Portfolio Administrator Job Description and Career Information

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a portfolio administrator. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about degree programs, job duties and registration to find out if this is the career for you.

A portfolio administrator manages a company's investments, endowments and investors. In order to become a portfolio administrator you'll need to hold a bachelor's degree.

Essential Information

Portfolio administrators manage the investments of institutions, endowments, and individual investors. They are employed by various financial services companies, such as banks, mutual fund companies, and hedge fund firms. Portfolio administrators typically have a bachelor's degree and several years experience in a financial field.

Required Education Bachelor's degree
Other Requirements Experience, registration with FINRA
Projected Job Growth* 10% between 2014 and 2024 (Securities, commodities and financial services sales agents)
Median Salary (2016)** $50,701

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **Payscale.com

Job Description of a Portfolio Administrator

According to job postings found on Monster.com in November 2013, portfolio administrators are responsible for the processing of various types of financial trades, such as equity and fixed income trades. They work in a fast-paced environment, interacting with management and fund custodians to resolve discrepancies on various projects.

Job Duties

The job duties of a portfolio administrator include overseeing electronic confirmations and portfolio modeling. Daily tasks may include reconciling the holdings in a fund with its custodian or the fund's accounting records, and trading activity with the Depository Trust Company (DTC). Portfolio administrators also compile reports for executives, clients, and portfolio managers, check the performance of funds, create monthly reports, and handle large block trades.

Portfolio Administrator Career Information

Education and Skill Requirements

Although some companies accept applicants with an associate degree, most require a bachelor's degree, preferably in finance or accounting. Many companies also prefer candidates with one to five years of work experience in finance. Generally, employers look for people who are organized, highly motivated, and who work well under pressure. Other required skills include facility with Microsoft Office products, especially Excel.

Other Requirements

Some businesses require candidates to become registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), the largest independent securities firms regulator in the United States. Companies may also require portfolio administrators to take the Uniform Investment Adviser Law Examination, also called the Series 65 exam, which is developed by the North American Securities Administrators Association and administered by FINRA (www.finra.org).

Salary and Career Advancement

According to PayScale.com in January 2016, most portfolio administrators in the U.S. make between $38,681 and $75,362 a year (bonuses, commissions, and other benefits included). Individuals pursuing careers in finance often return to school to obtain a Master of Business Administration (MBA). The MBA is a highly regarded degree in that it provides real-world business experience. Obtaining the MBA affords opportunities for jobs such as portfolio manager, securities or commodities agent, or other high-level finance or management positions, for which the degree is a requirement.

Portfolio administrators must be organized, thorough, able to work in a fast-paced environment and possess excellent communication skills. Most companies want someone with a bachelor's degree in a relevant field, and many people in this field go on to earn MBAs. Some businesses require that portfolio administrators be registered with FINRA and pass FINRA's Series 65 exam.


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