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How Do I Become a Trading Analyst?

Bobby R. Goldsmith
Bobby R. Goldsmith

To become a trading analyst for a bank, investment firm, or trading broker, you must follow a specific educational and occupational path. You will need to obtain at least a bachelor's degree in finance or business, though a master's degree may be more helpful. You should then obtain either an internship or an entry level position with a brokerage house or an independent financial analysis firm. From here, you can successfully work your way into a position to become a trading analyst, either with the original firm that hired you or with another firm that has an open position. It takes both an extensive education and years of experience to do this.

The first step to become a trading analyst is acquiring the proper education. Generally, earning a bachelor's degree in either finance or business meets the basic requirements of an entry level research or assistant position at most investment brokerage companies, but you should keep in mind that there is a great deal of competition for these positions. The more education and the more hands-on experience you have, the better your chances of obtaining one.

Man with hands on his hips
Man with hands on his hips

Obtaining a bachelor's degree in finance or business requires that you complete roughly 60 to 80 credit hours of lower division coursework in a variety of general education subjects. These include language, social sciences, math, natural sciences, and various electives. Lower division coursework also includes introductory classes on the topic of your major, such as introductory courses in financial planning, economics, and business administration.

Upper division coursework focuses primarily on more advanced topics in your major. There are many different points of focus, and yours may depend upon which type of trading analyst you want to become, the area of finance in which you want to work, and whether you want to work in a freelance capacity. During the final year of your bachelor's degree program, you may find it helpful to acquire an internship with a local financial planner or investment bank to obtain hands-on experience in the financial field.

Once you complete your bachelor's degree program, the next step to become a trading analyst is to find a position at a financial investment institution where you would like to work. Generally, you will need several years of experience in order to become a trading analyst. You can, however, acquire this experience as a financial data analyst, a researcher, or as an assistant to an analyst or an executive.

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