Financial advisers or financial planners are professionals who give professional financial advice to customers according to their financial status. In the United States, financial advisers have to complete certain training and obtain registration with a regulatory body to offer advice to people about their investments, savings, retirement and insurance plans. Apart from advising, they also perform other financial functions like planning, investments, servicing, and advising.
The main role of financial advisors is to help their clients set up and maintain appropriate long-term financial goals and strategies. The main objective of a financial advisor is to ensure that his/her clients achieve their long-term financial goals through investment options. This may include retirement planning and asset allocation for retirement. Other objectives of financial advisors include purchasing insurance for example, annuities, bonds, and life insurance policies.
In order to become certified financial planners, the requirements for licensure and certification vary from state to state. Most financial advisors receive formal education and either an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree from an accredited university or college followed by examinations. After graduation, they need to pass the necessary licensing examinations to become licensed in each state they desire to practice. Some states require individuals to pass a test to determine their knowledge on financial issues before they can become certified financial planners.