Most quality posts on CFA prep are a few years old and just repeatedly point to Kaplan/Schweser. Are there any other resources that are equivalent or better in 2020? Barely passed L1 with the BBG program and looking for an upgrade!
09 Sep 2020
Hello, I am currently 27 years old and have been working as a dietitian at a hospital for the last 5 years in Connecticut. 2 years ago I realized I was unhappy with my career and decided to switch to finance. I found the field interesting and would love to work in investment banking one day. To gain a competitive advantage, I will be finishing up my MS degree in Finance this semester (nontarget) with a 4.0 and taking CFA level 2 this June, passed Level 1 above the 90th percentile. I am also completing the WallStreet Prep course for PowerPoint and Excel (modeling). I am attempting to network
13 Mar 2020
Hi Guys, Prepping to take CFA level 2 in June, heard good things about the Schweser books and good things about the Wiley online course. Could potentially buy Schweser books (anyone with comments on how it is for level 2? It worked well for me in level 1) and or the Wiley Course (anyone have opinions or recs for different courses?
06 Feb 2020
- Do you have ambitions of launching/buying a private business (apart from a fund) on the side or is your sole passion the public markets? 2. Do you have (or plan to have) real estate investments?
17 Jul 2020
I know the CFAI hasn't stated more definitively yet whether they're going to postpone the June 2020 exams or if they're still going to happen as scheduled, only that they're still monitoring events. I don't want to speculate too much, but what do you guys think is most likely going to happen? If anyone has any insight, that would be appreciated. Official CFAI communication: https://www.cfainstitute.org/en/about/press-room/…
16 Mar 2020
I'm coming from a non finance background (medical device sales) and I'm taking the CFA level 1 in June of this year. I'm registered for a Schweser class starting this coming Tuesday. If I start studying now, do you think I have enough time to prepare and pass the CFA level one in June? I'm taking this exam with the intention of transitioning into equity research
19 Jan 2020
Before I got dinged for starting a new thread on MBA vs CFA, I'd like to hear your opinion on my personalized situation. I'm currently 35 years old and working as a CFO for an energy company in the US, making around $200K/year. Prior to becoming a CFO, I mostly spent my time in financial services at big 4 (yes, I'm a CPA). I do have a side hustle whereby I founded a construction company with a friend (an engineer) a couple years ago (I manage the finances). It hasn't made much money yet, but it does have potential. And I dont spend much time on it too (maybe 2-3 hours/week). I come from an
13 Mar 2020
I'm currently interviewing at a couple of prestigious firms and when I applied, I had "CFA Level I candidate" (lol) on my resume and that's the resume that landed me the interviews. The thing is, now that I got the results and didn't pass (barely), I don't know how I should go about talking about this during interviews. I don't want them to think I'm incompetent cause I didn't pass, I just had some things going on. How should I tackle the inevitable "So did you pass the CFA" question..? I'm obviously not going to lie and say I did, but I want to know the best way to go about breaking the news
10 Feb 2020
Hi all, I've recently joined a MM PE firm (thanks WSO for your help!). As I'm coming from management consultancy, I've been offered the opportunity to study for either the CFA or PT MIF (or something else if I can argue for it) to help bring me up to speed to the technicals I missed out on having not done 3 years of IB. Selfishly I'd like to make sure that what ever I choose is going to give the best opportunity at a bigger fund in a couple of years' time, as well as provide a solid knowledge base for whilst I'm here. My initial thoughts are that the CFA is more 'technical', and not 100%
01 Apr 2020
I work doing acquisitions, and I have recently considered applying for some Development Associate positions. Some postings at larger shops list CFA on their requirement lists, and I believe this could be the HR/recruiter/talent acquisition person just throwing a bunch of stuff at the wall, but it got me thinking: is there a strong value add case for a CFA in most REPE/Development roles? For PM, it makes sense (and I work with someone in our PM department that has a CFA), but outside that it doesn't appear to be common. Also, I have been considering going for designation, and I was told my
25 Jul 2019
For studying purposes for CFA Level I (or any level), what's the best way to study: 1) Prep Provider (e.g., Kaplan, Bloomberg, AnalystPrep, etc.), 2) Learning Ecosystem (that comes with CFA registration), or 3) combo of both? And if it's a combo, how do you best use both systems together? Thinking it would be a combo, but didn't know if the Learning Ecosystem is actually any good... what worked best for you and why? If there's already a post on this, anyone have the link?
