How to Become a CFA
How to Become a CFA – Introduction
If you are wondering on how to become a CFA, you are at the right place! Here, I will talk on every single thing you got to know on how to become a CFA. For those who are uninformed, the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) credential is one that is strongly associated to financial analysts who are in the top of their fields as far as financial skill and knowledge is concerned. Those with a CFA credential can command some of the highest paying salaries in the finance industry. In addition, the CFA designation will also open the doors to various other financial career paths such as becoming a hedge fund/private equity research analyst, portfolio manager and fund manager. This CFA credential is administered by a non-profit organization, which is known as the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute.
How to Become a CFA – Requirements for the CFA Credential
So how to become a CFA? Well, to obtain the Chartered Financial Analyst credential, a person has to goes through a self-study course, which takes at least three years to complete. The examination process involves three tests, with each taking a whopping six hours to finish. In addition to the exams, one also needs to enter into an agreement so that he or she will promise to uphold the high ethical standards as required by the CFA Institute.
There are qualifications that must be met prior to acceptance into the CFA program. Firstly, you have to be in the final year of a university degree program or hold a degree already. An alternative to the degree requirement is having at least four years of employment in the investment field.
Prior to obtaining the CFA designation, the candidate must have met the education requirement or completed the four years of investment work experience. The candidate is also required to become a CFA Institute member at both the national and local levels. As of January 1, 2011, all applicants must hold a passport. That is all regarding the requirements on how to become a CFA.
How to Become a CFA – The Timeframe to Earn the CFA Credential
In general, most individuals will take one exam each year for three years. This is assuming that each exam is passed on the first attempt. Considering that you either must have a four-year degree or four years of working experience, the minimum time it takes to complete the CFA course is 7 years. If you do not include the university studies and work experience, it is estimated that most CFA candidates complete everything within 4 years. The CFA Institute also recommends that candidates spend at least 300 hours to prepare for each exam.
How to Become a CFA- The Costs Associated with Obtaining a CFA
As of 2011, new students who enroll into the program will have to pay an enrollment fee of $405 to $490 US dollars. In addition, you need to pay for the registration fee for the CFA exams. The pricing is tiered and depends on whether you enroll by 16 March, 24 August, or 16 September. Registering for the exam by the first date will cost you $630. For the other two dates, the costs will be $720 and $970 respectively. Basically, the sooner you enroll, the cheaper is the course for you.
The exam registration includes the prices of the CFA textbooks. You can get a $40 discount off the total cost if you order the curriculum as an e-book. Otherwise, you can order the curriculum in hard copy format but will have to pay for the shipping and handling fees. As an example, if you enroll for the CFA Level I Exam by 24th August, your total cost will be the $405 in enrollment fee plus the $720 for the exam registration less $40 for the e-book curriculum, which will equal to $1,085. I think I have answered all your questions on how to become a CFA in detail by now!