Highest Number of Distinctions
The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) is a prestigious certification credential offered to experiences financial and investment professionals. Becoming a CFA certifies that financial analysts have comprehensive knowledge of investments and securities to add value to their organization. CFA is one of the most sought after degree as it is highly regarded for enhancing credibility in finance. With a CFA qualification, you can work as portfolio management, research analyst, consultant, investment banking analyst, and accountant, etc.
Why Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA)
- CFA degree is internationally recognized for equipping you with the skills and knowledge to excel at all stages of your career
- CFA is considered the gold standard of excellence in financial and investment management that can be used to advance into executive-level roles
- CFA is more affordable than other degrees such as the MBA and you can study for a CFA exam while you work
- CFA degree connects you an exclusive group of outstanding investment professionals, hence building a strong network system for you
- CFA charter is considered a niche in the larger business world
The CFA Program is organized into three levels, each culminating in a six-hour exam. The program curriculum progresses in complexity as you move through the three levels:
- Level I: Focuses on basic knowledge of the ten topic areas and simple analysis using investment tools.
- Level II: Emphasizes the application of investment tools and concepts with a focus on the valuation of all types of assets.
- Level III: Focuses on synthesizing all of the concepts and analytical methods in a variety of applications for effective portfolio management and wealth planning.
For all three levels the student will be tested on the following topics:
- Ethical and Professional Standards
- Quantitative Methods
- Financial Reporting Analysis
- Corporate Finance
- Equity Investments
- Portfolio Management and Wealth Planning
- Fixed Income
- Alternative Investments
The level I exam is administrated twice a year (usually the first weekend of June and December). The Level I exam consists of 240 multiple choice questions, split between two 3-hour sessions. Candidates must attend both sessions:
- Morning session (3 hours): 120 multiple choice questions, covering all topics
- Afternoon session (3 hours): 120 multiple choice questions, covering all topics
The Level II exam has a total of 21 item set questions:
- Morning session: 10 item set questions
- Afternoon session: 11 item set questions
On the Level II exam, you will have a total of 120 items (18 vignettes with 6 items each and 3 vignettes with 4 items each, for a total of 21 vignettes) compared to 240 multiple choice items on the Level I exam.
The Level II exam is worth 360 points, corresponding to the number of minutes on the exam. The 120 Level II items are equally weighted, 3 points each, with no penalty for incorrect answers.
On the Level II exam, some topics are covered in the morning session only and other topics are covered in the afternoon session only.
The Level III exam consists of an item set and constructed response (essay) and item set questions:
- Morning session: Constructed response (essay) questions (usually between 8 and 12 questions, each with several subparts) with a maximum of 180 points. (The point value for each question is provided in the exam book.)
- Afternoon session: 11 item set questions (8 vignettes with 6 items each and 3 vignettes with 4 items each, for a total of 11 vignettes)
To become a CFA candidate, you must enroll in the CFA Program® before you can register for the Level I Exam.
CFA PROGRAM ENTRANCE REQUIREMENT
- Meet the education requirement in one of the following ways:
- Undergraduate education: A bachelor’s (or equivalent) degree or be in the final year of your bachelor’s degree program. You will have to complete your bachelor’s degree program in order to register for the Level II exam
- Work experience: Four years of professional work experience (does not have to be investment related), or
- A combination of professional work experience and education that totals at least four years. Part-time positions do not qualify, and the four-year total must be accrued prior to enrollment.
- Have an international travel passport CFA Institute requires that every CFA Program candidate have a valid international travel passport to register and sit for the exam.
- Be prepared to take the exams in English
- Meet the professional conduct admission criteria All candidates in the CFA Program must complete a Professional Conduct Statement form to attest that they are in compliance with this requirement
- Live in a participating country There are some countries that CFA Institute cannot work with. Be sure your country is not excluded from participation in the program.