Quantitative Analyst Career Guide
Last Reviewed/Updated: September 17, 2019
Quantitative Analysts are responsible for the development of complex models that utilize Mathematics and Statistics to identify risks, determine the value of investments, and determine pricing for different products and services.
Quantitative Analyst Careers
Professionals in this line of work can also utilize their skills in data analysis and statistics to develop software capable for analyzing trends for potential profit or loss.
Degrees for Quantitative Analyst Career
The type of career you are searching for may dictate the type of degree that you need to become a part of it. Many students that are considering entry into this career field begin with degree programs focusing on Applied Statistics, Calculus, or Engineering.
Graduate Level Degree
A large majority of open positions seeking Quantitative Analysts require a minimum of a Ph.D. in a relevant field, along with some experience in the field of Data Science or Statistics. If you are beginning your educational journey, you can consider a Masters in Data Science or Masters in Applied Statistics as a gateway for learning in this field.
Many current Quantitative Analysts are responsible for the development of complex models that can be used to gather and interpret data regarding finances and investments within organizations. This type of skill may require advanced learning in data analytics, which is part of the Data Science curriculum overall.
Continuing education into Statistics, Calculus, or Engineering at the Ph.D. level can help you obtain careers in this in-demand field.
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Online Degrees for Quantitative Analyst Career
The field of education as it stands today is increasingly inviting even to the most busy professional. Regardless of your current obligations, there are online degree programs that can provide you with the opportunity for advanced training needed to obtain careers in this incredible field.
M.S. in Data Science
Online Masters in Data Science programs can help you prepare for a diverse experience at higher degree levels and teach you skills that can aid in your development of financial models and programs throughout your career. Many different schools throughout the U.S. offer degree programs in the online environment, some of which may even be located with your state.
Doctor of Data Science
Since a large portion of QA careers require that you engage in at least a Ph.D. or Doctorate in Data Science program to be considered for open positions, you are encouraged to explore online options for these programs as well. Many different universities may be offering both master's and doctoral level programs for students with higher ambitions for their learning experience.
Online Ph.D. programs in Applied Statistics or Data Science could be great opportunities for you to engaging in more advanced learning experiences prior to entering into analyst positions in your future.
What do Quantitative Analysts do?
Quantitative Analysts can be employed with organizations that are focused on financial investments, banking, or even with businesses that sell insurance and consulting services. Your roles within each organization can present different types of projects and expectations, but within a general skill set that you can develop through collegiate degree programs.
Risk Modeling Research
When employed for the purpose of developing new models related to pricing or risks, you may begin your project by researching and analyzing market trends in order to establish a baseline for your work. This can include utilizing statistics to make basic assumptions about different types of trends for further software development.
Analytical Modeling Software
You may also be responsible for the development of new models and analytical software for use within your company. This can be for different purposes such as for loan prices, risk modeling, or even machine learning.
A major component of statistical positions may also include creating programs or elements that can review and analyze your results for accuracy. This can include developing software that utilize currently statistical patterns and algorithms to identify inconsistencies in your data.
While working as a Quantitative Analyst, you might work as part of a team of experts that can include engineers, Mathematicians, and other statistical professionals responsible for coordinating plans and project execution from start to finish.
The final stage of analysis in this field can include providing results from a formal analysis in a way that makes sense to other members of the organization. Some organizations may require the use of graphs, reports, or even organized meetings as a way to transfer the information from analysis to the planning team.
Salary and Pay for Quantitative Analysts
If you are interested in pursuing a career as a Quantitative Analyst, you can take part in degree programs that provide formal training on skills demanded in this field. Your investment into your education can lead you into profitable careers that may currently be in demand.
Quantitative Analysts can be important parts of financial organizations interested in optimizing their risk prevention software or analyzing their financial decisions prior to committing to them. Your role within your organization can further define the amount of money that you earn yearly at your job.
Our team of education research experts has pulled together some information pertaining to the salaries of real-world professionals current employed by organizations and businesses all over the country. The list of salaries below are based on the actual average incomes for analysts working in the field.
- Financial Analysts: $85,660 on average per year (BLS).
- Statistician: $88,190 on average per year (BLS).
- Operations Research Analysts: $83,390 on average per year (BLS).
Recommended Courses for Quantitative Analysts
Any professional currently working in the field of Quantitative Analysis can tell you that this career may require many different skills and an abundance of educational training. The course work that you engage with throughout your undergraduate and graduate degree programs can help mold you into a professional capable of working with complex statistical and computer programs.
One of the most important courses that you can take to help prepare for this career field is Computer Programming. Current employees in the field may commonly work with computer systems and different types of programming languages, making it necessary to be well-versed in these areas.
Courses in Computer Programming can teach you more about common languages such as C++, Python, or R. Each of these may be major components in your everyday work, making your familiarity with them vital to your success.
On the other end of the spectrum, students should engage in courses that include topics in Advanced and Applied Statistics. The software and models that can be created while working in this field can utilize formulas and algorithms found within statistics, making it necessary for you to know all that you can in these subject areas.
While you are researching different degree programs for Quantitative Analysis, you might find that courses in Stochastic Calculus and Quantitative Finance are common, since they are also related to some of the common duties performed during your career. Engagement in these classes can allow you to practice working with different formulas and equations for better expertise in the field.
Essential Quantitative Analyst Software Programs
The field of Quantitative Analysis is extremely varied in terms of software use and applications. Different businesses may use different tools for the completion of their daily duties, while others may pull from a small pool of software for you to be familiar with.
It is advised that new prospects to this field become comfortable using popular software such as the Statistical Analysis System (SAS) and STATA. Some organizations can also utilize the Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS), which is geared more towards uses that include the need for descriptive statistics and reports.
The more you learn about different QA software, the more attractive you can be as a candidate for open positions in large-scale organizations. There are currently many different online certification programs available for students that want to become certified users of different types of statistical programs that can be located through a quick internet search.
Quantitative Analyst Organizations to Know
As you progress through your degree program, our team encourages you to expand you horizons by joining one or more professional organizations seeking to further advance your field. There are multiple organizations that are focused specifically on Quantitative Analysts and their career goals, as well as smaller organizations for Risk Management and Financial Analysis.
One of the most popular professional organizations for you to consider currently is the American Society for Quantitative Analysts. This organization can provide you with endless resources regarding the history and innovation of your field, as well as introduce you to other professionals working in your same line of work.
New professionals in the field can also participate in gatherings and public events focused around advancing the technologies and models used in the field. These can be great opportunities to learn more about what type of research is being conducted for positive change and meet face-to-face with others with like interests.
If you are searching for a professional organization that can expand your networking beyond what is available in the U.S., you can consider joining the International Association for Quantitative Finance. This type of organization can enlighten you to new ideas and innovations upcoming in the field, as well as provide you with regular updates on foreign and domestic financial systems.