So you want to be a stockbroker but don't have the time or money to get a degree in finance? Don't worry, you can still become a successful stockbroker without a degree! 

In this guide, we will walk you through the steps necessary to make your dream of becoming a stockbroker a reality. We will cover everything from finding work experience to passing the licensing exam. Let's get started! 

Step One - Research the Industry 

To make an informed decision about whether or not becoming a stockbroker is the right choice for you, you must research the industry. Learn about what stockbrokers do, what skills are required, and what type of work environment you would be entering. This will help you determine if this is the right career for you. 

Step Two - Get Educated 

The next step is to get educated. While a degree is not always necessary, it can be helpful to have some formal education in finance or economics. However, if you don't have a degree, there are plenty of other ways to get educated. 

One option is to read free resources online, such as articles published on this website. Listening to podcasts about the industry can also be a beneficial way to receive an education. 

If you are an avid book reader, you may be able to find some helpful books on the subject at your local library or buy some online. This step is crucial because employers might be more interested in the wisdom you possess rather than a degree.

If you don't have a degree but can show that you have a high level of financial knowledge, you will be in a much better position to find work. It is also essential to open opportunities for step three of becoming a broker without a degree. 

Step Three - Gain Experience 

The third step on the road to becoming a stockbroker is finding work experience. The best way to do this is by networking with people in the industry. Ask your family and friends if they know anyone who works in finance or investment banking. You can also look for job postings on websites like or LinkedIn. 

You might be thinking: "How can I get work experience if I'm just getting started and don't have a degree or connections?" 

The best way to get around this is by interning or volunteering at a financial institution. This will give you the opportunity to learn about the industry and develop your skills. An approach to interning or volunteering might look something like this: 

  1. Find a financial institution in your area. 
  2. Intern or volunteer for some time (usually around three months). 
  3. Ask the company if they would be willing to give you a reference. 

As an intern or volunteer for stockbroker companies, you can expect to complete tasks such as: 

  • Researching stocks and investment opportunities 
  • Helping clients make financial decisions 
  • Assisting with account management.  
  • Building client relationships

This experience can help you understand the business of being a broker better. During these introductory months, you will also be able to develop your skills in areas such as communication, problem-solving, and customer service. 

Another way to gain experience as a stockbroker without a degree is to become a licensed representative. This will allow you to work with clients and give them investment advice. However, this option is not for everyone and can be quite expensive. You will need to pass a licensing exam and meet other requirements set by your state. 

Step Four - Become Licensed 

Once you have found some work experience, it's time to start studying for the licensing exam. The FINRA Series 63 exam is required to become a registered representative (stockbroker) in the United States. 

This exam covers topics such as securities, regulation, and financial planning. Be sure to study hard and practice lots of mock exams. 

There will be 60 questions that will be asked. Applicants only have an hour and 15 minutes to finish the exam. You would need a minimum of 43 correct answers to pass the test. The cost is $147 and there is no prerequisite licensing needed. 

It's important to make sure you are educated and kept up to date with the latest laws and rules. By earning your licensing, you can demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the industry. 

To apply, simply go to and go through the three-step process of applying. It's as easy as enrolling, scheduling the exam, and showing up (online or locally). Make sure that you are ready by asking others that passed the exam what to study for specifically. 

This can help you prepare and avoid any surprises on the big day. Once you have passed the Series 63 exam, you will be rewarded with your licensing. This is a significant step towards your goal of becoming a stockbroker. However, there is still more work to do before you can claim the title. 

Step Five - Get Connected 

One of the best ways to start your career as a stockbroker is by getting connected with people in the industry. Attend industry events, meetups, and networking events. Start conversations with people in the industry and ask them for advice. 

Build relationships with people in the industry and see if they can help you get your foot in the door. If you've been following the other steps, you should already have some base connections to get started. 

With your new licensing and experience, you can now reapproach them and explain how your expertise will help them. After months or years of rapport building, it should be easier to land an opportunity for an interview. 

If you cannot get an interview right away, don't give up. Kindly ask if they might know someone that has the potential for an open position. One of the best things about having a network is that people are usually willing to help if they can. 

By being genuine and persistent, you can eventually get a job in the industry. If new connections don't respond as you hoped, you can always ask the institution that you interned at or the boss that you volunteered for if they have any openings. Connections are key in any industry, and the stockbroker field is no different. 

