CHOOSING A CAREER / DEC. 12, 2014
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How to Become a Certified Market Technician

Are you a financial or investment analyst looking to improve your competence and ability to attract employers or clients? If you’re, look no further than obtaining the Chartered Market Technician designation, which is awarded by the Market Technicians Association. Keep reading to learn more about becoming a CMT.

What Do Chartered Market Technicians Do?

To begin with, the CMT designation demonstrates the holder’s ability to perform technical analysis. In finance, technical analysis is a method used to study the market value of securities and other financial instruments. As such, their job primarily involves:

  • Gathering market data from banks and other sources
  • Using computer software to interpret market data
  • Forecasting the future prices of securities and stocks
  • Advising investors on where to the most profitable investment ventures

Work Environment

Since CMTs are mainly financial and investment specialists, they work from 9am to 5pm, Monday through Friday.

These professionals spend their time in a fast-paced office environment, often working on their computers and talking to clients on the phone.

Salary

The following table highlights the annual salary of financial analysts, many of who are Chartered Market Technicians:

Occupation

Annual Wage

Financial Analysts

$91,620

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Certification Requirements

So, how do you become a Chartered Market Technician? Well, the journey begins in undergraduate school, where you must earn a bachelor’s degree in any of the following fields:

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Economics
  • Finance

These courses commonly cover courses such as bond valuation, risk management and option pricing. After graduating, find a job as financial or investment analyst. The Market Technicians Association requires all certification applicants to have at least three years of financial analysis or investment management experience. So you must not relinquish your job before attaining the CMT designation.

Another requirement is to obtain ‘member status’ in the MTA. The association offers the following membership levels:

  • Student status – Available to college students
  • Affiliate status – Available to anyone who is interested in technical analysis
  • Member status – This is the status you must obtain to qualify for certification – You need at least five years of professional work experience to get it

The last step to becoming a CMT is to successfully completing the CMT Level 1, 2, and 3 examinations.

Skills and Abilities

Obtaining the CMT designation will not only improve your technical analysis proficiency, but also improve your mastery of the following skills and abilities:

  • Analytical skills
  • Concentration skills
  • Math skills
  • Computer skills
  • The ability to pay close attention to details
  • The ability to effectively communicate technical data

Career Development

A professional certification is always an ideal career advancement tool. If you are employed, the CMT designation will heighten your chances of becoming a financial or investment manager.

If you are in self-employment, the credential will improve your ability to attract more clients, hence increasing your company’s profitability.

Besides this designation, it is important to pursue a master’s degree in business administration or finance.

Job Prospects

The employers of Chartered Market Technicians include:

  • Brokerage firms
  • Government agencies
  • Insurance companies
  • Banks
  • Investment firms

The employment projections for CMTs are relatively good. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of financial analysts will grow by a faster-than-average rate (16 percent) from 2012 through 2022.

So if you are interested in helping individuals and organizations maximize their wealth, the CMT designation will help you achieve your goal.


Image: Career Stair                                               

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