23 Nov 2020
About me BBA in Finance in 2018 from a non-target in Texas with a 3.4 GPA Have not yet taken the GMAT, but plan on it in early 2021 Currently work in WM at a no name shop in NY (not Manhattan) where I spend half my time doing equity research for our US Equity Strategy and the other half in various roles on the WM side I am trying to break into ER, but I have had little success through traditional methods i.e. networking with alumni and sending my resume into the black hole that is the online application system. My alumni network hasn't worked out due to the simple fact that almost nobody seems
22 Nov 2020
I'm a recent finance graduate from a "non-target" with a 4.0 GPA. I've had a WM internship at a BB in NYC and also worked part time at my school's endowment fund doing ER for the portfolio. I was the only person at the WM internship to get a return offer, which I turned down because I knew I wanted to pursue research roles. For the last year, I applied to any relevant job posting that didn't require experience and got 3 interviews (a boutique HF, a MM FoF and a top consulting firm (MBB). In each scenario, I was able to make it to the final round and was passed up. Feedback said I was a perfect
30 Sep 2019
Hey everyone! Hope everyone is doing well in this pandemic, as the title suggests, I was wondering if firms hire from Masters programs at Canada for CF roles. (Preferebly HEC Montréal). And how is CFA viewed upon in the CF industry? Thank you
29 Oct 2020
Hi does anyone know how much of a salary boost you can get if you have both your CFA and MBA in Canada? Background info: I'm a recent graduate and work in Big 4 Consulting (in a finance-specific group) making $70k a year. Writing CFA L2 in 2021 and have a BComm in Finance so completing an accelerated MBA in the next couple years will be wayyy cheaper and faster for me than doing a regular MBA. I'd really like to do both, I'm the first woman in my family to go to university and grew up in poverty so it's just something I've always wanted to accomplish given where I was before (aka not doing it
21 Oct 2020
I'm doing a BSc and I've recently started my placement year. I know you need to be in your last year of university to be able to enrol, however I would technically be in my last year if I didn't decide to take a year out to work. I look forward to hearing from you!
19 Oct 2020
I am a 34 y.o. mid to senior level in-house derivatives lawyer at a French investment bank. My main career goal is to become a general counsel - the main issue I see is the fact that I am specialist and general counsels are usually generalist corporate lawyers coming out of private practice. I have taken into consideration an executive MBA to improve my management skills and increase visibility (and also because I love the business side of things and wouldn't mind a commercial role). However, this isn't a viable option: my employer wouldn't sponsor me financially and wouldn't give me the time
15 Oct 2020
How did everyone do? Background: Undergrad - Finance and Economics - State School Grad School - MSF - Semi Target Investment Analyst @ Asset Management Firm Scores: >70 - Alternative Investments and Derivatives, Ethics, Quantitative Methods 70>x>50 - Corporate Finance, Equity Investments, Fixed Income, Portfolio Management 50> - Economics, Financial Reporting & Analysis Barely passed (FR&A was my almost downfall). Focused almost entirely on the practice questions provided by the CFA Institute. Definitely would recommend reading. Signed up on the last day so only had about 50 days to prep. Will
24 Jan 2019
I am currently going through the Schweser books right now and they are the only study materials that I have. I am also considering buying the QBankPro from Kaplan because it was very helpful when I passed the SIE and the Series 65. The first question is: do you think I have enough time to study for the Level I CFA exam? I know it is very hard, but I badly want to pass it and then take the II in June of next year. The problem is that I have no real background in finance and my grasp on math is not great. I have heard that it is possible and others have told me I should wait to take the Level I
14 Aug 2019
Hi All, Taking Level 1 in a couple of weeks. Just curious, for those of you who have passed, what was the approximate number of practice questions you completed prior to the exam? I know there is no magic number and no such thing as too many but I would like to benchmark myself against those who have passed. I have done about 1500 and hope to have near 3000 done by time I take the exam. Thanks in advance.
