Career as Investment Banker

Last Updated By Sukriti Vajpayee on 14 Aug, 2023

How to Become a Investment Banker

About Investment Banker

An Investment Banker is an expert who assists companies and clients in managing and growing their financial assets. They offer advice on making smart investment decisions to increase the value of their assets, drawing from their understanding of market trading activities and profitable securities. Additionally, Investment Bankers act as intermediaries in deals and facilitate mergers and acquisitions.

To become an Investment Banker, one has to either take a finance or commerce related course or an MBA or finance related degree. The investment banking course is considered one of the most thrilling and demanding courses in the finance field due to the constantly changing market dynamics. Investment Bankers with strong financial acumen are often pivotal in major corporate deals, but they also help smaller clients build their financial portfolios and make profitable investment choices. While Investment Bankers provide guidance, the ultimate decision to invest lies with the client.

An Investment Banker is an individual who helps companies, organizations and clients manage and grow their financial assets. Investment Banker aids companies to make sound decisions when it comes to investing their assets with the motive of increasing the value of their investments. Investment Bankers are expected to have a good knowledge of market trading activities and profitable securities. Based on this knowledge, they can guide a client towards making better decisions when it comes to investing their money in the market through activities such as purchasing stock or securities. Apart from this, Investment Bankers also work as mediators or brokers between two parties and are often responsible for setting up deals or facilitating mergers and acquisitions.

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Who is an Investment Banker?

An Investment Banker is a professional who supports clients in raising funds through capital markets by issuing debt or selling equity for organizations. They work for companies and underwrite new debts and equity securities for various types of businesses. Investment Bankers also assist in selling securities, facilitating mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, and brokering trades for institutions and private investors. Their career involves advising clients on unique investment opportunities like derivatives and assisting with mergers and acquisitions. Depending on the organization, an Investment Banker may perform a range of tasks, with some specializing in specific areas while others handle multiple duties.

How to Become an Investment Banker in India

Investment Bankers are highly sought after in India due to the abundance of job opportunities and attractive salary packages. Their demand is expected to grow further as they are required to possess a strong understanding of market trading activities and profitable securities in the future. Aspiring candidates should start preparing for a career in investment banking from their school days by choosing relevant subjects and streams that lay the foundation for this field.

Students with aspirations to become an Investment Banker should opt for commerce as their stream in their class 12th board exams. Taking Mathematics and Accounts as subjects will facilitate their success in clearing entrance examinations for further undergraduate and postgraduate courses to pursue a career in investment banking.

Exam Required to Become an Investment Banker in India

There are no specific exams to become an Investment Banker in India. However, candidates have to opt for certain degrees that can help them start their career in investment banking and they have to appear for the entrance exams for admission to these courses. Degree courses such B.Com, BBA Finance, MBA in Finance, MS in Finance etc require clearing exams like CUET, IPU-CET, NMIMS NPAT, CAT, MAT, XAT, SNAP etc. 

One can also take up certifications like CFA, NISM etc, qualify their exams and start their career as an Investment Banker in India.

Skills Required to Become an Investment Banker in India

Similar to other financial careers, getting into investment banking is easier if one has a solid foundation of financial expertise from formal education and early work exposure. Additionally, specific skills are crucial for excelling in this field which are outlined below:

  • Mathematics Proficiency: Investment banking favors individuals with a strong grasp of mathematical concepts. It is essential to have a good understanding of mathematical formulas to carry out the required tasks effectively.
  • Analytical Acumen: Sharp analytical skills are vital for Investment Bankers as they need to work on research and financial models, necessitating quick learning and adaptation.
  • Basic Finance Knowledge: Basic understanding of finance is expected when entering the finance world. Investment banking, in particular, requires expertise in three fundamental statements: Profit & Loss Account, Balance Sheet, and Cash Flow Statement.
  • Proficiency in PowerPoint and Excel: Knowledge of PowerPoint and advanced Excel has become a basic prerequisite not only in investment banking but across industries. These tools play a significant role in the field, with about 85% of the work involving Excel and PowerPoint presentations.
  • Financial Modeling Expertise: A clear understanding of financial models is crucial in the investment banking world. Investment Bankers extensively work on financial models and seek aspirants who can prepare or build models from scratch, making financial modelling knowledge a vital prerequisite for a successful career in this field.

