Finance Majors: Salary and Career Facts

Find out about the types of jobs you could pursue in finance. Read on to learn more about career options along with salary and job outlook information. Schools offering Finance degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Can I Do With a Finance Degree?

With a degree in finance, you can explore a variety of careers such as a stockbroker, insurance agent, financial agent, financial advisor or analysts, investment banker or loan officer. Graduates of these degrees will gain valuable knowledge in financial management and be able to educate others on how to manage and handle business and personal financial matters.

This article gives information on all six careers, and the following chart highlights three.

Insurance Sales Agent Personal Financial Advisor Loan Officer
Degree Required High school, but a bachelor's can help your career Bachelor's Bachelor's
Key Responsibilities Calling potential clients, analyzing clients' policies to see if changes are needed, explaining policies, helping with claims Advising clients about investments, taxes and other financial matters, researching investments, meeting with clients Meeting with loan applicants, explaining loan types, reviewing clients' finances
Licensure Required Required Required for mortgage loan officers
Job Growth (2014-24) 9% (as fast as average)* 30% (much faster than average)* 8% (as fast as average)*
Median Salary (May 2015) $48,200* $89,160* $63,430*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Can I Earn a Bachelor's Degree in Finance?

Bachelor of Science (BS) degrees in finance can be found at a number of institutions. Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree programs also offer a major in finance. The difference between the two programs is the focus--many BBA programs focus on business and communication, while BS programs focus on financial analysis.

Many courses you'll take in a bachelor's degree program allow you to focus your study in the direction you want, whether it is corporate finance or entrepreneurship. Some of the topics you'll encounter during your finance degree program include ethical decisions, commercial bank management, investment analysis, hedge funds, real estate and international economics. Some colleges offer online courses and programs in finance.

What Careers Can I Consider?

A bachelor's degree will prepare you for many different careers, such as stock brokerage, insurance sales, financial advising, financial analysis investment banking or loan officering. Stockbrokers help people strategize their investment portfolios. Insurance sales professionals sell policies of all kinds. In this role, you'd use your finance training to determine the most appropriate coverage, deductibles and premiums for each policyholder.

Personal financial advisors help people make all sorts of decisions on how to invest their money, whether it be to purchase a home, save for retirement or buy stock. Financial analysts work for large businesses, and they help influence management decisions on how resources should be spent. If you choose to become an investment banker, you'll be in charge of linking businesses with investors. As a loan officer, you'd work with businesses and individuals who lack the capital needed for various investments.

What Kind of Money Can I Make?

The following is a chart of the median yearly salaries for a number of positions that can be attained with a degree in finance.

PositionSalary
Stockbroker $51,492 (2016)**
Insurance Sales Agent $48,200 (2015)*
Financial Advisor $89,160 (2015)*
Financial Analyst $80,310 (2015)*
Investment Banker $89,265 (2016)**
Loan Officer $63,430 (2015)*

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Bank tellers handle a variety of tasks in a local bank. They are involved in depositing money or cashing checks for bank customers. They should have good customer service skills and possess a high school diploma. Some banks offer on-the-job training.

Budget analysts are trained to assist organizations or companies with their financial needs. They must have analytical skills to review and examine institutional spending, and they should have good written communications skills to prepare budget reports for their companies. Budget analysts work in many different environments that may include public or private companies. A bachelor's degree is necessary to enter this profession.

Financial examiners make sure companies are in compliance with required statutes that oversee financial institutions and transactions. They need to have a keen eye for reviewing balance sheets and determining the risk levels of a loan. Financial examiners may work for the state or federal government, as well as insurance and other financial institutions. Financial examiners often need to hold a bachelor's degree with some accounting courses to enter the profession.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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