The finance sector is a lucrative, dynamic, and essential component of any economy. If you have a knack for numbers, analysis, and are passionate about business, you may consider starting a career in this industry. In this blog post, we’re highlighting 10 entry-level jobs in finance, complete with descriptions, average wages (as of 2023), as well as benefits and drawbacks for each role.
1. Financial Analyst
Financial Analysts evaluate financial data, track economic trends, and make recommendations based on their findings. The average starting salary is around $57,000 per year.
Benefits: High visibility, broad exposure to business operations, and strong potential for career advancement.
Drawbacks: Long hours, high stress levels, and intense scrutiny on accuracy of reports.
2. Credit Analyst
Credit Analysts assess the creditworthiness of individuals or businesses applying for loans. The average starting salary is around $48,000 per year.
Benefits: Offers valuable experience in risk assessment, important in any future finance role.
Drawbacks: Stressful decision-making process, and limited creativity.
3. Junior Tax Associate
Junior Tax Associates help clients prepare their tax returns and understand tax regulations. The average starting salary is about $52,000 per year.
Benefits: Stable demand for tax services, and a great foundation for specializing in tax law or accounting.
Drawbacks: Tax season can be extremely busy and stressful. Keeping up with frequently changing tax laws can be challenging.
4. Financial Auditor
Financial Auditors review financial statements to ensure their accuracy. The average starting salary is around $55,000 per year.
Benefits: Exposure to a wide variety of industries and the potential for travel.
Drawbacks: High levels of responsibility and long hours during audit season.
5. Risk Analyst
Risk Analysts identify potential risks and losses for a business. The average starting salary is about $57,000 per year.
Benefits: Critical role for any business, which could lead to career advancement.
Drawbacks: High-pressure job, as substantial losses can result from mistakes.
6. Investment Banking Analyst
Investment Banking Analysts assist in the issuance of securities and aid clients in mergers and acquisitions. The average starting salary is approximately $85,000 per year.
Benefits: High salary potential and exposure to high-profile deals.
Drawbacks: Notoriously long hours, high stress, and a highly competitive environment.
7. Financial Planner
Financial Planners help individuals manage their finances and reach their financial goals. The average starting salary is about $50,000 per year.
Benefits: Personal satisfaction from helping clients and a good work-life balance.
Drawbacks: Requires excellent people skills, and success often depends on building a strong client base.
8. Mortgage Loan Officer
Mortgage Loan Officers help individuals and businesses secure loans from banking institutions. The average starting salary is around $45,000 per year.
Benefits: High earning potential due to commission-based income, and the satisfaction of helping people secure their homes.
Drawbacks: Uncertainty in income due to dependency on commission and market conditions.
9. Equity Research Analyst
Equity Research Analysts conduct research on companies and industries to aid in investment decisions. The average starting salary is around $80,000 per year.
Benefits: Exposure to equity markets and high-profile investment decisions.
Drawbacks: Long hours, especially during earnings seasons, and high pressure to produce accurate recommendations.
10. Insurance Underwriter
Insurance Underwriters assess risk to determine the terms of insurance coverage. The average starting salary is approximately $46,000 per year.
Benefits: Stable demand for underwriting skills and a regular work schedule.
Drawbacks: Job involves meticulous detail and can be quite stressful due to the need for precision.
While these roles may be your first step in the world of finance, they can also become stepping stones to other exciting opportunities in the field. Starting your finance career in these positions can help you gain the practical skills and knowledge to advance and specialize in your preferred niche. As with any job, consider your personal career goals, interest, work-life balance, and growth potential when choosing your path in finance.