How to Become an Investment Banker Abroad

The main objective of investment banking is to act as an intermediary between companies or institutions and investors, helping with the capitalization process. To become an international Investment Banker, one can follow the steps outlined below:

  • Earn an undergraduate degree, typically a 3 or 4-year program. Degrees in finance and commerce-related fields are particularly beneficial for entry-level positions with investment banks.
  • Pursue a master's degree. A two-year Master of Business Administration (MBA) in financial management is highly sought after for aspiring Investment Bankers. Alternatively, candidates can consider a Master of Science (MS) in finance.
  • Obtain a professional certificate such as a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). The CFA program offers comprehensive and practical financial and investing education. Candidates can apply for this program after completing their bachelor's degree, and the duration of the course can range from one to four years. Obtaining a CFA certification can significantly enhance one's career prospects as an Investment Banker.

Exam Required to Become an Investment Banker Abroad

Becoming an international Investment Banker does not require specific exams. However, candidates need to pursue finance and commerce-related degrees at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels, for which they may need to clear exams like GMAT, among others. Additionally, obtaining certifications like CFA, NISM, etc., and successfully passing their respective exams can open the path to a career as an Investment Banker in India.

Skills Required to Become an Investment Banker Abroad

Possessing strong communication, networking, and interpersonal skills plays a pivotal role. These capabilities are essential for building and nurturing relationships with clients, colleagues, and other professionals in the industry.

Moreover, Investment Bankers must thrive in high-paced environments, as their work often involves working under tight deadlines and high-pressure situations. Being proficient in research and analysis is equally crucial, as they need to thoroughly evaluate market trends, financial data, and investment prospects to make well-informed decisions.

Effective presentation skills are also vital to effectively communicate complex financial concepts and proposals to clients and stakeholders. Additionally, the ability to manage time and handle multiple projects simultaneously is critical to ensuring efficiency and meeting clients' needs.

Having these skills and qualities, aspiring Investment Bankers can pave the way for a successful and fulfilling career in this field.

How to Become an Investment Banker after 12th

Getting ready for a career as an Investment Banker involves two stages of education: UG and PG Preparation. 

After successfully completing their intermediate education, candidates can choose from various undergraduate courses, which typically last for 3 years. These courses focus on imparting comprehensive knowledge about the banking and commerce industry. Popular ones include B.Com, BBA Finance, BA Economics etc.

Exam Required to Become an Investment Banker after 12th

In India, becoming an Investment Banker does not entail specific exams; however, candidates must pursue certain degrees that pave the way for a career in this field. These degree courses, such as B.Com, BBA Finance, etc., do require clearing exams like CUET, IPU-CET, etc., as a prerequisite to pursuing them. These exams serve as a pathway for aspiring individuals to begin their journey in the investment banking field.

Skills Required to Become an Investment Banker after 12th

The skills required at this stage are not too specific. However, candidates should have some skillset such as sound financial intellect, discipline, creativity, open mindedness, relationship building skills, etc.

How to Become an Investment Banker after Graduation 

Once candidates finish their undergraduate studies, they have the option to pursue postgraduate (PG) or PG Diploma courses in the relevant field. These advanced programs offer in-depth knowledge and expertise, enabling the candidate to gain a deeper understanding of the profession and pave the way to becoming an Investment Banker.

Aspiring Investment Bankers often seek a highly coveted 2-year MBA in financial management as their preferred postgraduate degree. Additionally, those with ambitions of becoming Investment Bankers may opt for a Master of Science (MS) in Finance. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) Academy provides various postgraduate programs in investment banking, capital markets, banks and financial planning, business analytics, and management accounting, each with a duration of six to nine months.

Exam Required to Become an Investment Banker after Graduation 

In India, there are no specific exams after graduation that directly lead to becoming an Investment Banker. However, candidates can choose to pursue certain courses or certifications that can facilitate their entry into the investment banking field, and these courses often have exams as prerequisites. Degree courses such as MBA in Finance, MS in Finance, etc., require clearing exams like NMIMS NPAT, IPMAT, CAT, MAT, XAT, SNAP, etc.

