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How to become an investment broker

Becoming an investment broker is mostly about registration and hooking up with a brokerage house. The rest of the things required - as in tools, data feeds, clients and trading accounts usually come through the brokerage. One has to focus on specific types of money investments or investment solutions. Then, there's also a choice between becoming a full-service broker and a discount broker. This article provides a guide to becoming an investment broker.

Collect information

The first thing to do is to start learning about all the things that need to be done to be officially qualified to work as an investment broker. This means visiting the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority website and reading everything relevant. They provide a whole lot of information for prospective brokers and find out what sort of rules and regulations different types of investment brokers have to follow.

FINRA Registration

Step two is getting registered with FINRA. This involves filling up many forms that cover an applicant's entire personal and employment history. They'll also need fingerprints. A background check is also part of the process but since the candidate can't do much about it, so there's no point in discussing it. Applicants should know, though, that those with criminal records aren't allowed to become investment brokers even if they pass the licensing exam described below.

Licensing exam

Preparing for the licensing exam or exams is not an easy task. FINRA does provide training and there are all kinds of study aids including CD's and books. There are also online courses that can be taken for preparation. Each candidate will have to pass at least one and sometimes two exams depending on the state requirements. The Series 7 exam for General Securities is necessary for every investment broker. Additionally, some states may require candidates to also sit for the Series 63 exam.

Apply for jobs

Once the candidate is registered with FINRA and has the license to make a killing for clients on the markets, the final requirement is to find and apply for jobs with brokerage houses. Sort them out based on the preferred type of job. For example, one could focus on learning about being an online discount broker taking care of small daily buy and sell transactions for lots of clients. On the other hand, it's also possible to become a full-service investment broker handling a few long-term selected investment portfolio for clients.

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