Becoming a Fund Manager
If you are new to the world of fund management, you probably know that it takes the collective knowledge of a number of people in order for an investment strategy to be a solid one. Fund managers are typically high-level business executives who are paid handsomely for their services, but most of them are also highly trained financial experts with a wide range of expertise and experience. Many fund managers work on Wall Street, where they consult with large investment firms to create the strategies that will yield the best possible returns for their clients. They are responsible for the day-to-day management and investment of funds as well as ensuring that all laws and regulations are followed by individual investors and their companies. As a manager, your primary focus will likely be on the investments of other investors, although you may also have responsibility for other areas such as asset protection and risk management. However, if you want to take your career to the next level, fund management positions may be the right fit for you.
The skills required to succeed in fund management include financial management, money management, analytical skills, and the ability to communicate effectively and understand complex financial systems. Since many investors choose to invest in managed funds, they must be able to devise and implement investment strategies that will yield the greatest return for the investors as well as help ensure that other investors are profiting from their investment funds. Most fund managers are Ivy League graduate students with a strong background in finance, mathematics, and business. While the job outlook for these positions may not be good, they are certainly the best available in the investment world.
Analysts, on the other hand, are typically business professionals who serve as independent contractors for investment firms. Most analyst positions report directly to a CEO or the CFO. Their tasks include developing a robust portfolio of assets for the firm, analyzing various financial data, and developing a balanced portfolio of stocks, derivatives, mutual funds, and so forth. Most analysts also handle internal financial documents and compile statistics regarding the firm’s performance. A few analysts work solely as consultants to the fund managers.
If you want to work at a boutique investment management company, you will likely need a MBA or some sort of investment management certification course. These programs focus on teaching the skills necessary for successful fund managers. They often require the students to demonstrate prior success in finance, investments, and related fields such as insurance and public accounting. Many times, students will have to conduct a portfolio analysis or write an essay on a given topic in order to qualify for admission into a program.
Becoming an active fund manager does come with a certain level of responsibility that comes with the profession. Active fund managers are expected to be strategic thinkers and visionaries. This means that they should possess strong leadership skills and be capable of being proactive in dealing with unexpected problems. Often, fund managers with strong professional credentials and a track record of outperforming the market come highly recommended when it comes to filling various positions.
While there are plenty of jobs available in the world of finance and accounting, there are limited openings for certified financial analysts and proactive fund managers. To be competitive, professional credentials and analytical skill are required. In addition, these positions are generally well-paid and lead to a high level of job satisfaction.