Finance

CFA® Charterholder FAQs

person using laptop computer to look up CFA charterholder FAQs

Many finance professionals often have questions about the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation, so we’ve put together these CFA charterholder FAQs to help.

How long does it normally take to complete the CFA Program? 

What are the requirements to become a CFA Charterholder?

  • Pass all three levels of the CFA exam
  • Obtain at least 48 months (four years) of qualified work experience
  • Sign the Professional Conduct Statement form
  • Submit two to three letters of reference from sponsors 
  • Apply to become a charterholder with the CFA Institute

What are the requirements to sit for the CFA exam? 

  • Have a bachelor’s degree or be in the final year of completing a bachelor’s degree
  • Attain 48 months of full-time experience and a combination of education/work experience 
  • Hold an international travel passport
  • Be able to take the CFA exam in English
  • Live in a participating country that administers the exams
  • Complete the Professional Conduct Statement form

How many exams do you have to pass for the CFA charter?

  • A CFA candidate must pass three exams because there are three levels to the CFA exam: Level I, II, and III, with each level testing on different areas of the curriculum

How many hours do you have to study for the CFA exams?

  • The CFA Institute recommends that you study around 300 hours per exam level, so 900 hours total for all three exam levels

What’s included on each level of the CFA exam?

The following curriculum is included on each level of the CFA exam: 

  • Knowledge and Comprehension make up Level I
  • Application and Analysis make up Level II
  • Synthesis and Evaluation make up Level III

What’s the average salary of a CFA charterholder?

A CFA’s salary can range from $50,000 to $300,000 per year based on several factors, including:

  • educational background
  • years of work experience
  • city of residence
  • size and type of company
  • career path

What are the benefits of obtaining the CFA charter? 

  • Become part of a powerful global network of top industry professionals
  • Gain a strong foundation and a commitment to ethics and professionalism
  • Obtain real-world skills for making complex investment decisions
  • Get recognized and welcomed by markets and employers globally
  • Leverage the prestige of having one of the highest credentials in the profession
  • Possess unmatched expertise in both practical investment analysis and management skills
  • Enjoy greater career opportunities than your peers who lack the CFA credential
  • Earn a higher salary and a greater overall compensation package

If you are prepping for an upcoming Level I CFA® exam, check out these top 5 pointers for the Level I CFA exam. And if you want to take your test-prep game to a whole new level, click here for our FREE trial. We’ll have you ready to ace the test on exam day.

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