. Auburn, WA Dec 31, 2016 $103,397
Senior Financial Analyst Intuit Inc. Los Angeles, CA Feb 23, 2015 $103,334 -
$107,000
SR. Financial Analyst NSD International, Inc. Elmsford, NY Mar 21, 2016 $103,200
Senior Financial Analyst McAfee, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Jun 29, 2015 $102,814 -
$122,814
Senior Financial Analyst Hewlett-Packard Company Sunnyvale, CA Sep 25, 2015 $102,814 -
$154,351
Senior Financial Analyst Downey Regional Medical Center Hospital, Inc. Downey, CA Feb 26, 2016 $102,326
Senior Analyst, Financial Consolidations FCA Us LLC Auburn Hills, MI Aug 29, 2016 $102,000
SR. Finance Analyst BMC Software, Inc. Houston, TX Jul 21, 2016 $89,900 -
$112,500
Senior Financial Analyst-Treasury Mead Johnson and Company, LLC Glenview, IL Jan 09, 2016 $89,669 -
$100,000
SR. Analyst-Corp. Development & Financial Analysis Ball Corporation Broomfield, CO Oct 14, 2016 $89,000
Senior Financial Analyst Philips Electronics North America Corporation Andover, MA Feb 19, 2016 $89,000
Senior Financial Analyst Charter Communications Stamford, CT Apr 06, 2015 $88,900
Senior Financial Analyst Hewlett-Packard Company Houston, TX Aug 18, 2015 $88,897 -
$112,000
Senior Financial Analyst Pinterest, Inc. San Francisco, CA Aug 02, 2016 $88,500 -
$128,300
Senior Financial Analyst IBM Corporation Somers, NY Sep 09, 2015 $88,463 -
$166,001

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Top Skills for A Senior Finance Analyst

  1. Financial Statements
  2. Variance Analysis
  3. A/P
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Assess and analyze financial statements of potential merger & acquisition targets and provide detail memorandum summarizing findings to senior level management.
  • Performed financial planning and analysis functions such as monthly forecasts and variance analysis for various business units.
  • Perform daily interface reconciliations from external applications into A/P payment system.
  • Collaborated with business units worldwide, ensuring complete and accurate data was presented timely to senior management during close cycle.
  • Prepare quarterly audit packages for external auditors and parent company.

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Top 10 Best States for Senior Finance Analysts

  1. Connecticut
  2. Washington
  3. New York
  4. California
  5. New Jersey
  6. Michigan
  7. Missouri
  8. Minnesota
  9. Pennsylvania
  10. North Carolina
  • (523 jobs)
  • (1,018 jobs)
  • (2,248 jobs)
  • (5,506 jobs)
  • (1,040 jobs)
  • (789 jobs)
  • (488 jobs)
  • (864 jobs)
  • (1,118 jobs)
  • (1,082 jobs)

Top Senior Finance Analyst Employers

Jobs From Top Senior Finance Analyst Employers

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