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Financial analysts study financial data in order to make an assessment on the financial state of an organisation. They may do this on behalf of an organisation which wishes to self-assess or may focus their research on another company in which their client has an interest. Financial analysts also report on the state of different markets and economies and industry sectors. Their advice is often used by managers in internal strategic decision making but also in buying and selling to determine market prices. They may also be asked to report on the risk and feasibility of certain business deals.
Gaining employment as a financial analyst is often very competitive and the work itself can involve long hours and strict deadlines. However, this is a profession which is well paid and where opportunity to progress is good. Employment opportunities exist with banks, investment and insurance companies and in specialist consultancies. Post-graduate qualifications are often required though an alternative path of entry is through the graduate programs offered by large organisations in which extensive training is provided.