When you head to a job interview, the interviewer usually asks questions that help him or her get a feel for your personality and work ethic. While this is true for all jobs, interviewers for financial analyst jobs often take it several steps further. Because of the nature of the job, questions often get much more technical and do not leave as much room for creative answers. Expect questions like the following during your interview.
Which Statement Best Describes Our Company’s Cash Flow?
While the financial statement that best describes a company’s financial health might vary depending on the business, it is almost always the cash flow statement. The cash flow statement usually gets the least attention, though, which means you will look more knowledgeable by using it as your example. This statement is often most accurate. If you do choose another statement, you will need to provide good justification for doing so.
Explain Working Capital
Your interviewer will likely ask you to explain working capital. Go beyond the basic definition of current assets minus liabilities. First, remember the definition is much narrower if you intend to work in a bank. Regardless of the financial position, take your answer a step further by explaining negative working capital if it relates to the company. Restaurants and grocery stores are examples of businesses in which negative working capital exists.
Describe What Would Concern You if You Were the CEO
This question leaves room for a bit more creativity but should still focus on financial information. Give a strong overview of the company’s current finances, understand the three types of financial statements — income, balance sheet and cash flow — and work from there.
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