A financial analyst is normally referred to a security analyst or investment analyst or research analyst on finance and banking, performs analysis on financial data.
The role of Financial Analyst normally involves studying the data from various institutions pertaining to profit and loss statements, cash flow statements etc. sometimes they are hired by brokerage firms to provide advice to investors by analyzing the market data, current trends in the stock market industry. They often use spreadsheets and other statistical software such as tally etc. and develop forecasts, ratios etc. They also work as consultants to various firms such as auditing and forecast of organization’s revenues etc.
A masters or a Ph. D. degree in subjects such as finance, accounting, taxation etc is recommended. Some firms prefer degrees such as CMA, CCA, CGA or CA.