Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents: Salary, career path, job outlook, education and more
- Education Required
- Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents generally must have a bachelors degree to get an entry-level job. Courses in business, finance, accounting, or economics are important, especially for larger firms. Many firms hire summer interns before their last year of college, and those who are most successful are offered full-time jobs after they graduate.
- Training Required
- Most employers provide intensive on-the-job training, teaching employees the specifics of the job, such as the products and services offered. Trainees in large firms may receive technical instruction in securities analysis and selling strategies. Firms often rotate their trainees among various departments to give them a broad understanding of the securities business.
- Job Outlook
The projected percent change in employment from 2016 to 2026: 6% (As fast as average)
(The average growth rate for all occupations is 7 percent.)
- Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents usually advance to senior positions in a firm by accumulating a greater number of accounts. Although beginners often service the accounts of individual investors, they may eventually service large institutional accounts, such as those of banks and retirement funds. Getting an MBA may also help advancement opportunities.
- Brokers and investment bankers must register as representatives of their firm with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). To obtain the license, potential agents must pass a series of exams.
- Median pay: How much do Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents make?
- $67,310 Annual Salary
- $32.36 per hour
Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents connect buyers and sellers in financial markets. They sell securities to individuals, advise companies in search of investors, and conduct trades.
What do Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents do?
Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents typically do the following:
- Contact prospective clients to present information and explain available services
- Offer advice on the purchase or sale of particular securities
- Buy and sell securities, such as stocks and bonds
- Buy and sell commodities, such as corn, oil, and gold
- Monitor financial markets and the performance of individual securities
- Analyze company finances to provide recommendations for public offerings, mergers, and acquisitions
- Evaluate cost and revenue of agreements
Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents deal with a wide range of products and clients. Agents spend much of the day interacting with people, whether selling stock to an individual or discussing the status of a merger deal with a company executive. The work is usually stressful because agents deal with large amounts of money and have time constraints.
A security or commodity can be traded in two ways: electronically or in an auction-style setting on the floor of an exchange market. Markets such as the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation system (NASDAQ) use vast computer networks rather than human traders to match buyers and sellers. Others, such as the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), rely on floor brokers to complete transactions.
The following are examples of types of securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents:
Careers for Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents
- Account executives, securities and investments
- Commodities brokers
- Commodities traders
- Commodity traders
- Equity traders
- Financial services sales agents
- Floor brokers
- Investment advisors
- Investment bankers
- Investment banking sales agents and traders
- Municipal bond traders
- Mutual fund sales agents
- Registered representatives
- Sales workers
- Securities traders
- Stock brokers
- Stock traders