what is a finance analyst?

You use industry knowledge, market trends and financial data to find the best strategy for continued growth. Your job involves analysing economic trends, financial information and business news.

As a finance analyst, you work in investment companies or financial institutions like banks. Some businesses also need internal finance analysts to monitor their investment strategies and minimise losses. Aside from working in finance sectors, you can also work in technology, health and mining companies.

Since you build financial models for data analysis and forecasting, proficiency in various statistical software for analysis and portfolio building is important. The tools help you keep track of past and present financial information and use predictive models to determine if an investment deal is viable.

finance analyst job description

As a finance analyst, you can work as a buy-side analyst. Your job entails developing investment strategies for institutional investors like hedge funds, insurance companies and mutual funds. Finance analysts also work on the sell side, guiding individuals or financial service agents on the best-performing stocks, bonds and investments. Switching between buyer-side and seller-side clients is possible since the roles and prediction models are similar. However, buyer-side finance analysts have broader responsibilities and experience higher expectations of accuracy.

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average salary of a finance analyst

The median remuneration package of a finance analyst is between $85,000 to $105,000 annually in New Zealand. The salaries usually fluctuate based on the years of experience and qualifications. 

how to increase the salary of a finance analyst

The salary of finance analysts fluctuates depending on your qualifications and experience. When you have minimal experience, you cannot perform complex duties or advise on some investment decisions. Your remuneration package will gradually increase as you improve your skills and hone your financial planning expertise.

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types of finance analysts

Some types of finance analysts include:

  • investment banking analysts: your responsibility as an investment banking analyst is to help companies meet their financial goals by looking for investment opportunities. You also create economic models and complete evaluations to determine the performance of current investments.
  • equity research analysts: your job is to oversee investment portfolios for a group of companies in a particular industry. You can work for buy-side and sell-side firms to help them decide the securities to hold and sell.
  • treasury analysts: as a treasury analyst, you manage finances in various government agencies. You oversee investment income, cash flow and asset levels. You also advise on ways to improve financial health.
  • corporate development analysts: your job is to optimise business processes and enhance income from business operations. You assess operations and expenses and develop better strategies.

working as a finance analyst

Working as a finance analyst is an exciting role involving analysing investment portfolios and minimising risks. Let's explore finance analysts' specific duties, job outlook and work schedules.

top view of people working together
top view of people working together

education and skills

Some of the educational qualifications you require to become a finance analyst.

Qualifications include:

skills and competencies

Some of the qualities that will help you excel as a finance analyst include:

  • research skills: your job involves mining data from various sources for financial analysis. Research skills help you find historical data from company records and macroeconomic data from industry sources. With sufficient information, you can make predictions based on your data analysis
  • attention to detail: being detail-oriented helps you identify market trends and make accurate predictions. Attentiveness to detail is crucial for making insightful conclusions based on market changes.
  • analytical skills: as a finance analyst, you evaluate masses of data to draw accurate conclusions. You need analytical skills to ask the right questions, reach the correct conclusions and discern the best solutions for your clients.
  • maths skills: it is crucial to be good at maths and numbers since you handle complex calculations in financial modelling. Sometimes you use equations to complete data analysis. Maths skills also help you formulate financial models like charts and graphs.
  • communication skills: you need communication skills to explain complex financial jargon to clients and investors. Communication and people skills also help you maintain productive relationships with stakeholders.

FAQs about working as a finance analyst

Here are the most asked questions about working as a finance analyst:

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