Investment professionals in pursuit of financial manager careers have a host of possibilities from which to choose. Depending on the area of expertise, there are many different types of financial management positions. The spotlight position in the finance industry is a portfolio manager, and this could be for a mutual fund, a hedge fund or a pension fund, among others. No one person makes all of the decisions in an investment management firm, and as a result, there typically are teams of professionals supporting a key investment professional. This leads to additional financial manager careers that can be found.
Seeking out financial manager careers typically is reserved for the most highly educated business professionals. An advanced degree in business, economics or finance usually is required. These investment professionals are hired by investors to preserve and grow wealth through up-and-down market and economic cycles, and as a result, they must be highly qualified to make sophisticated investment decisions surrounding security selection and investment strategies.
Mutual funds are among the most common investment management firms in developed economies around the world. Subsequently, there are a host of financial manager careers that can be sought within a mutual fund firm. For instance, someone who is highly trained in mathematics might consider a mutual fund with a quantitative investment strategy. This is a form of investment that relies heavily on mathematical equations to make investment selections.
Pension funds are another area where financial manager careers can be obtained. The opportunities range from the most senior position as a chief financial officer or an executive director to other, more entry-level jobs that include the professional as part of the investment team. Financial manager careers in the pension fund industry are not autonomous positions, because the retirement of pension members is at stake. This presents another layer of opportunities, because most public pension funds also have a board of directors comprised of a team of investment professionals who have influence on the investment decisions that are made at the fund.
The hedge fund industry provides perhaps the most sophisticated of financial manager careers. This is because there are complex trading strategies that are used by this industry in an attempt to generate the highest returns of all for investors. Large hedge funds often oversee multiple investment portfolios and have teams dedicated to each individual fund. Careers in this industry tend to be short because of burnout caused by the fact that there are such high expectations.