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Qualifications Needed for a Career in Investments

By: Garry Crystal - Updated: 18 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Career Investment Careers Qualifications

There are certain qualifications that will be required for a career in investments. The right qualifications will help you with career development, whether you are considering a career in investment banking, commercial banking or in a broader financial advisory area. Good A level passes will usually only get you through the door but degrees and further professional qualifications can be the quickest way to higher level positions.

Types of Investment Careers

There are many different types of careers in the investments sector and in a great many industries. From investment analysts, investment bankers, commercial banks, insurance and pensions advisors, and financial advisors. Each career may have different regulatory bodies and their own qualification standards. Many investments jobs can be obtained with some form of degree but graduates with degrees such as economics, business, finance and statistics, and law degrees are much sought after by the investments sector.

Entry Level Job Qualifications

If you have good A level passes and some form of college diploma such as a Higher National Diploma (HND) then entry level jobs in investment careers can be obtained. Entry level jobs are jobs such as administration clerks and finance assistants. Trainee jobs such as investment bankers will usually not be possible unless you have a degree or an HND. However, entry level jobs do give employees a foot in the door, and those with aptitude can then utilise the in house training schemes.

Professional Qualifications and Accreditation

There are a number of professional qualifications that are needed in the investments sector. Many investments employees will need a licence to practice that can only be gained by passing exams held through the Securities and Investment Institute. There are a number of qualifications available through the Securities and Investments Institute (SII) for new entrants into the investments industry and for those developing their careers.

Qualifications Available from SII

The SII is one of the main providers of qualifications to the investments industry. Exams that can be sat will be dependant on how developed your career is and the qualifications you have already gained.Qualifications available include:
  • Introduction to Investments
  • Investment Foundation Programmes
  • Certificate in Corporate Finance
  • Securities and Investments Diploma
  • Diploma in Investment Compliance
  • Diploma in Investment Operations
  • Advanced Investment Schemes Admin
  • International Investment Award

CFA Qualifications

Accreditation may also be needed through the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (CFA). Investment professionals who have completed all the requirements and exams laid down by the CFA will qualify as a CFA Charterholder. Requirements will include having three years of investment experience and passing three exams over three years. They must also abide by the CFA Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct. This qualification is one of the most prestigious for those in the field of investments.

Information on Gaining Qualifications

More information on gaining investment career qualifications and accreditation can be gained by visiting the websites for the CFA and the Securities and Investments Institute. Those who are considering taking exams as a way to develop their career should first ask their employer about career development policies. Employers should pay for tuition and exam fees if the qualifications are necessary and will bring more skills and experience to the company. Careers advisors and career development offices will also be able to provide useful information on all of the financial qualifications available.

Gaining vital qualifications is the best way to further any career. It will enable employees to climb the career ladder and higher salaries should also reflect the qualifications that have been gained. In some cases these qualifications are necessary for the job but in other cases they will also be needed to progress to a higher rank within a career.

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