Financial-Analyst

Best Financial Analysis Courses ranked by Bankers (2022)

In Finance Courses & Certifications by Gaurav SharmaUpdated On:

“Financial Analyst” is as broad a term as you can come across in finance. A financial analyst can be someone building projections for the next quarter for a car manufacturer to someone analysing the returns on investment grade emerging market debt. Its pretty broad terminology.

For the most part though, financial analysts have to deal with numbers that are important to companies. So, the one skillset that all financial analysts need to have is the ability to understand, analyse and present those numbers in a format that is digestible by their target audience. That target audience can be management, clients, shareholders, regulators or any other stakeholders.

What to expect from a Financial Analysis Course?

In order to make it as a financial analyst, you need desk-ready skills. Some of these skills may be acquired on the job but employers would want you to demonstrate your ability to be a good financial analyst beforehand. After all, there are plenty of candidates out there. Essentially, you are looking for three things:

  • CV Value/ Personal Branding to get shortlisted
  • Knowledge to ace the selection process
  • Relevant desk-ready skills to hit the ground running and proving you can add value from Day 1

You not only need to demonstrate the skills, but you also need to add value to your CV. Majoring in Finance, Business or accounting will help, but you need some “desk-ready” skills which is what these courses will provide you. These courses are also offered by the world’s top universities or training providers which will make your CV stand out.


1. Certified Financial Modeling & Valuation Analyst (FMVA) from CFI

Why take the FMVA?

  1. The FMVA is the premiere certification for financial analysts worldwide. It provides you with the CV value that you need to get a shortlist, the knowledge you need to clear the interviews and the desk ready skills to hit the ground running on your first day on the job. 
  2. The modular nature of the coursework is another unique feature. You have a bunch of optional prep courses that you can take base don your skill level. You can skip these if you already have a good grasp on those topics, thus saving  you a lot of time. The same is true for the elective courses where you only take what you need. 
  3. For example, the elective courses include topics like startup/ eCommerce modeling, LBO modelling, M&A modelling, renewable energy modeling, reals estate modeling etc. You can pick and choose the ones you want to count towards your FMVA certification.
  4. Additionally, there are some mandatory topics that each financial analyst has to be aware of anyway like business modeling, cash flow analysis, scenario and sensitivity analysis, dashboard and data visualisation etc. Everything you need as a financial analyst is in here and it is great.
  5. The quality of the course material is excellent and it is delivered by professionals with years of experience in the field. The added brand value of the FMVA from the Corporate Finance Institute is something that anyone would want on their Resumes, especially in this tough market environment.

Summary

Duration120-200 hours
FormatFully online, on-demand
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2. Finance & Quantitative Modeling for Analysts Specialization from Wharton Online

Why take this course?

  1. Wharton is one of the best brands you can get on your CV. It’s a top-rated business school and this course oozes the same quality that the financial services industry has come to expect of them. You learn from the top Wharton professors in Statistics, Finance and Accounting.
  2. This course has been designed for Financial analysts, as you can judge from the title. In fact, there is another very similar course like this, but I chose this one to put on this list because of that analyst focus. The module on financial acumen and corporate finance should be helpful to all analysts. There is enough depth provided in the area of quantitative modeling to suit most financial analysts. 
  3. The rest of the course focuses on modelling, including handling spreadsheets. As someone who has worked in finance for a long time, I can tell you that spreadsheets become a part of your life. The better you are at handling them, the easier your life will be and the more you can impress your bosses. It’s an essential skill for financial analyst and this course provides a nice primer.

Summary

Duration25 hours
FormatFully online, on-demand
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3. Online Professional Certificate in Corporate Finance from NYIF

Why take this course?

  1. If you are looking for a more advanced course for financial analysis, this is it. This course is better suited for investment/ corporate bankers, equity and debt analysts, traders and others who require a more advanced understanding of financial analysis. However, it will also prove indispensable to corporate financial analysts because of the topic overage which we discuss next.
  2. The course covers everything you need as a financial analyst – starting with some basic accounting, business and project valuation, credit analysis, corporate finance, M&A, treasury management and so on. The topics are covered in sufficient detail and you will learn everything you need to as a financial analyst. This a more comprehensive and meaty course than others on this list. 
  3. NYIF is another solid brand to have on your CV. They have been teaching bankers, traders, financial analysts and even regulators for almost a century now. If you need a more advanced course that covers financial analysis, then this is it. I would also recommend this for professionals looking for a mid-career transition into finance.

Summary

Duration60 hours
FormatFully online, on-demand
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4. The Complete Financial Analyst Course at Udemy

Why take this course?

  1. The best course if you are an absolute beginner and want to focus mostly on the spreadsheet and accounting side of things. This course is not meant for financial analysts at banks (pick one of the other ones in this list for that) but rather for financial analysts involved in financial planning, budgeting, reporting and such roles which focus on the accounting side of things.
  2. The course does present a lot of information relevant to financial analysts ranging from accounting basics and Excel magic to managing the finances, budgets and cash flows of companies. Most of what you need to know to hit the ground running or prepare for an analyst interview seems to be covered here. 
  3. The course quality is solid, and the concepts are well explained with the understand that the target audience is new to all these concepts. If you already know Excel and finance/ accounting basics, you would be better served with one of the more advanced courses featured above.

Summary

 

Duration20 hours
FormatFully online, on-demand
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About the Author

Gaurav Sharma

Gaurav started his finance career as an intern in Citi’s Institutional Clients Group in 2009, eventually ending up as an Associate Director at Standard Chartered Bank’s Corporate & Institutional Banking division a few years later. By 2016, he was an independent consultant helping FinTech start-ups in London with product development and launch. Gaurav also helps banks with their digital banking initiatives and advises PE & VC firms with investments in the financial services and FinTech sectors. Gaurav writes on topics ranging from EU banking regulations and tradional finance to Blockchain startups and the future of banking itself! He has an Engineering degree in Computer Science and an MBA with a double major in Finance and Marketing. He is also a Certified Financial Risk Manager.