How do I become a Financial Analyst in Canada?

It seems every job I look for called Financial Analyst requires CMA, CGA, CA. I don’t want to do accounting, I want to do financial analysis, that is why I signed up for the CFA charter.

What would I need to learn, obtain, besides accounting designations to become a financial analyst in Canada? Also, have you guys noticed how financial analysis roles don’t require or ask for the Chartered Financial Analyst designation?

Huh. you are now the 2nd guy who said something like this now. There was this 1 guy before who made a big stink about how useless the CFA was in Canada and how there were like 2 jobs that said CFA on it.

Unless you were that guy lol

I forgot his name actually.

But since Canada has one of the highest concentrations of CFA charterholders, I’m going to say it’s probably not true

Financial Analyst in Canada is not an investment job its targeted more towards accounting. For the CFA you want to be looking more for roles such as equity analyst or associate. Financial analyst has nothing to do with the CFA or investments.

BTW, unless you went to a top school and got top grades, goodluck getting an equity analyst gig in Canada. I had neither and compared to others I know I feel lucky getting a gig at a actuarial consultant firm on the investment team.


To the OP. You’re looking for positions called: portfolio analyst, investment analyst, associate, equity/FI analyst etc. "financial analyst’ is a very broadly used job title used across various industries.

Moreover, just type CFA into your job search engine of choice (i.e. Indeed) and see what you get.

As well, just like middleClass said, you have an uphill battle. I don’t know what experience you have but being a Level 1 Candidate means nothing, and even being a charterholder isn’t impressive as we have so many of them in Canada. Focus on networking and get your foot into the door of an investment firm; even if the role is not exactly what you’re looking for. Good Luck.

What makes you think that Financial Analyst (or similar job) is that great? Seems like everyone wants to do this but don’t really know what the job is actually like.

Great, thanks for the help guys (mostly), and for claryfying what a financial analyst is in Canada. And ya I was just looking where to start to do what the CFA teaches, because I love equities and all that stuff.

I just assumed a financial analyst does what the CFA teaches minus the accounting part.

ohai - From what I’ve read I’m interested in it because its technical and its a lot of pattern searching, explaining, finding discrepancies in data. I love that shit. Im not after glamour like say with investment banking

I’ll tell you something, you better learn to love accounting more than your wife if you want to succeed. Part of my job involves IR and I see that it matters a lot to analysts and investors. Important weight is put on accounting measures like EPS, EBITDA, CFO, etc.

It’s looking like it :(. It’s hard pill for me to swallow

^ That should not come as a surprise. You say you want to practice what the CFA teaches… but it teaches a lot of accounting for a reason. You also said you love equities, but what are equities without the accounting behind them?

So you don’t like accounting and you are “interested in it because its technical and its a lot of pattern searching, explaining, finding discrepancies in data.” Sounds like you should be looking for jobs that involve a lot more technical analysis rather than fundamental analysis.

I just don’t know where to start. What keywords would I use in a job search?

A few thoughts. As you might have guessed from my username, I’m originally from Canada but chose to go to school and work in the US. I thought about going back to work in Canada, but here is a few things to consider about Financial Analyst roles.

  • they’re generally headquarters type jobs. Go search on hp’s (or mcdonalds, or any big non-Canadian company) website and search for financial analyst in Canada vs. the US and note the difference in number of openings. Canada has a lot fewer of these jobs as a function of being a smaller market and relatively few companies HQ’d there vs. the US. Nothing you can do about that.

  • I used to work in public accounting and in a couple companies I worked with, they are combining accounting and FA roles into a role sometimes called “accounting analyst”. I guess they figure that they might as well combine things since FA’s usually manipulate accounting information.

You sound a bit lost to me. I think you really need to do some research and find out what you REALLY want to do. Only then are job searches and applications worth your time.

hmmm… well i know what i want to do. i just thought it was called financial analysis. but it seems if accounting is combined into FA roles in Canada due to the smaller industry, then i got the job title wrong.

what I want to do is company valuations and managed investments. granted, company valuations require accounting knowledge, which im not against, i scored well in the accounting section, but i never imagined that financial analyst jobs in canada would require secondary, hardcore accounting degrees, i thought the CFA would be enough.

so then, i know what im left with. im left with wanting to do company valuations with little focus on accounting, and more focus on analysis. but what are those positions in Canada called…?

statusone, go to You can explore some careers and read the descriptions.

I’m drawing a blank, I don’t know how you could perform valuations with little focus on accounting. I don’t think the two can live without another according to my little knowledge and experience.

Are you sure you want to value companies? Maybe you’d like a job in the middle office or pension funds administration, i.e. calculating NAV, P&L, etc.

Hey tahi, thanks for the link. Yeah, I think maybe I am thinking of the wrong job title… maybe I’m confused as to what an analyst does. I will go through that site and maybe that will help me in my own job search. What you said sounds right; the last part about doing calculations… Is that middle office?

I have to research this now. Thanks for the tip!

Update - Wow, CSI is a hell of a resource. I found out what I want to do is in the Institutional/Corporate sector. All those things interest me and the website provides me with a whole new set of keywords :smiley: . Awesome, you’re the best, Tahi.

Where does financial analyst fall on that map? Out of curiosity.

It’s under research as research analyst.

I feel like your getting confused. Basically your descprition of company valuation, determining undervalued stocks and what to buy matches buy side analyst, research analyst, equity analyst.

You keep bringing up financial analyst and they do not do that. No investment firm in Canada has a financial analyst that determines what stocks to buy.

BTW buy side analyst, equity analysts, do require perhaps greater than basic knowledge in Accounting but lets not get confused as a buy side analyst your analyzing the financial statement not creating them. Accountants create them.

If you can handle the accounting sections in the CFA, you should be fine. Your worry should be how the f to get in.

Ya ya, Tahi and Tan Yeezy explained it well to me. I THOUGHT it was called Financial Analyst. It’s not. It’s equity analyst. That’s what I’m looking at.

So I wouldn’t be interested in Financial Analysis because you need CGA, CMA, or CA to get into it, and I had the wrong impression of it anyways. Equity analysis is where I want to be. I have no problem with doing accoutning work, I think it’s rather easy, I just don’t want to be stuck studying for accounting degrees and punching in numbers to create financial statements.

The only reason I brought up last time, was out of curiosity because I wanted to know where it would fit in on that CSI career map :wink:

This is an old thread but it actually come up in my Google search of all things! Anyway, this might be helpful for future readers . It also links to career map like CSI although kind of different since no focus on retail.

If you’re into company valuations and financial modeling then there can be a few jobs actually: equity research, IB, corp dev, and sometimes FP&A. But yeh the term “financial analyst” is actually not really used in corporate finance type jobs, at leas not ones that relate to valuation.