Graduate Job Profile - Stock Broker

Stockbrokers handle investments on behalf of individuals, SMEs and large multinational organisations. Stockbrokers will either take instructions from their clients on which share to buy and sell or they will manage their client's investment completely. Trading is typically done by telephone or via the internet. Stockbrokers are responsible for regular reviews of the client's portfolio to monitor the performance. Stockbrokers rely on the work of Investment Analysts to provide accurate reports on the market and companies performance. Stockbrokers then use these reports to advise existing clients on what action to take. The hours are very long and the work environment is usually a very hectic involving extensive use of computers and telephones.

Graduate often go into trainee roles within a financial company and a degree in subjects such as economics, law or accountancy is often required. An understanding of how financial markets work is essential.

Because of the stressful nature of the job and the huge responsibility it entails financial companies have strict recruitment policies. These are designed to be tough involving a number of interviews, and psychometric and aptitude tests. Postgraduate qualifications on entry, such as an MSc or MBA, are also becoming commonplace.

To be a stockbroker you must be registered as an authorised person with the Financial Services Authority (FSA). This registration is earned by passing examinations approved by the FSA. You would also have continuous training to keep up to date with new procedures and regulations.

The majority of stockbrokers are based in London but opportunities exist in other large cities around the UK. Work is also available in investment banks or private banks. Many firms offer a fast track route to progression within the company and promotion could be to account manager or fund manager. Many experienced stockbrokers set up their own firm. Opportunities also exist abroad in major financial centres.

Graduates going into stockbroking can earn between £15,000 - £20,000 per year. With experienced stockbrokers can earn between £30,000 and £45,000. Some stockbrokers earn over £100,000 per year.

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