Roadmap to CFA

CFA stands for Chartered Financial Analyst. It is a credential which is granted by the CFA Institute, USA. 

If you aspire, to have an in-depth knowledge of the finance field, you can opt for this course, to enhance your career prospects as well as to strengthen your foundation to excel at your profession. 

CFA can be an excellent option for you, if you are a B.com or M.com student, pursuing an MBA, CA aspirant or an IT professional.  

Why should you pursue CFA? 

The CFA program aids you to specialize in an extensive range of investment specialties, which can be applied to all the markets of the world. It exposes the candidates, to the important investment principles, so that they can meet all the professional requirements of a workspace. The CFA program defines the competence of a Financial professional.  

CFA Institute, USA 

The CFA Institute awards the Chartered Financial Analyst Degree in the US. A candidate needs to clear the three levels of the examination to obtain this degree.  

The model of this course is entirely based on self-study. Thus, the candidates can pursue it while continuing with their jobs. They only need to appear in the examination. 

The examination is conducted during June and December every year. The candidates do not have to go to the USA for answering their exams. 

They can do so in the designated examination centers in their respective countries. However, CFA test centers are not located in Cuba, North Korea, and the Crimea region of Ukraine. 

Details about the CFA course 

The CFA degree is recognized in over 138 countries of the world. The course can be pursued in most countries. 

It has been structured in a manner which enables the professionals to learn in depth about the financial domain. 

The CFA Institute had been formed in 1963. The charter is the most prestigious investment credential in the world.  

The professionals, who have received this degree are working in different sectors are Chartered Financial Analysts. 

How to enroll for International CFA? 

The minimum qualification for the course is Graduation. The examination is conducted in the English language only, so that global standards can judge the candidates. 

The course does not focus on the theoretical aspects of Investment, but it enables the candidates to manage the finance practically. 

Details of the CFA Course 

Each examination is segmented into two sessions, namely, the morning session and the afternoon session. The syllabus consists of topics such as Ethical and Professional Standards, Quantitative Methods, Economics, Financial Reporting, and Analysis, Corporate Finance, Equity Investments, Fixed Income, Derivatives, Alternative Investments, and Portfolio Management.  

The International CFA Level I exam is structured to judge the Asset Valuation skills of the candidates. CFA Level I examination consists of 240 multiple choice questions to be completed within 6 hours. The candidates need to answer 120 questions in 2 sessions consisting of 3 hours each. There is no negative marking for incorrect answers. Each question has three choices out of which the candidate has to mark the correct choice. You should spend 1.5 minutes on each question. The examination is held during June and December each year. 

CFA Level II examination is conducted to scrutinize the financial analysis as well as application skills. CFA Level II examination is entirely based on item set or Case Studies. On average, there are 20 case studies of 6 questions distributed in 2 sessions of 3 hours each. It implies that a candidate must answer 10 case studies per session. The candidate needs to refer to the Case study to be able to answer each question so that they can understand the possible Investment challenges. This examination is conducted during June every year. 

CFA Level III examination on checking whether the candidate can combine his basic knowledge with the analytical tools and evaluation methods, for the adequate management of the portfolio. CFA Level III examination is also conducted during June. The paper consists of 10 case studies of 6 questions each. The test typically, has case studies describing investment challenges. 

International CFA Results 

The candidates receive a score report which declares whether they have passed or failed in the examination. The results of Level I and Level II are usually announced within two months from the date of examination. The results of Level III are declared within three months from the time of the test. 

The result falls into three categories: below 50%, between 50% and 70%, and above 70%. The candidates who have failed receive information regarding their decile rank. 

The course fees range from $700- $1700 for each level of the examination. Moreover, it is also dependent upon the date of registration of the candidate. An additional payment ranging from $400-$500 may be required for one-time enrolment in the program. 

Eligibility requirements of the candidates 

The candidates need to fulfill the following conditions to be eligible for the examination: 

  • He or She, needs to have a bachelor’s degree from the USA, or some equivalent degree, or be in the third year of Bachelor’s degree program while registering for the course. 
  • He or She, should have a minimum of 4 years of work experience. However, the job does not necessarily need to be investment related. Also, the part-time job positions held by the candidate are not considered for this position. 
  • He or She, must adhere to the norms of Professional Conduct, and Candidate Responsibility, and match the criteria for admission. 
  • HE or She should have a valid passport for international travel for the enrolment and registration of the exam. 

Is CFA appropriate for you? 

Before you decide to enroll in this course, you must determine whether this course is appropriate for you. Most CFA Charter holders are employed in reputed firms as CFOs, Fund Managers, Risk Managers, Equity Research Analysts, and Financial Strategists. Although a good package might lure you, you should also consider your interests before opting for it. Once you have decided that it is suitable for you, you need to begin your preparation with the aid of comprehensive study materials, online material, question banks, and summarized recordings.  

References 

https://www.cfainstitute.org/en/programs/cfa/exam

CFA Exam

https://www.thebalancecareers.com/cfa-exams-how-to-become-a-chartered-financial-analyst-4172757