Banking Careers

Created by Henry Steele

By Henry Steele - April 16, 2017
Reading Time: 6 minutes
Reading Time: 6 minutes

The following article provides important information about a career in banking. You will learn what the different types of jobs in banking are, where these professionals work, their job duties, how to become various types of banking professionals, and more.

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What Bankers Do

Bankers are essential mediators for investors and for people who want to sell their investments. When a banker accepts funds from a customer, the money is invested in various debt and equity investments with a certain yield. Bankers also are responsible for checking what the credit risk is for customers who are trying to get a loan.

Bankers also are in charge of establishing good relationships with customers, and for planning and delivering sales strategies in banking investments.

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Bankers play a very important role in the economy because people use banks to deposit money and to establish a financial record and credit over time. It would take often years or decades for the typical person to save enough money to buy a home or a car, or to start a business. Banks provide consumers and businesses with loans so that business can be conducted. This helps both the individual, the company and also helps to circulate money in the entire economy.

Note that the activities of bankers will vary depending on if they are working retail, commercial or corporate banking.

A common type of banker is an investment banker, who connects businesses that is in need of money to finance their business or plans to expand, with potential investors who want to provide funding for a rate of return.

This process is known as underwriting, which is the major purpose of the typical investment bank.

Banker Job Duties

Bankers usually do some or all of these duties:

  • Help bank customers to reach their financial goals through the use of the bank’s products and services.
  • Safeguard customer assets and create positive cash flow through the issuing of loans.
  • Provide initial public offerings as well as mergers and acquisitions.
  • Obey Federal Reserve guidelines to ensure that customers are able to access funds without delay or interruption
  • Sell various financial products and investments to customers
  • Meet with corporate or personal clients, and listen to their needs and goals
  • May supervise loan officers and financial officers

Where Bankers Work

The type of bank in which you may work in the banking profession will depend upon whether you are working in retail, corporate or commercial banking. These different types of banking each have different sorts of banks in which you may work.

Some of the top cities where bankers tend to find the best and most numerous jobs are:

  • New York City
  • San Francisco
  • Los Angeles
  • Miami
  • Chicago
  • Boston
  • Washington, DC
  • Seattle
  • Omaha
  • Atlanta

How to Become a Banker

To work in banking, you will need to earn a bachelor’s degree in accounting or finance. It is very important to have classes in regulatory compliance and banking business practices. Also, you may get into a bachelor’s degree program in business administration that has a specialty in banking or financial management.

See Top 50 Online MBA Programs with No GMAT/Waiver Option.

Once you have a bachelor’s degree, you may want to try to get an internship in commercial or investment banking. Most large banks offer extensive investment banking training programs that will prepare you to work effectively with bank clients.

If you are going to become an investment banker, you have to get registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority or FINRA. This requires you to get a license and you will have to study for several very tough exams that require a high level of knowledge and studying in areas such as accounting economics, evaluation of assets, portfolio management and corporate finance.

See Top Online Finance MBA Programs

At this point, you may choose to earn an MBA in finance or banking so that you can learn more about advanced financial and banking concepts.

Banker Employment/Salaries

According to, bankers earn an average salary of $45,337 per year. However, an investment banker can make a lot more salary than this.

Starting salaries for investment bankers tend to range from $100,000 to $150,000 per year. reports that the national average salary for all investment bankers in the US was $100,675.

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In a related field, financial services sales agents earned a median salary of $102,510 as of 2013.

Regarding job demand, jobs in the area of securities, commodities and financial services overall will see at least 10% growth by 2024. As the global markets are increasing the numbers and types of investments, and baby boomers are retiring, there will be more demand for banker and investment banker services.

Job demand for bankers and investment bankers will be highest for those who have an MBA and more years of experience.

Banker Career Paths

Some of the other types of occupations you can work in with a background in banking include:

  • Financial analyst: They offer both financial and business guidance to private companies that must make important decisions on their investments. They are critical in assessing stock and bond performance as well as various other types of investments. Financial analysts can work as buy side or sell side analysts.
  • Budget analyst: These are tax and finance professionals who work with public and private companies to organize their finances properly. They may engage with various types of entities in the government as well as the business and academic worlds to help them to organize their money and finances more efficiently.
  • Financial manager: They are in charge of the complete financial health of the company or entity. They handle the organization and writing of complex financial reports and documents, provide advice to lead investment activities, and also devise financial strategies to advance the financial goals of the company.

Banker Education

To work in the banking profession, you should earn a bachelor’s degree in finance and/or accounting, or possibly in business administration. After you graduate, you then should get an internship with a banking institution so that you can if you choose to, become a banker or investment banker.

See also 10 Self Paced Online Business Colleges

Some bankers may wish to earn their MBA eventually so that they can work in upper management as a banker.

There are a number of popular Online MBA programs which can be earned from top accredited non-profit universities. To learn more about these programs choose your area of specialization:

Banker Specializations

With a degree in accounting or finance and working in the banking field, you may become a banker or investment banker, but there are other types of occupations you may specialize in:

  • Securities, commodities and financial services agent: They connect both buyers and sellers in various financial markets. These professionals largely work in the marketing and sale of securities to companies and individuals, and also provide advice to organizations that are in search of investors. These agents will typically deal with man different types of clients and products.
  • Brokers: They market commodities and securities to private clients. They provide advice to people on the types of investments that will work well for them and their financial goals. One of the most important aspects of this job is to find clients. They have to create a base of clients by calling lists of possible clients.
  • Investment banking sales agents and traders: They handle the buy and sell orders for various bonds, stocks and commodities. Usually, investment banks employ these types of workers. Some may also work for commercial banks and possibly hedge funds.
  • Floor brokers: They work on the floor of a stock exchange, which is a large space where the bulk of the trading is done. After the trader makes an order for a certain security, the floor broker must then perform negotiation of the price and conduct the sale.
  • Financial service sales agents: They serve as consultants on many types of financial, insurance, banking and securities and related services to both businesses and individuals.

Banker Training and Certifications

There are many excellent certifications that you can earn if you want to have a career in banking. Many of them are offered by the American Bankers Association, and include:

  • Certified Trust and Financial Advisor or CTFA
  • Certified Financial Marketing Professional or CFMP
  • Certified Regulatory Compliance Manager or CRCM
  • Certified Corporate Trust Specialist or CCTS
  • Certified IRA Services Professional or CISP
  • Certified AML and Fraud Professional or CAFP
  • Certified Securities Operations Professional or CSOP
  • Certified Retirement Services Professional or CRSP

With an advanced degree in finance and one or more of these certifications, you should be able to build an excellent banking career.


Henry Steele
Managing Editor
Henry is Managing Editor of He is a seasoned business professional who regularly consults with local business's throughout Southern California. Henry pursued his undergrad in Business and Economics at the University of San Diego and gained valuable life changing experience through a unique internship upon graduation.

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