Step Six - Prepare For The Interview 

After all of your hard work, it's finally time for the interview. This is your chance to shine and show the interviewer that you are the best candidate for the job. Make sure you come prepared with questions to ask them about the company, as well as their thoughts on the industry. 

It's also important to research what products and services they offer so that you can have a better understanding of what you will be selling. It can be helpful to understand the company culture and address it appropriately as if you already are a part of the team. 

If you've networked with someone that works there, they might be able to give you some advice and what to expect from the interview. You can even ask them to say a few positive aspects about themselves to the interviewer to create a good impression. 

If the interviewer asks about your experience, make sure to highlight your volunteer or internship experience as well as your Series 63 license. This will show them that you are knowledgeable and ready to take on the role. 

The interview is also a great opportunity to ask any questions that you may have about the job or the company. It's important to explain how you will be an asset to the company rather than just another employee. 

Show your passion for the industry and your desire to help clients. After the interview, it's essential to send a thank-you note. This will show that you are interested in the position and appreciate their time. 

The final step is to wait for a response from the company. If they offer you the job, congratulations! You have now completed all of the steps and are ready to start. 

Step Seven - Start Selling 

After the sixth step, you can officially call yourself a stockbroker. However, you can only legitimately call yourself that if you stayed employed as one. Now that you have landed your first job as a stockbroker, it's time to start selling. 

You will be responsible for helping clients buy and sell stocks, mutual funds, and other investments. Your main goal is to help them reach their financial goals. This may include educating them on the products they are investing in, providing advice, and helping them stay on track with their portfolio. 

It's important to always put the client first and provide excellent customer service. This will help you build a strong reputation in the industry. Remember, word-of-mouth is one of the best forms of marketing. 

Stockbrokers usually work long hours, so it's important to be prepared for that. You might also have to travel to meet with clients. However, the job can be very rewarding when you help someone reach their financial goals. 

Important Skills To Learn To Become A Stockbroker 

On top of the steps mentioned above, it's important to also possess a strong skill set. Here's what you should continue to work on, no matter what stage you are in when becoming a stockbroker. 

Communication skills

This is essential to build relationships with clients and be able to understand their needs. By effectively communicating, you will be able to provide them with the best service possible. You would also need to communicate with employers why you should be hired, what you offer as an employee of their company. 

Research skills

You need to be able to research stocks and the market so you can provide sound advice to your clients. The market is constantly changing, and having up-to-date information is essential. 

Financial analysis skills

You need to be able to understand financial statements to give recommendations to clients. This includes ratios, trends, and other indicators. 

Organizational skills

As a stockbroker, you will be responsible for a large number of clients. It's important to be able to stay organized and keep track of their investments. 

Problem-solving skills

Clients will often come to you with questions and problems. It's essential to be able to solve them promptly. 

Ethical standards

As a stockbroker, you are responsible for handling a lot of money. It's important to maintain high ethical standards and always put the client's best interest first. 

Time management skills

Since you will be working long hours, it's important to be able to manage your time efficiently. There are some time management books that can help you be more productive.

Sales Skills

This is a key skill that you need to be successful as a stockbroker. You need to be able to sell products and services to clients to help them reach their financial goals. 

Is Becoming A Stockbroker Worth It? 

If you are looking for a career that offers stability, growth potential, and the opportunity to help others achieve their financial goals, then becoming a stockbroker may be the right choice for you. The earning potential for stockbrokers depends on your abilities. Some stockbrokers make less than $50,000 while others make more than $150,000. 

This is because stockbrokers receive income from commission and fees which vary depending on sales performance. It's important to note that this is not an easy career path. You need to be able to work long hours, be knowledgeable about the market, and have excellent sales skills. However, if you are willing to put in the hard work, you can be successful as a stockbroker. 


To summarize, here are the seven steps to becoming a stockbroker without a degree: 

  1. Research The Industry 
  2. Get Educated 
  3. Gain Experience 
  4. Become Licensed 
  5. Get Connected 
  6. Prepare For The Interview 
  7. Start Selling 

Becoming a stockbroker without a degree is possible with the right steps and dedication. It's important to have a strong network, be prepared for the interview, and sell yourself to the company. By following these steps, you will be on your way to starting a successful career in the stock market.