03 Jun 2019
Hi all, Background: 5 years experience in CRE as a broker, CFA charter, semi-target BBA undergrad I have 2 potential job opportunities. I have an offer from job A and still have two weeks of interviewing left with job B. I want to know what are the CRE related growth opportunities for job A and whether I should wait for job B at the risk of losing job A? This is in Canada (where salaries are generally lower than US). Job A: Senior underwriter at a lender focusing on construction financing. Comp is $90k+10% bonus. Since its development financing, I will be involved a large variety of projects
01 Aug 2019
I am currently an M&A executive at Deloitte UK and have been working here since September 2017. I have just finished my ACA qualification (UK chartered accountancy) and have the opportunity to do another qualification funded by Deloitte. I was therefore contemplating doing the CFA. Many of my friends have done the CFA and I therefore understand what is required to complete all 3 levels. I wanted to ask for advice on whether people think it would be worthwhile for me to do it? Or whether there is another qualification that would be more useful (MBAs are not funded). Would be great to hear some
13 Feb 2020
Hey all, I wanted to get your thoughts/feedback on studying for the CFA. Previously, I've spent quite some time on the asset management and capital markets side where a CFA mattered. I have studied the level 2, but I've yet to pass it. More recently, I'd made a lateral into commercial real estate where the CFA is less likely to impact my career. Should I continue the CFA designation or spend the time doing something else? My main goals for the CFA is to allow room for flexibility and if I want to jump back into asset management one day. Another is to hopefully improve salary growth. What're
21 Dec 2018
Hello all, I did not know what forum would be the most appropriate for this question so I just went with IB. Will a DUI conviction on my record bar me from being a CFA Charterholder and becoming a member of the CFAI? I have been studying for close to a year for L1 and I made a stupid, arrogant, and dangerous mistake and I feel ashamed. Thank You, TJ
25 Aug 2020
Would you want to know from prospective hires that they plan on taking CFA Level 1 in June? I don't want to be the incoming CFA Level I candidate types on LinkedIn... I know it's a tough exam and passing it the first time around is a pretty big deal. That being said, should I put taking CFA Level I in June on my resumé? I know this question might be very elementary but I'm doing whatever I can in order to avoid stepping on toes. Is this something that I should mention to interviewers that I plan on taking CFA Level I in June?? Please share your thoughts, hoping to hear input from certified
10 Jan 2019
Basically I'm studying for the CFA Level 1 right now and everyone puts up a number of hours that they took to study. However, everyone comes from different background and has a different IQ so it would be nice to see some numbers from people who include their alma mater (or general type/"quality" of university), major/s, GPA, and even SAT/ACT scores (essentially as vectors of IQ, and amount of time previous spend on relevant material). Some people will try and say this is being discriminatory against smaller non-ivy schools, but when it comes down to it I think we can all agree that on average
02 Apr 2018
Hey all, I passed the CFA exam on the first attempt and thought I'd share my methodology. Enjoy! #### The Time Commitment It's generally recommended that you start five/six months studying before exam day. I recommend starting seven months before. This may seem excessive however, you want to give yourself the best chance of passing every level the first time so you won't have to spend even more time and more money retaking a level. Would you rather spend an extra month studying to increase your odds of not having to RE-STUDY for another five to six months and RE-PAY exam registration fees
07 Feb 2018
Hi all, I secured a job after graduating and am currently working as an Investment Analyst at a large Insurance firm's investment management team on fixed income. I hope to eventually work at a large fund manager one day and move up the ranks. Quick questions: 1. Is working as an Investment Analyst at an Insurance firm looked down upon when applying for large Fund Managers? 2. Should I pursue a CFA or Masters in Applied Finance in the near future? Thanks for any input
13 May 2018
CFA L1 this Saturday... I've taken the LSAT before, but building confidence for this beast is pretty damn hard even if you've majored in finance, accounting, or econ and put in 300 hours already. So, to help break up some study time, are there any great success/dumb luck stories from past candidates?
03 Dec 2017
I'm a Junior/Senior undergrad at non-target and I'm hoping to take the CFA level 1 this June (I haven't enrolled yet.) I've factored that I can dedicate around 300 hours to study. 150 hours over winter break ( 3 1/2 weeks x 40 hours per week + some weekend study) and then 1 week during spring break (another 40 hours) and then between May and June before my summer internship (another 150 hours.) Does this sound at all possible, or just a pipe dream? I am not the smartest person out there, but I do work really hard. Any insight or advice is welcome. Thank you.
20 Oct 2017
Just got my results for Level 1 and I passed. 7/10 sections over 70%, none below 51%. I am so stoked right now despite it only being level 1, anyone else get results?
30 Jul 2017
Hi all, I was wondering what types of roles a level III candidate could be in good running for. I currently work at a bank in back office finance and would like to move into a corporate banking/debt capital markets type role.
12 Dec 2018
Hello, Before asking my question, a little bit of background: I was working in the consulting field for around 2-3 years located in North Africa, and serving local companies. I decided to make the jump to North America, and join the Master of Energy Economics program at Rice University. Having just one year of Master, even in a great university not being enough, I decided to also add to my skills, and I started learning R from Datacamp. I now seek to work in energy analytics, trading, economics or consulting. In my networking process, I've talked to someone working as a commodity trader, and
21 May 2020
I have been considering the debate between getting your CFA, MBA, or both, and after much thought I am not sure either make you a better investor per se. Both can increase your knowledge set, and a MBA can help you switch careers seamlessly, but I am truly after becoming a better investor, and was wondering if any graduate program (MBA included) can make you a better investor?
28 May 2018
I am approching the CFA level one exam and wondering about what is the best path to pass it. I really appricietate some insight about books, forum, tips and any usefull source to tackle the exam.
