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Summer 2014
Vol. 58, Number 2
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Financial specialists: Working with money

We need money in nearly all aspects of our lives: to buy things, to eliminate debt, and to invest in the future. But we also need financial know-how to manage our money successfully.

With a career as a financial specialist, you could help clients achieve their life goals. "To be able to tell people that they can do the things they want to do—buy a house or send their child to college or retire early—is very rewarding," says financial planner Melissa Motz of Harleysville, Pennsylvania. "It's nice to be a part of that."

Financial specialists provide advice about money in lots of ways. For example, they may manage investments for clients, extend loans, or check financial statements for accuracy. Some, like Motz, interact directly with clients; others work to ensure that the institutions using money are run properly.

And from Wall Street to Main Street, more than 1 million job openings are expected for financial specialists who have the right skills and training, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Some of these openings are expected to arise from the need to replace workers who are leaving their occupation permanently.

This article gives an overview of financial specialists. The first section describes recent changes to their work, highlights the occupations, and presents employment and wage data. The second section describes the pros and cons of the work. And the third section covers the skills and other requirements needed to enter these occupations. Sources for more information are listed at the end of the article.

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U.S. Department of Labor
Bureau of Labor Statistics

Last Updated: June 16, 2014