Additionally, aspiring individuals can opt for certifications like CFA, NISM, etc., by qualifying their respective exams, which can serve as a pathway to kickstart their career as an Investment Banker in India.

Skills Required to Become an Investment Banker after Graduation 

To pursue a career as an Investment Banker after graduation, several essential skills come into play. First and foremost, possessing strong communication, networking, and interpersonal skills is crucial. These abilities facilitate building and maintaining relationships with clients, colleagues, and other industry professionals.

Furthermore, Investment Banker must thrive in fast-paced environments, as their work often involves tight deadlines and high-pressure situations. Being adept at research and analysis is equally important, as they need to thoroughly assess market trends, financial data, and investment opportunities to make informed decisions.

Effective presentation skills are also necessary to communicate complex financial concepts and proposals to clients and stakeholders. Additionally, the ability to manage time and handle multiple projects concurrently is vital in ensuring efficiency and meeting clients' demands. Moreover, a thorough understanding of relevant regulations concerning securities and mergers and acquisitions (M&As) is imperative. This knowledge ensures compliance with legal requirements and helps navigate the intricate landscape of the financial industry. By honing these skills and qualities, aspiring Investment Bankers can pave the way to a successful and rewarding career in the field.

Eligibility to become Investment Banker

In recent times, a growing number of young candidates are showing interest in the investment banking field due to its prestige, job satisfaction, and earning potential. To become a successful Investment Banker, certain qualifications must be fulfilled.

How to Become an Investment Banker?

Investment Bankers can come from various backgrounds, but having a bachelor's degree in finance, economics, accounting, or mathematics is beneficial. Pursuing a master's degree in finance, obtaining a CFA, or an MBA degree can also enhance one's chances of entering the field and securing higher-level jobs.

Educational Qualification of an Investment Banker

Once you have a clear understanding of what an Investment Banker is, the next important question is to find the required qualification of an Investment Banker. In India, there is no specific mandatory course or stream required to become an Investment Banker. Anyone with a good grasp of financial assets and investing has the potential to pursue this career. However, completing a professional program in a related field can make a student an ideal candidate for the job, as the Investment Banker Course is highly competitive.

Investment Banker Qualifications

Several courses can be beneficial for aspiring Investment Banker to secure entry-level positions in the field, such as Bachelor of Commerce (B.Com) Hons, Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Economics/ Finance, Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Finance, and the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Program. The CFA Program, specifically, is dedicated to training professionals in investment and finance and is considered one of the best paths to enter the field. Many top recruiting companies prefer Investment Banking professionals who have completed a CFA course.

With undergraduate-level qualifications, individuals can enter the industry and gain valuable experience. After 2-3 years of experience, pursuing a postgraduate-level course like an MBA in Finance becomes essential for further career growth in the field.

Physical Requirements of Investment Banker

Becoming an Investment Banker is a challenging task that requires a practical mindset and innovative skills. It is a multi-level process demanding relevant education, ambition, networking, hard work, smart work, out-of-the-box thinking capacity, and strong analytical ability to succeed. There are some additional requirements that will assist Investment Bankers in their careers:

  • Internship: Internships play a crucial role in this career path, and candidates with strong connections can secure excellent opportunities. Connections hold significant relevance when considering investment banking as a career choice. Internships provide essential practical knowledge required for success in this field.
  • Process and Training: Investment Bankers undergo a rigorous training period provided by their employers, which can last for several days or weeks. This training covers essential topics such as accounting principles, market analysis, risk assessment, financial statement analysis, and financial modelling. It also includes soft skills training, like negotiation, presentation, and communication.

Types of Investment Bankers

Various types of Investment Bankers and related careers are listed below:

Financial Planner

Financial Planners are qualified professionals in investment and finance who assists individuals and corporations in achieving their long-term financial goals. They analyze factors like client goals, risk tolerance, and life or corporate stages to recommend suitable investment options. Financial planners provide guidance on budgeting, retirement savings, tax planning, insurance coverage, and more.