08 Jun 2017
Short version: should I disclose the circumstances of my dismissal from my last job in the professional conduct section of the exam application if I signed a non-disclosure/non-disparagement agreement with my previous employer when I left? I'm concerned that if I disclose to the CFA institute, they will contact my previous employer to get their side of the story, which would reveal that I had violated the terms of my NDA and my previous employer could hold me liable for my severance pay plus interest. However, I'm also worried that if I don't disclose the allegations made against me (even
30 Sep 2018
Wondering what is WSO's take on the coming automation of financial analysis. Will markets ever get so efficient from the algos that CFA's and research associates won't be needed?
21 Nov 2017
I'm applying for a job that lists some specific finance skills and knowledge in the job posting. It also prefers CFA charterholders or candidates. I'm thinking of putting something like:
In order to have better keyword matching on my application. I expect any human (even an HR person) reading the resume knows perfectly well what the CFA is, making the bolded section redundant, but I'd like to make it past whatever automated filters they have. Does this look stupid? Am I being paranoid? Good idea Passed CFA Level I Exam covers DCF, NPV, financial statement analysis, etc etc
02 May 2017
Hello, I started 20 years ago in the retail brokerage space, went institutional asset management sales, for Fortune 50 (Think a large Rock) and Fortune 25 (rhymes with Pells Pargo). I completed my CIMA at Wharton, so it is not like I am intellectually challenged. I once applied for a position and they said, you are great, but you need a CFA and an MBA to apply. Goal now set firmly in my head. I completed my MBA in Finance from #3 PMBA program, and then stayed another year for a double major in Strategy. I then passed Level I and bombed Level II, went back to school to complete my Masters in
05 Jan 2018
I plan on taking CFA level 1 this year but started a new job and didn't get started as early as I'd like. At this point do you consider December to be reasonable or should I wait to sit for it in June?
31 Jul 2017
I was thinking about enrolling for the CFA. However, I'm not sure what it's actually about. I know the Quant and the Econ sections are more about setting background for broader portfolio management concepts and issues but what is the crux of the program? Is it valuation? If it is that, how does their material compare to books written by McKinsey and Aswath Damodaran on valuation (I've read McKinsey and found it to be VERY practical and "fast-paced", while I think AD is more academic and exhaustive)? Especially Aswath Damodaran. I have all of his books but too busy to read them. So would making
27 Mar 2020
Hello Everyone I am a recent graduate of Manchester Business School with a Master in finance i was unable to secure a position during my studies and was forced to return to Greece where i work in the transaction advisory department of an accountancy firm mainly performing due diligence. i would like to get into investment banking and give my lack of success so far i would like to ask about my options going forward. should i pursue the CFA, should I try for an MBA in a couple of years and which schools should i be hoping to get into ? Any advice would be very welcome. i am afraid i have lost my
26 Mar 2020
Given the fact that I come from extreme non-target up in Canada I decided to start networking and getting to know the finance community proactively. I met plenty of people in all types of roles and industries imaginable. By using LinkedIn and personal conversations to find out more about their early career paths I was able to create a spreadsheet to try to see if they have anything in common. I excluded people who made it to front office through family connections and those who are very old because it's too difficult to pinpoint their beginnings back in the 60's or 70's. Quick reference sheet
28 Oct 2018
In my first year out of school and currently working as a research analyst. looking to as i gain more experience, work as an analyst in a hedge/mutual fund. Debating going after the CFA and was wondering if anyone had any feedback on how it may have impacted them following earning the charter? jobs, salary? what benefits you might have realized from it? Thank you
15 Jun 2018
Backdrop: -Originally gave myself 7 months to study (came from Econ undergrad, so I figured I would need more time than most) -Department I work in is understaffed like you wouldn't believe, had to work crazy (80+) hours for the last 5 months, despite being in BO. -Barely had time to study at all, even on weekends -It is now 2 months before the Dec. Level 1 Exam -Working through SchweserNotes and ODing on Qbank - On FRA now, but feel like I'm not retaining any info from previous sections -Trying to make flash cards for better retention but I find it extremely time consuming -Nowhere near ready
29 Sep 2016
Hello everyone, I planning to take the CFA Level I exam in December and want to take a few mock exams before that to get some practice. What mock exam providers would you recommend? I am considering Schweser but I'm a bit put off by the high price. I've also found 3Prep but I'm not sure about their quality.
08 Nov 2016
Congratulations! We are very pleased to inform you that you passed the December 2015 Level I CFA exam. 43% of candidates passed the December 2015 Level I CFA exam. :) > 70% all sections :) Hope it's good news for everyone else...?
30 Jan 2016
I'm a 1st year analyst in a MM in lev fin and am looking into taking the CFA this year. I've read a lot though that for banking and PE it's not really beneficial. I would be doing it against my banking hours too. The views of any experienced bankers and PE guys would be really helpful here in deciding if it's worth the 200-300 hours just to have it in terms of future career prospects and its value.
16 Jan 2016