Can you explain financial models?


Job applicant is answering questions in front of the panel of interviewersMost big corporations will train you on how to do the job. That is the reason why your answers to behavioral questions, and the attitude you demonstrate in an interview, will often matter more than your answers to technical questions.

Nonetheless, in some cases, and for some employers, and especially in small business environment, you answers to technical questions will decide whether you get the job or not.

We may ask you both simple and complex questions, depending on your level of experience, and the job you apply for (entry level, intermediate, or senior FA position).

Practical and precise answer

If possible, you should always add a practical example to your answer. We should see that you do not only read books and repeat blank definitions, but that you actually understand what the definitions mean for you, and for the employer. 

At the end of the day, you should not forget that technical questions are what they are–technical. Recruiters expect a precise answer. If they ask about ROI, you should say return on investment. Nothing more, nothing less. And if inquire about financial modelling, you should tell them what it is, adding an example:

Financial modelling is an exercise in either asset pricing or corporate finance, an exercise of quantitative nature. Saying it differently, it is about translating a set of hypotheses about the behavior of markets or agents into numerical predictions. To show you an example, based on the hypotheses that dollar will grow constantly the next year, a rise of the trade deficit will be 5% (bearing in mind the trend of last twelve months).

A difficult interview

Jeremy Hopkins, author of the websiteYou will have to answer personal, behavioral, and technical questions. You will have to convince them that you are better than the other job applicants who compete with you for the job. You will have to win them over….

If you would like to get some advanced help, you can check my eBook, Financial Analyst Interview Guide, in which you will find everything you need to succeed in your interview. Thank you, and good luck!

Jeremy Hopkins, Your Personal Interview Coach