Credit Manager

A Credit Manager is a specialist responsible for managing and overseeing credit management within an organization. Their role includes making decisions on credit limits, reviewing existing customer credits, and assessing the creditworthiness of potential customers to optimize company sales and minimize bad debt losses.


Accountants are individuals responsible for ensuring prudent financial management within a company. Accountants play a crucial role in collecting, recording, analyzing, and presenting the company's financial operations to stakeholders.

Financial Advisor

Professionals who assess individuals' financial situations, understand their goals, and help create plans to achieve financial objectives are known as Financial Advisors. 

Certified Management Accountant

CMAs are knowledgeable individuals in financial planning, analysis, control, decision support, and professional ethics.

Salary of Investment Banker

The profession of an Investment Banker is renowned for its high demands, requiring individuals to demonstrate unwavering dedication. However, it also comes with attractive benefits, particularly in terms of pay. This field tends to attract individuals who are highly motivated to achieve significant success and earn substantial salaries. The table provided below illustrates the salary of Investment Banker and related roles.

The average salary of an Investment Banker also depends upon the years of experience, skill set, organization one is hired into, position at which one is hired etc.


Average Salary

Financial Planner

INR 6,00,000 - INR 12,00,000


INR 3,00,000 - INR 5,25.0000

Credit Manager

INR 4,00,000 - INR 9,00,000

Financial Advisor

INR 5,00,000 - INR 11,00,000

Certified Management Accountant

INR 9,00,000 - INR 13,00,000

Courses to Become an Investment Banker

Some of the courses to become an Investment Banker are listed below for your reference.

Chartered Financial Analyst

Chartered Financial Planning

MBA in Finance

Financial Risk Management 

Financial Research & Analytics

Financial Modeling & Valuation Analyst (FMVA)

Certified Management Accounting

Professional Certification in Corporate Finance

List of Colleges which provide Courses to Become Investment Banker

Some of the colleges which provide courses to become Investment Bankers are listed below for your reference.

List of Universities which provide Courses to Become Investment Banker

Some of the universities which provide courses to become Investment Bankers are listed below for your reference.

Types of Job Roles Investment Banker

Since experience counts supreme when it comes to an investment banker, the job roles of a candidate in this industry are very structured and hierarchical. Before being given a permanent position in the industry, candidates are required to intern in an investment banking firm. The experience earned is very valuable not only at the intern-level but also at the senior level positions as well. Given below are some of the that an Investment Banker can take up.

  • Analyst / Junior Analyst: Entry-level position that requires a candidate to have 1 - 2 years of experience in the field. Graduates are mostly hired for this role. The job requires a candidate to perform basic duties such as creating presentations, analysing basic financial data etc.
  • Associate / Senior Analyst: After 3 - 4 years of experience, candidates may be promoted to the roles of Associate or Senior Analyst. Associates usually are responsible for pitching ideas, which helps in finding investors and getting clients on board. An MBA degree is beneficial for any candidate who wishes to take up an associate-level position in the field.

  • Leadership Roles: With further experience in the field, Investment Bankers can take up leading roles such as Vice Presidents, Managing Director etc. in Investment Banking firms. These are well-paid positions but require candidates to have a thorough knowledge and experience in the field.

Employment Sector/Industry for Investment Banker

Investment Banker can look for career opportunities in several regions of the market. Depending upon the skill and interests of a candidate, they can either choose a specific domain or work in multiple domains, depending upon the requirement of their industry or firm. Some of the major sectors of employment for an Investment Banker include:

  • Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A)
  • Sales and Trading

  • Capital Markets

  • Private Equity etc.

Top Recruiting Companies for Investment Banker

Given below are the top recruiters for Investment Banker in India:

  • Goldman Sachs

  • Citigroup

  • Bank of America Merrill Lynch

  • Morgan Stanley

  • JP Morgan

  • HSBC

  • Wells Fargo

  • Accenture

  • Citi

Planning to choose Investment Banker as your career?

