Stock brokers are the professionals who execute the ‘buy’ and ‘sell’ orders of shares and securities, given by the investors, who are their clients. They have the latest and precise information about the bonds and stocks and their task is to find those people who will carry out the buy and sell transactions of the shares and the securities. The challenge for every budding stock broker is to increase the number of clients by providing them good service and proper guidance on investments in the stock market. Though this profession pays well, there is a lot of struggle involved in the initial stages of the business. There are many stock brokers who work in brokerage firms, investment firms and banks.
We all know that the income of a stock brokers is in the form of the brokerage which they receive after every transaction made in the stock market. Apart from executing the orders given by the clients, stock brokers also guide them about the various investment strategies, which can fetch them great returns in the market. They are completely aware of the major as well as the minor financial news, trends and highs and lows in the market due to proper stock research and they revise their strategies as per the prevailing conditions. They keep an eye on the international stock markets along with the stock market of their country, as the market of a country can influence the trends of the other. They inform the investors about the various risks and sudden changes and fluctuations in the market. Stock brokers are known to cater to a variety of clients – retail or local clients, corporate clients and also the institutional clients.
Stock brokers give all the details of the rules and regulations of the market to their clients. They sign an agreement with the client in accordance with the rules and regulations of the stock exchange. They express their opinions about the price at which one can buy the shares of a particular company, based on the data provided by the technical analysts of the stock market.
Portfolio management and reviewing is one of the most important feature of the job description. Stock brokers suggest the clients to include certain shares in their portfolio, by considering their risk taking abilities. For a high net worth individual, who is an old player of the stock market, aggressive and volatile stocks may be suggested to maximize the profits. However, in the case of a retail or small investor, defensive stocks, that are known to outperform the market, are recommended. The portfolio management of clients is done considering their investment time horizon. Generally, experienced stock brokers suggest their clients to have a diversified portfolio to minimize the risk of losing a huge capital during the phase of a stock market crash. Many stock brokers are agents of mutual fund companies and do the job of explaining the advantages of various mutual funds in the market.
Educational Qualifications and Skills
Stock brokers, should ideally have a bachelor’s or master’s degree in finance or accounting. A degree in business management with finance as the specialization, would prove to be very useful. Stock brokers should have the requisite licenses and membership and agreement with the stock exchange and are expected to follow all the rules of the stock exchange.
The skills required to succeed as a stock broker are numerical ability, logical thinking ability, excellent communication and interpersonal skills, attentiveness, interest in the happenings in the financial world, profound knowledge of the market and decision-making abilities. In the initial stages of their careers, stock brokers should be ready to work for long hours to win the investor confidence.
According to various surveys, the median salary of stock brokers is around USD 70,000 a year. The average annual salary is pegged at USD 90,000, while there are many experienced brokers earning more than USD 100,000.
The job description of a stock broker suggests that there is a great opportunity for deserving candidates to make a good career in this field. However, people interested in pursuing this profession should be ready to learn new things and work hard for success.