Pay Scale/Salary of Investment Banker



Books & Study Material to Become Investment Banker

Candidates preparing for the Investment Banker Course can get into related undergraduate-level courses by utilizing their school-level study materials and books. 
Experienced Investment Banker who are looking for admission to an MBA programme, however, will have to refer to the books related to MBA entrance exam preparation. The best books recommended for such candidates will depend on their college and the entrance exam accepted.
While MBA entrance exam preparation does not require a candidate to study any topics or material related to Investment Banking, colleges may test a candidate's aptitude in the field in their selection processes. Therefore, it is recommended for MBA aspirants as well to have a good knowledge of this sector. Some of the best Investment Banker Course books can be found given below.




Investment Banking: Valuation, Leveraged Buyouts and Mergers & Acquisitions

Joshua Rosenbaum, Joshua Pearl


The Best Book On Investment Banking Careers

Donna Khalife


The Man Who Solved the Market

Gregory Zuckerman


Middle Market M & A

Kenneth H. Marks, Robert T. Slee, Christian W. Blees, Michael R. Nall


Financial Modeling and Valuation

Paul PignataroWiley

Pros of becoming a Investment Banker

Some of the pros of Investment Banker job are given below:

  • Investment Banker are one of the highest-paying individuals in India. Successful Investment Banker are able to provide an extravagant lifestyle for themselves and their family.
  • Candidates who are able to overcome the initial hurdles of the Investment Banker Course are generally able to earn good salaries in this field.
  • An Investment Banker job is a challenging and evolving field. Even Investment Banker veterans in this field come face-to-face with new challenges every now and then.
  • Investment Banker career allows a candidate to apply and sharpen their professional skills and provides first-hand knowledge of markets.
  • For a promising candidate having sound analytical and numerical abilities, the investment banker field promises unlimited and rapid growth.

Cons of becoming a Investment Banker

Some of the cons of Investment Banker job are given below:

  • Investment Banker jobs are extremely demanding and stressful that cannot be said to be for everyone.
  • There is no work-life balance in the Investment Banker jobs since the work requires candidates to be on alert at all times of the day.
  • Investment Manager job is a high-risk job and growth of candidates are majorly dependent on markets, which can crash.
  • Investment Banker are often diagnosed with health issues related to stress or overworking.
  • Automation and AI are causing a reduction in job availability in the sector.

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FAQs about Investment Banker

What is the average fee to pursue an investment banking course?

The average cost of enrolling in investment banking courses varies depending on the type of college. Government colleges typically charge fees ranging from INR 20,000 to INR 1,00,000, while private colleges have a higher average fee of over INR 1,00,000 for these courses.

Is investment banking a good career option?

In India, investment banking presents a promising career avenue for individuals aiming to create a significant impact within the financial sector. It provides attractive compensation, job stability, and the opportunity to engage with intriguing clients and earn bonuses. 

Is an MBA necessary for investment banking?

While an MBA degree is not obligatory for entering the investment banking field, having this advanced degree could potentially enhance your prospects of securing a job more easily.

Is CFA necessary for investment banking?

No, one can become an investment banker without getting the CFA Charter certification.

Is investment banking tough to study?

Yes, it is tough to study investment banking, as becoming an investment banker can be challenging due to the stressful and demanding nature of the profession.

Which degree is best for investment banking?

 Degrees in finance, accounting, business administration, and related business disciplines are best for investment banking.

What is the age limit to pursue investment banking?

Certainly, there is no age restriction for changing your career path at the age of 30. All you need to do is complete a minimum 3-year graduation course. Pursuing an MBA can lead you to becoming an investment banker, and it's worth noting that there are no age limits for CAT or any other management entrance exams.

Which stream to choose for an investment banker?

To choose a stream to become an investment banker, one can take up a Bachelor of Commerce (B.Com), Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in finance, B.A. Economics; and BBA Finance etc.

Is mathematics compulsory to be an investment banker?

While a mathematics degree is not a prerequisite, possessing strong numerical skills can be advantageous for a career in investment banking. 

Which specialisation of MBA or course is best for investment banking in India?

Students aiming to work as investment bankers have the option to pursue an MBA in Finance or obtain a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) degree. Investment bankers can also be Chartered Accountants or individuals in the process of attaining CA certification.


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